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Haifa Shen, MD, PhD

Professor of Nanomedicine, Academic Institute
Full Member, Research Institute
Houston Methodist
Weill Cornell Medical College

Research Lab

Dr. Shen earned his M.D. degree in 1985 from Zhejiang University Medical School in Hangzhou, China and his Ph.D. degree in 1997 from the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Texas at Houston and MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. After completing a four-year postdoctoral fellowship at the National Cancer Institute, he entered the pharmaceutical industry as a drug development scientist. He returned to Academia in 2010. Dr. Shen is currently Professor of Nanomedicine, Houston Methodist Academic Institute, Full Member, Houston Methodist Research Institute, and Member of Houston Methodist Cancer Center. He is also on faculty at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, New York.

Description of Research

Dr. Shen's research interest is on the development of effective treatments for human cancers. His research team has designed and developed (1) an injectable nanoparticle generator platform for targeted delivery and in situ activation of prodrugs at the tumor lesions, (2) an inflammatory tumor vasculature-targeted delivery system for small molecule inhibitors and therapeutic siRNA, and (3) a highly potent therapeutic cancer nanovaccine platform. Researchers in the lab are applying these technology platforms to treat multiple cancer types. Multiple projects from Dr. Shen’s laboratory have been promoted from research to drug development and clinical applications.

Areas Of Expertise

Nanotechnology Drug delivery Experimental cancer therapy Cancer vaccine
Education & Training

Postdoctoral Fellowship, National Cancer Institute (NCI)
PhD, The University of Texas at Houston, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

Tumor derived UBR5 promotes ovarian cancer growth and metastasis through inducing immunosuppressive macrophages
Song, M, Yeku, OO, Rafiq, S, Purdon, T, Dong, X, Zhu, L, Zhang, T, Wang, H, Yu, Z, Mai, J, Shen, H, Nixon, B, Li, M, Brentjens, RJ & Ma, X 2020, , Nature Communications, vol. 11, no. 1, 6298.

A facile assay for rapid detection of COVID-19 antibodies
Liu, C, Mao, B, Martinez, V, Chen, X, Li, Y, He, L, Chen, S, Guo, X, Shen, X, Bao, X, Shen, H, Lenna, S, Qian, P, Wu, L & Li, C 2020, , RSC Advances, vol. 10, no. 47, pp. 28041-28048.

Liposome-embedding silicon microparticle for oxaliplatin delivery in tumor chemotherapy
Cevenini, A, Celia, C, Orrù, S, Sarnataro, D, Raia, M, Mollo, V, Locatelli, M, Imperlini, E, Peluso, N, Peltrini, R, De Rosa, E, Parodi, A, Del Vecchio, L, Di Marzio, L, Fresta, M, Netti, PA, Shen, H, Liu, X, Tasciotti, E & Salvatore, F 2020, , Pharmaceutics, vol. 12, no. 6, 559, pp. 1-28.

Sequential deconstruction of composite drug transport in metastatic breast cancer
Goel, S, Zhang, G, Dogra, P, Nizzero, S, Cristini, V, Wang, Z, Hu, Z, Li, Z, Liu, X, Shen, H & Ferrari, M 2020, , Science advances, vol. 6, no. 26, eaba4498.

Retraction of the Research Article: "Molecular targeting of FATP4 transporter for oral delivery of therapeutic peptide" by Z. Hu, S. Nizzero, S. Goel, L. E. Hinkle, X. Wu, C. Li, M. Ferrari and H. Shen
Nizzero, S, Goel, S, Hinkle, LE, Wu, X, Li, C, Ferrari, M & Shen, H 2020, Science advances, vol. 6, no. 26, pp. eabc9572.

Molecular targeting of FATP4 transporter for oral delivery of therapeutic peptide
Hu, Z, Nizzero, S, Goel, S, Hinkle, LE, Wu, X, Li, C, Ferrari, M & Shen, H 2020, , Science advances, vol. 6, no. 14, eaba0145.

Immunotherapeutic Transport Oncophysics: Space, Time, and Immune Activation in Cancer
Nizzero, S, Shen, H, Ferrari, M & Corradetti, B 2020, , Trends in Cancer, vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 40-48.

Education and Outreach in Physical Sciences in Oncology
Walker, SA, Pham, A, Nizzero, S, Kim, M, Riter, B, Bletz, J, Judge, S, Phillips, B, Noble, D, Murray, D, Wetzel, E, Samson, S, McMahon, M, Flink, C, Couch, J, Tomlin, C, Swanson, K, Anderson, ARA, Odde, D, Shen, H, Hughes, S, Zahir, N, Enderling, H & Wolfram, J 2021, , Trends in Cancer, vol. 7, no. 1, pp. 3-9.

Immunotherapeutic Transport Oncophysics: space, time, and immune activation against cancer.
Nizzero, S, Shen, H, Ferrari, M & Corradetti, B 2019, Trends in Cancer.

Systematic comparison of methods for determining the in vivo biodistribution of porous nanostructured injectable inorganic particles
Nizzero, S, Li, F, Zhang, G, Venuta, A, Borsoi, C, Mai, J, Shen, H, Wolfram, J, Li, Z, Blanco, E & Ferrari, M 2019, , Acta Biomaterialia, vol. 97, pp. 501-512.

Vulnerable Atherosclerotic Plaque Imaging by Small-Molecule High-Affinity Positron Emission Tomography Radiopharmaceutical
Yang, Z, Li, F, Yelamanchili, D, Zeng, Z, Rosales, C, Youker, KA, Shen, H, Ferrari, M, Mahmarian, J, Pownall, HJ, Hamilton, DJ & Li, Z 2019, advanced therapeutics, vol. 2, no. 8.

Investigation of parameters that determine Nano-DC vaccine transport
Zhang, J, Mai, J, Li, F, Shen, J, Zhang, G, Li, J, Hinkle, LE, Lin, D, Liu, X, Li, Z, Wang, RF, Mittendorf, EA, Ferrari, M & Shen, H 2019, , Biomedical Microdevices, vol. 21, no. 2, 39.

Tracking biodistribution of myeloid-derived cells in murine models of breast cancer
Li, J, Mai, J, Hinkle, L, Lin, D, Zhang, J, Liu, X, Ramirez, MR, Zu, Y, Lokesh, GL, Volk, DE & Shen, H 2019, , Genes, vol. 10, no. 4, 297.

PTGER3 induces ovary tumorigenesis and confers resistance to cisplatin therapy through up-regulation Ras-MAPK/Erk-ETS1-ELK1/CFTR1 axis
Rodriguez-Aguayo, C, Bayraktar, E, Ivan, C, Aslan, B, Mai, J, He, G, Mangala, LS, Jiang, D, Nagaraja, AS, Ozpolat, B, Chavez-Reyes, A, Ferrari, M, Mitra, R, Siddik, ZH, Shen, H, Yang, X, Sood, AK & Lopez-Berestein, G 2019, , EBioMedicine, vol. 40, pp. 290-304.

Chemotherapy sensitizes therapy-resistant cells to mild hyperthermia by suppressing heat shock protein 27 expression in triple-negative breast cancer
Mu, C, Wu, X, Zhou, X, Wolfram, J, Shen, J, Zhang, D, Mai, J, Xia, X, Holder, AM, Ferrari, M, Liu, X & Shen, H 2018, , Clinical Cancer Research, vol. 24, no. 19, pp. 4900-4912.

Sensitizing non-small cell lung cancer to BCL-xL-targeted apoptosis
Shen, Q, Li, J, Mai, J, Zhang, Z, Fisher, A, Wu, X, Li, Z, Ramirez, MR, Chen, S & Shen, H 2018, , Cell death & disease, vol. 9, no. 10, pp. 986.

DNA Thioaptamer with Homing Specificity to Lymphoma Bone Marrow Involvement
Mai, J, Li, X, Zhang, G, Huang, Y, Xu, R, Shen, Q, Lokesh, GL, Thiviyanathan, V, Chen, L, Liu, H, Zu, Y, Ma, X, Volk, DE, Gorenstein, DG, Ferrari, M & Shen, H 2018, , Molecular pharmaceutics, vol. 15, no. 5, pp. 1814-1825.

Pharmacological targeting of MYC-regulated IRE1/XBP1 pathway suppresses MYC-driven breast cancer
Zhao, N, Cao, J, Xu, L, Tang, Q, Dobrolecki, LE, Lv, X, Talukdar, M, Lu, Y, Wang, X, Hu, DZ, Shi, Q, Xiang, Y, Wang, Y, Liu, X, Bu, W, Jiang, Y, Li, M, Gong, Y, Sun, Z, Ying, H, Yuan, B, Lin, X, Feng, XH, Hartig, SM, Li, F, Shen, H, Chen, Y, Han, L, Zeng, Q, Patterson, JB, Kaipparettu, BA, Putluri, N, Sicheri, F, Rosen, JM, Lewis, MT & Chen, X 2018, , Journal of Clinical Investigation, vol. 128, no. 4, pp. 1283-1299.

Distribution of glutathione-stabilized gold nanoparticles in feline fibrosarcomas and their role as a drug delivery system for doxorubicin—preclinical studies in a murine model
Zabielska-Koczywas, K, Wojtalewicz, A, Uzarowska, E, Klejman, A, Wojtkowska, A, Dolka, I, Wojnicki, M, Sobczak, K, Wójcik, M, Shen, H, Ferrari, M & Lechowski, R 2018, , International journal of molecular sciences, vol. 19, no. 4, 1021.

Cyclic cRGDfk peptide and Chlorin e6 functionalized silk fibroin nanoparticles for targeted drug delivery and photodynamic therapy
Mao, B, Liu, C, Zheng, W, Li, X, Ge, R, Shen, H, Guo, X, Lian, Q, Shen, X & Li, C 2018, , Biomaterials, vol. 161, pp. 306-320.