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[2013/01/15] 8th TienTe Lee Biomedical Awards Recipients at Yang Ming University
8th TienTe Lee Biomedical Awards Recipients at Yang Ming University

[102/01/15]

8th TienTe Lee Biomedical Awards Recipients at Yang Ming University

Dr. Tz-Chuen Ju (Institute of Neuroscience), Dr. Wen-Hao Yang (Institute of Clinical Medicine),Dr. Wei-Lun Hwang (Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology),and Dr. Chun-Yu Wei (Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) receive the 8th TienTe Lee Biomedical Awards-- Distinguished Thesis Awards.

Dr. Tz-Chuen Ju graduated from the Institute of neuroscience at National Yang-Ming University under the supervision of Dr. Yijuang Chern. Dr. Ju receives this award based on her Ph.D. thesis entitled "Nuclear translocation of AMPK-alpha1 potentiates striatal neurodegeneration in Huntington's disease". Dr. Ju demonstrated that the alpha1 isoform of AMPK was specifically activated and translocated into the nuclei of neurons in a mouse model of Huntington's disease. Further stimulation of AMPK-alpha1 also greatly enhanced the death of striatal neurons. Importantly, a beneficial reagent (CGS21680) significantly enhanced the expression of a survival protein (Bcl2) by attenuating the detrimental role of AMPK-alpha1 via a cAMP/PKA-dependent pathway.

Dr. Wen-Hao Yang graduated from Institute of Clinical Medicine, and his adviser is Dr. Muh-Hwa Yang. The title of the awarded thesis is "RAC1 activation mediates Twist1-induced cancer cell migration". He proposed that the EMT inducer Twist1 cooperates with Bmi1 to suppress let-7i expression, which results in upregulation of NEDD9 and DOCK3, leading to RAC1 activation and enabling mesenchymal-mode movement in three-dimensional environments. This study provides a reasonable explanation for the clinical observation that HNSCC results in severe local tissue destruction with a relative low frequency of distal organ metastasis.

Dr. Wei-Lun Hwang was admitted to the TIGP-Molecular Medicine program and registered with the Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, National Yang-Ming University under the supervision of Dr. Hsei-Wei Wang (Professor, Institute of Microbiology and Immunology, National Yang-Ming University). His research entitled "SNAIL Regulates Interleukin-8 Expression, Stem-Cell-Like Activity, and Tumorigenicity of Human Colorectal Carcinoma Cells" is selected for TienTe Lee Award this year. Dr. Hwang found that degree of cell dedifferentiation is correlated with a poor prognosis and tumor recurrence. To characterize stemness properties of colon cancer stem cells (Co-CSCs) for developing novel therapeutic approaches, Dr. Hwang deciphered the genetic networks of Co-CSCs by systems biology approaches and defined the transcription factor Snail is the most dominant epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) regulator that maintains embryonic stem cell-related gene expression and stem-cell properties of Co-CSCs by activating Interleukin-8 (IL8) expression.

Dr. Chun-Yu Wei was instructed by Dr. Yuan-Tsong Chen from the Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Academia Sinica and Dr. Shuen-Iu Hung from the Institute of Pharmacology, Yang-Ming University. The title of the award paper is "Direct interaction between HLA-B and carbamazepine activates T cells in patients with Stevens-Johnson syndrome". Their research demonstrated that HLA-B*1502 can present CBZ to specific cytotosic T cells. Furthermore, the surface plasmon resonance analysis showed that HLA-B*1502 not only interacted with CBZ but also showed binding affinity toward chemicals sharing 5-carboxamide on the tricyclic ring, as with CBZ. This study demonstrates a direct interaction of HLA with drugs, provides a detailed molecular mechanism of HLA-associated drug hypersensitivity and has clinical correlations for CBZ-related drug-induced SJS/TEN.

Congratulation!

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Dr. Tz-Chuen Ju

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Dr. Wen-Hao Yang

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Dr. Wei-Lun Hwang

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Dr. Chun-Yu Wei



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