Liheng Wang, PhD
- ASSISTANT PROFESSOR | Medicine, Endocrinology, Diabetes and Bone Disease
Research Topics:Biochemistry, Diabetes, Liver, Metabolism, Obesity, Transcription Factors, Transcriptional Activation and Repression
Liheng Wang, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes Obesity and Metabolism Institute (DOMI) at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.
Dr. Wang received her B.S. in Biochemistry from China Agricultural University in 2007 and Ph.D. in Nutritional and Metabolic Biology in the Institute of Human Nutrition at Columbia University in 2015. During her PhD training in Dr. Rudolph Leibel’s laboratory, she had developed the first protocol of generating human hypothalamic neurons from pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and further applied in studying human genetic obesity syndromes. In 2016, she joined Dr. Domenico Accili’s laboratory for her postdoctoral training. Her research was focused on mouse genetics and physiology of diabetes, particularly transcriptional regulation of liver glucose and lipid metabolism. She has published 8 first-author research articles in Cell Metabolism (2022), Journal of Hepatology (2020), Journal of Clinical Investigations (2021, 2015), and Diabetes (2019) and other journals (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/myncbi/1jCqszge5p3kN /bibliography/public/). She has also received several awards, including Marija Chouinard Awards for Excellence in Research, Regeneron scholarship, NIH postdoctoral training award, and NIH K01 career development award.
In 2022, Dr. Wang joined Mount Sinai to start a new lab in DOMI. The research of Wang lab will focus on the transcription regulation of hepatic glucose and lipid metabolism in the context of type 2 diabetes (T2D), obesity and Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD), aiming to discover mechanisms underlying dysregulated glucose and lipid metabolism at the molecular, cellular, tissue, and physiological levels, and eventually to develop efficient and safe interventions for preventing and treating these chronic conditions. She is currently looking for post-doctoral scientists who combine personal drive with a real desire to learn in a collaborative setting.
Multi-Disciplinary Training AreaGenetics and Genomic Sciences [GGS]
PhD, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University
Type 2 diabetes (T2D) and obesity greatly increase the risk of other metabolic diseases including nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and cardiovascular disease. How to effectively prevent and treat T2D and obesity remains an urgent medical and public health challenge. My research interests during my graduate and postdoctoral training focused on mechanistic studies of T2D and obesity. I have contributed to this field 8 first-author (including two co-corresponding author) research articles and total 15 publications to date. My major findings include: (1) I first identified a repertoire of novel hormone-regulated transcription factors (TFs) that regulate hepatic glucose production (HGP) and provided a comprehensive analysis of hormone-mediated changes of TF occupancy on physiologically relevant genes in vivo and in vitro. (2) I further discovered TOX4 as a new TF involved in hormone-mediated regulation of HGP and the pathogenesis of hyperglycemia in T2D. This study has uncovered a new mechanism acting in parallel with FoxO1 to regulate HGP and thus suggests new therapeutic strategies for treating hepatic insulin resistance and T2D. (3) We have discovered PU.1 as an unexpected liver pathogenic factor for T2D and Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and provided proof-of-concept that PU.1 inhibitors can significantly improve features of NASH such as steatosis, inflammation, and fibrosis. (4) We have developed the first technique of generating human hypothalamic arcuate neurons from pluripotent stem cells and successfully applied it to reveal the underlying mechanisms of genetic obesity syndromes including PCSK1 deficiency, Joubert Syndrome and Bardet-Biedl Syndrome.