Wei Wei, PhD

Andy Hill CARE Distinguished Researcher & Associate Professor

Wei Wei

Dr. Wei Wei is an Associate Professor at the Institute for Systems Biology. He also has the position of Affiliate Faculty at the Molecular Engineering & Sciences Institute of the University of Washington. He received his B.S. in Fundamental Sciences (Mathematics and Physics) at Tsinghua University (Beijing) and M.S. in Materials Sciences and Engineering at UC San Diego. He obtained his Ph.D. at California Institute of Technology in 2014 with cross-disciplinary training that included both physical and biological sciences. Before joining ISB, Wei was an Assistant Professor at UCLA until mid-2018.

Wei received the Chinese Government Award for Outstanding Student Abroad in 2013. In 2014, he was the sole recipient of the Milton and Francis Clauser Doctoral Prize – the highest honor for a Caltech Ph.D. He received the Andy Hill Cancer Research Endowment Distinguished Researchers award in 2019. Dr. Wei has been serving as either program director or project lead in various nationwide cancer research consortium-funded projects. Some of these initiatives include the NCI-funded ISB/UCLA Physical Sciences in Oncology Network Program (PS-ON), ISB/UW Innovative Molecular Analysis Technologies (IMAT) program, ISB/UCLA Centers of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence (CCNE) program, and ISB/Yale/UCLA Cancer Systems Biology Consortium (CSBC) program.

Wei’s research interests reside in a highly cross-disciplinary field of BioMEMS, molecular and cellular analysis, and systems biomedicine. The overarching goal of the Wei Lab is to harness systems biology thinking and approaches to address critical questions and cultivate new understanding in both fundamental and translational cancer research. In cancer biology, the primary focus lies in understanding the phenotypic plasticity of cancer cells and its role in fostering non-genetic (adaptive) drug resistance, a form of resistance distinct from the Darwinian selection of resistant genotypes. The goal is to elucidate how cancer cells coordinate their internal molecular machinery to adapt to therapeutic stress and to understand how these adaptive changes evolve within the heterogeneous tumor and are modulated by the tumor microenvironment (TME). The lab scrutinizes this process across multiple molecular landscapes and at various temporal resolutions, to gain comprehensive insights at both mechanistic and systems levels. This line of inquiry also propels the development of innovative single-cell multi-omics and spatial multi-omics tools. On the translational research front, the lab is committed to advancing liquid biopsy-based predictive cancer diagnostics through the lens of disseminated/circulating tumor cells (DTCs/CTCs), and to revolutionizing functional precision medicine with needle biopsy-based organotypic drug sensitivity assays as companion diagnostics.

Single-cell/spatial multi-omics, cancer epigenetic plasticity, non-genetic drug resistance, functional precision medicine, cancer molecular diagnostics

2014           Ph.D. in Materials Sciences, California Institute of Technology

2008           M.S. in Materials Sciences and Engineering, UC San Diego

2005           B.S. in Fundamental Sciences (Mathematics and Physics), Tsinghua University

Jiang, Jianjun, Na Ge, Yuzhi Wang, Juntao Qi, Guibiao Wen, Xiufen Gu, Xuewen Yu, et al. 2023. “Castration Model Illuminates Sex Differences in Healthy Aging: Insights from Metabolome and Transcriptome Analyses.” bioRxiv. https://doi.org/10.1101/2023.12.27.573488. Cite
Cheng, Hanjun, Yin Tang, Zhonghan Li, Zhili Guo, James R. Heath, Min Xue, and Wei Wei. 2023. “Non-Mass Spectrometric Targeted Single-Cell Metabolomics.” Trends in Analytical Chemistry: TRAC 168: 117300. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trac.2023.117300. Cite
Flower, Cameron T., Chunmei Liu, James R. Heath, Wei Wei, and Forest M. White. 2023. “Abstract 4876: A Systems Pharmacology Approach to Discover Synergistic Targeted Therapy Combinations.” Cancer Research 83 (7_Supplement): 4876. https://doi.org/10.1158/1538-7445.AM2023-4876. Cite
Ye, Shengda, Bin Yang, Tingbao Zhang, Wei Wei, Zhiqiang Li, Jincao Chen, and Xiang Li. 2022. “Identification of an Immune-Related Prognostic Signature for Glioblastoma by Comprehensive Bioinformatics and Experimental Analyses.” Cells 11 (19): 3000. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells11193000. Cite
Su, Yapeng, Dan Yuan, Daniel G. Chen, Rachel H. Ng, Kai Wang, Jongchan Choi, Sarah Li, et al. 2022. “Multiple Early Factors Anticipate Post-Acute COVID-19 Sequelae.” Cell 0 (0). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2022.01.014. Cite
Guo, Zhili, Hanjun Cheng, Zhonghan Li, Shiqun Shao, Priyanka Sarkar, Siwen Wang, Rohit Chaudhuri, et al. 2021. “Single-Cell Profiling of Fatty Acid Uptake Using Surface-Immobilized Dendrimers.” Journal of the American Chemical Society 143 (29): 11191–98. https://doi.org/10.1021/jacs.1c05103. Cite
Cheng, Hanjun, Zhonghan Li, Zhili Guo, Shiqun Shao, Li Mo, Wei Wei, and Min Xue. 2021. “Single-Cell Profiling of D-2-Hydroxyglutarate Using Surface-Immobilized Resazurin Analogs.” Biosensors & Bioelectronics 190: 113368. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bios.2021.113368. Cite
Su, Yapeng, Dan Yuan, Daniel G. Chen, Kai Wang, Jongchan Choi, Chengzhen L. Dai, Sunga Hong, et al. 2021. “Heterogeneous Immunological Recovery Trajectories Revealed in Post-Acute COVID-19.” MedRxiv, 2021.03.19.21254004. https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.03.19.21254004. Cite
Yang, Liu, Xiaowei Yan, Jie Chen, Qiong Zhan, Yingqi Hua, Shili Xu, Ziming Li, et al. 2021. “Hexokinase 2 Discerns a Novel Circulating Tumor Cell Population Associated with Poor Prognosis in Lung Cancer Patients.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 118 (11). https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2012228118. Cite

Wei Lab
Institute for Systems Biology
401 Terry Ave N
Seattle WA 98109

Email: wwei@isbscience.org