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CHOC'S Newest Scientist, Shengwen "Calvin" P.H.D.
Senior Scientist CHOC Center for Neuroscience and Stem-Cell Research

Dr. Loudon has recruited Dr. Calvin Li at the newly established CHOC Center for Neuroscience and Stem-Cell Research. Dr. Li received his doctorate at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, where his research described a neuron synapse-specific, clathri-coated vesicle-assemble regulator. He has been a pioneer in caveolae-regulated signal transduction research as a postdoctoral fellow supported by a NIH individual national research service award (NRSA) at the Whitehead Institute of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. As a research fellow at the Harvard University Medical School, he pursued mechanisms of caveolin-mediated signaling events related to cancer. His numerous publications are among the most frequently cited research articles in the field. He has numerous patent applications.

Dr. Li's research goal is to develop novel cancer therapies by "the determination of optimal 'therapeutic windows' for the targeted destruction of cancer stem cells."

As defined by Dr. Li, the therapeutic window addresses a potential window of opportunity when the cancer may be most susceptible to therapeutic intervention. The therapeutic window may differ by type of cancer, and even vary between individuals with the same cancer.

Working with Dr. Loudon, Dr. Li has taken systematic approaches as follows:

  • Human brain tumor banking
  • Isolation and characterization of cancer stem cells from human brain tumors
  • Molecular mechanism of cancer stem cell trafficking
  • Molecular control of cancer stem cells grown in co-culture three-dimensional microenvironment with tissue and/or synthetic polymer scaffolds.
  • Cellular, molecular, and physiological determination of a "therapeutic window" for targeted destruction of cancer stem cells.
  • Isolation and characterization of the novel therapeutic potential for stem cell trafficking to brain tumors.


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Children's Hospital of Orange County is affiliated with UC Irvine Healthcare and UC Irvine School of Medicine

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