Wenyue Sun, Ph.D.
Dr. Sun's research interest is in the field of cancer genetics, particularly to understand the genetic and epigenetic alterations in rhabdomyosarcoma, a common pediatric soft tissue tumor. He has characterized the different DNA methylation patterns in rhabdomyosarcoma, and is currently unraveling the functional and clinical significance of these patterns in rhabdomyosarcoma. He systematically investigated the genetic, epigenetic and mitochondrial DNA alterations in head and neck cancer prior to joining the NCI. Dr. Sun has broad experiences on computational analysis of genomic big data.
Dr. Sun's current research focuses on epigenetic basis of rhabdomyosarocma development. Rhabdomyosarcoma is a family of pediatric soft tissue tumors associated with the skeletal muscle lineage. It is comprised of two major subtypes: fusion-positive (most commonly PAX3-FOXO1 or PAX7-FOXO1, resulting from 2;13 and 1;13 chromosomal translocations) and fusion-negative. Fusion-positive rhabdomyosarcoma represents the more aggressive, refractory subtype of this pediatric cancer. Dr. Sun's study has demonstrated that fusion-positive and fusion-negative rhabdomyosarcoma tumors exhibit distinct DNA methylation profiles. Compared with fusion-positive tumors, fusion-negative tumors display a DNA methylation pattern more similar to normal muscles. He establishes a DNA methylation signature that could classify fusion-positive and fusion-negative rhabdomyosarcoma tumors. Further investigation of the functional significance of DNA methylation in fusion-positive and fusion-negative rhabdomyosarcoma will broaden our knowledge of tumor biology, and may identify new therapeutic targets.
- Modern Pathology. 28: 1214-24, 2015. [ Journal Article ]
- Clinical Cancer Research. 21: 4947-59, 2015. [ Journal Article ]
- PLoS ONE. 9: e93102, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
- Cancer Research. 74: 1091-104, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
Detection of TIMP3 promoter hypermethylation in salivary rinse as an independent predictor of local recurrence-free survival in head and neck cancer.Clinical Cancer Research. 18: 1082-91, 2012. [ Journal Article ]
Dr. Sun received his B.S. in biochemistry in 1999 from Lanzhou University. He received his Ph.D. in medical oncology in 2004 from Peking Union Medical College. He subsequently pursued postdoctoral training in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Virginia. He further refined his expertise in cancer genetics by pursuing a postdoctoral research fellowship in the Department of Otolaryngology, Division of Head and Neck Cancer Research, at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions. Dr. Sun joined the NCI as a staff scientist in 2013.