James C. Yang, M.D.
James C. Yang, M.D.
Senior Investigator

Center for Cancer Research
National Cancer Institute

Building 10 CRC, Room 3-5952
Bethesda, MD 20892
301-496-1574

Dr. Yang has been involved in the clinical and scientific study of T-cell adoptive therapy and other immunotherapies to treat melanoma and other cancers. He is particularly interested in expanding these modalities to other cancers such as renal, lung and thyroid cancer and is initiating those clinical protocols. His laboratory efforts have concentrated on the development of novel antigen receptors for T-cells with optimized specificity and efficacy in treating cancers.

Areas of Expertise
1) immunotherapy 2) melanoma 3) T-cell adoptive transfer 4) renal cancer

Immune Rejection Mechanisms in Melanoma, Renal Cancer and Other Human Cancers

Our laboratory's major interest is in understanding the mechanisms of immune tumor rejection and then developing reagents to translate this understanding into clinical trials. In the last decade, it has been established that the immune system can cause the complete and durable rejection of certain metastatic cancers in some individuals. Our understanding of this process has been greatly enhanced by the discovery of several dozen tumor-associated antigens expressed by human melanoma, which can be recognized by tumor-reactive T cells. At this point, our major new challenges include:

  1. Understanding why human melanomas frequently contain tumor-reactive T cells in their tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) and why other human tumors appear not to
  2. Discovering why human renal cancers respond to immunotherapies very similarly to melanomas, even without containing tumor-reactive TIL
  3. Developing the reagents necessary to induce T-cell-mediated rejection of non-melanoma tumors based on principles learned from treating melanoma with T-cell adoptive transfer
Scientific Focus Areas:
Clinical Research, Immunology
Selected Publications
  1. Tran E, Turcotte S, Gros A, Robbins PF, Lu YC, Dudley ME, Wunderlich JR, Somerville RP, Hogan K, Hinrichs CS, Parkhurst MR, Yang JC, Rosenberg SA.
    Science. 344: 641-5, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  2. Beane JD, Yang JC, White D, Steinberg SM, Rosenberg SA, Rudloff U.
    Ann. Surg. Oncol. 21: 2484-9, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  3. Yang JC, Sherry RM, Rosenberg SA.
    Nat Rev Clin Oncol. 11: 245-6, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  4. Gros A, Robbins PF, Yao X, Li YF, Turcotte S, Tran E, Wunderlich JR, Mixon A, Farid S, Dudley ME, Hanada K, Almeida JR, Darko S, Douek DC, Yang JC, Rosenberg SA.
    J. Clin. Invest. 124: 2246-59, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  5. Tseng J, Citrin DE, Waldman M, White DE, Rosenberg SA, Yang JC.
    Cancer. 120: 1426-32, 2014. [ Journal Article ]

Dr. Yang graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a B.S. in biology. He then completed his M.D. and surgical internship and residency at the University of California, San Diego. In 1984, he came to the Surgery Branch, NCI, as a medical staff fellow. He subsequently became a senior staff fellow, then a senior investigator in 1987. He has been involved in studies of the immune response to tumor-associated antigens and has been a principal investigator of clinical trials in renal cell carcinoma and soft tissue sarcoma.

Name Position
Christopher Alex Chow Postbaccalaureate Fellow
Kayla Griffith M.D. Clinical Fellow
Ken-ichi Hanada M.D., Ph.D. Staff Scientist
W. David Jones Biological Laboratory Technician
Krishna Bharat Patel M.D. Clinical Fellow
Emanuela Romano Special Volunteer
Qiong J. Wang Ph.D. Research Biologist

Summary

Dr. Yang has been involved in the clinical and scientific study of T-cell adoptive therapy and other immunotherapies to treat melanoma and other cancers. He is particularly interested in expanding these modalities to other cancers such as renal, lung and thyroid cancer and is initiating those clinical protocols. His laboratory efforts have concentrated on the development of novel antigen receptors for T-cells with optimized specificity and efficacy in treating cancers.

Areas of Expertise
1) immunotherapy 2) melanoma 3) T-cell adoptive transfer 4) renal cancer

Clinical Trials

Research

Immune Rejection Mechanisms in Melanoma, Renal Cancer and Other Human Cancers

Our laboratory's major interest is in understanding the mechanisms of immune tumor rejection and then developing reagents to translate this understanding into clinical trials. In the last decade, it has been established that the immune system can cause the complete and durable rejection of certain metastatic cancers in some individuals. Our understanding of this process has been greatly enhanced by the discovery of several dozen tumor-associated antigens expressed by human melanoma, which can be recognized by tumor-reactive T cells. At this point, our major new challenges include:

  1. Understanding why human melanomas frequently contain tumor-reactive T cells in their tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TIL) and why other human tumors appear not to
  2. Discovering why human renal cancers respond to immunotherapies very similarly to melanomas, even without containing tumor-reactive TIL
  3. Developing the reagents necessary to induce T-cell-mediated rejection of non-melanoma tumors based on principles learned from treating melanoma with T-cell adoptive transfer
Scientific Focus Areas:
Clinical Research, Immunology

Publications

Selected Publications
  1. Tran E, Turcotte S, Gros A, Robbins PF, Lu YC, Dudley ME, Wunderlich JR, Somerville RP, Hogan K, Hinrichs CS, Parkhurst MR, Yang JC, Rosenberg SA.
    Science. 344: 641-5, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  2. Beane JD, Yang JC, White D, Steinberg SM, Rosenberg SA, Rudloff U.
    Ann. Surg. Oncol. 21: 2484-9, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  3. Yang JC, Sherry RM, Rosenberg SA.
    Nat Rev Clin Oncol. 11: 245-6, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  4. Gros A, Robbins PF, Yao X, Li YF, Turcotte S, Tran E, Wunderlich JR, Mixon A, Farid S, Dudley ME, Hanada K, Almeida JR, Darko S, Douek DC, Yang JC, Rosenberg SA.
    J. Clin. Invest. 124: 2246-59, 2014. [ Journal Article ]
  5. Tseng J, Citrin DE, Waldman M, White DE, Rosenberg SA, Yang JC.
    Cancer. 120: 1426-32, 2014. [ Journal Article ]

Biography

Dr. Yang graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a B.S. in biology. He then completed his M.D. and surgical internship and residency at the University of California, San Diego. In 1984, he came to the Surgery Branch, NCI, as a medical staff fellow. He subsequently became a senior staff fellow, then a senior investigator in 1987. He has been involved in studies of the immune response to tumor-associated antigens and has been a principal investigator of clinical trials in renal cell carcinoma and soft tissue sarcoma.

Team

Name Position
Christopher Alex Chow Postbaccalaureate Fellow
Kayla Griffith M.D. Clinical Fellow
Ken-ichi Hanada M.D., Ph.D. Staff Scientist
W. David Jones Biological Laboratory Technician
Krishna Bharat Patel M.D. Clinical Fellow
Emanuela Romano Special Volunteer
Qiong J. Wang Ph.D. Research Biologist