Contact Information
Address (Office) E12-4013 Guokai CHEN
(Lab) N22-2007
Phone (Office) 8822 4985
(Lab) 8822 2913
Fax 8822 2314
Email GuokaiChen@umac.mo
Education
Ph.D. Baylor College of Medicine
B.S. Sichuan University
Position
2016-present Assistant Dean (Student Affairs), Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Macau
2014-present Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Macau
2011-2014 Director, iPSC and Genome Engineering Core Facility, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, USA
2008-2011 Assistant Scientist, Wisconsin Genome Center, University of Wisconsin, Madison.Morgridge Institute of Discovery
2006-2008 Post-doctoral fellow, Wisconsin Genome Center, University of Wisconsin, Madison
2003-2006 Post-doctoral fellow, Baylor College of Medicine
Research Interests
Our group is interested in the molecular regulation of growth factors and nutritional factors that affects maintenance and differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (ESC) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC). Based on our knowledge from basic research, we devote our effort to develop novel technologies that could facilitate stem cell applications in basic and translational research. Multiple of our previous inventions have been successfully launched in commercial production for stem cell research in the field.Our current research interests include:

  • Derivation and Differentiation of human iPSC for disease models
  • Molecular mechanisms of lineage specific differentiation
  • Nutritional regulation of human ES and iPS cells
  • Chemically defined differentiation conditions for clinically relevant cell types
Representative Publications
  • Intrathecal delivery of human ESC-derived mesenchymal stem cell spheres promotes recovery of a primate multiple sclerosis model. Yan L, Jiang B, Niu Y, Wang H, Li E, Yan Y, Sun H, Duan Y, Chang S, Chen G, Ji W, Xu RH, Si W. Cell Death Discov. 2018 Aug 20;5:28.
  • The Suppression of Medium Acidosis Improves the Maintenance and Differentiation of Human Pluripotent Stem Cells at High Density in Defined Cell Culture Medium. Liu W, Ren Z, Lu K, Song C, Cheung ECW, Zhou Z, Chen G. Int J Biol Sci. 2018 Apr 5;14(5):485-496.
  • Identification of Novel Targets for Lung Cancer Therapy Using an Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Model. Shukla V, Rao M, Zhang H, Beers J, Wangsa D, Wangsa D, Buishand FO, Wang Y, Yu Z, Stevenson H, Reardon E, McLoughlin KC, Kaufman A, Payabyab E, Hong JA, Zhang M, Davis SR, Edelman DC, Chen G, Miettinen M, Restifo N, Ried T, Meltzer PS, Schrump DS. Ann Am Thorac Soc. 2018 Apr;15(Supplement_2):S127-S128.
  • Heparin Promotes Cardiac Differentiation of Human Pluripotent Stem Cells in Chemically Defined Albumin-Free Medium, Enabling Consistent Manufacture of Cardiomyocytes. Lin Y, Linask KL, Mallon B, Johnson K, Klein M, Beers J, Xie W, Du Y, Liu C, Lai Y, Zou J, Haigney M, Yang H, Rao M, Chen G. Stem Cells Transl Med. 2017 Feb;6(2):527-538. doi: 10.5966/sctm.2015-0428.
  • A cost-effective and efficient reprogramming platform for large-scale production of integration-free human induced pluripotent stem cells in chemically defined culture. Beers J, Linask KL, Chen JA, Siniscalchi LI, Lin Y, Zheng W, Rao M, Chen G. Sci Rep. 2015 Jun 11;5:11319.
  • Snail1-dependent control of embryonic stem cell pluripotency and lineage commitment. Lin Y, Li XY, Willis AL, Liu C, Chen G, Weiss SJ. Nat Commun. 2014;5:3070.
  • Passaging and colony expansion of human pluripotent stem cells by enzyme-free dissociation in chemically defined culture conditions. Beers J, Gulbranson DR, George N, Siniscalchi LI, Jones J, Thomson JA, Chen G. Nat Protoc. 2012 Nov;7(11):2029-40.
  • Thermal stability of fibroblast growth factor protein is a determinant factor in regulating self-renewal, differentiation, and reprogramming in human pluripotent stem cells. Chen G, Gulbranson DR, Yu P, Hou Z, Thomson JA. Stem Cells. 2012 Apr;30(4):623-30.
  • Chemically defined conditions for human iPSC derivation and culture. Chen G, Gulbranson DR, Hou Z, Bolin JM, Ruotti V, Probasco MD, Smuga-Otto K, Howden SE, Diol NR, Propson NE, Wagner R, Lee GO, Antosiewicz-Bourget J, Teng JM, Thomson JA. Nat Methods. 2011 May;8(5):424-9.
  • Actin-myosin contractility is responsible for the reduced viability of dissociated human embryonic stem cells. Chen G, Hou Z, Gulbranson DR, Thomson JA. Cell Stem Cell. 2010 Aug 6;7(2):240-8.
  • Developmental commitment in Dictyostelium discoideum. Katoh M, Chen G, Roberge E, Shaulsky G, Kuspa A. Eukaryot Cell. 2007 Nov;6(11):2038-45.
  • Immune-like phagocyte activity in the social amoeba. Chen G, Zhuchenko O, Kuspa A. Science. 2007 Aug 3;317(5838):678-81.
  • Generation of an induced pluripotent stem cell line from an adult male with 45,X/46,XY mosaicism. Luo Y, Zhu D, Xu X, Ge L, Sun X, Chen G, Chen Y. Stem Cell Res. 2018 Mar;27:42-45. doi: 10.1016/j.scr.2018.01.003.
  • ASXL3 Is a Novel Pluripotency Factor in Human Respiratory Epithelial Cells and a Potential Therapeutic Target in Small Cell Lung Cancer. Shukla V, Rao M, Zhang H, Beers J, Wangsa D, Wangsa D, Buishand FO, Wang Y, Yu Z, Stevenson HS, Reardon ES, McLoughlin KC, Kaufman AS, Payabyab EC, Hong JA, Zhang M, Davis S, Edelman D, Chen G, Miettinen MM, Restifo NP, Ried T, Meltzer PA, Schrump DS. Cancer Res. 2017 Nov 15;77(22):6267-6281.
  • Derivation of Human-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells in Chemically Defined Medium. Chen G, Rao M. Methods Mol Biol. 2017;1590:131-137.
  • Embryoid body formation from human pluripotent stem cells in chemically defined E8 media. Lin Y, Chen G. StemBook [Internet]. Cambridge (MA): Harvard Stem Cell Institute; 2008-.2014 Jun 1.
  • Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells for Disease Modeling and Evaluation of Therapeutics for Niemann-Pick Disease Type A. Long Y, Xu M, Li R, Dai S, Beers J, Chen G, Soheilian F, Baxa U, Wang M, Marugan JJ, Muro S, Li Z, Brady R, Zheng W. Stem Cells Transl Med. 2016 Dec;5(12):1644-1655.
  • An Orthologous Epigenetic Gene Expression Signature Derived from Differentiating Embryonic Stem Cells Identifies Regulators of Cardiogenesis. Busser BW, Lin Y, Yang Y, Zhu J, Chen G, Michelson AM. PLoS One. 2015 Oct 20;10(10):e0141066.
  • Cryopreservation of human pluripotent stem cells in defined medium. Liu W, Chen G. Curr Protoc Stem Cell Biol. 2014 Nov 3;31:1C.17.1-13.
  • Self-renewal and cell lineage differentiation strategies in human embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells. Efthymiou AG, Chen G, Rao M, Chen G, Boehm M. Expert Opin Biol Ther. 2014 Sep;14(9):1333-44.
  • Stable enhanced green fluorescent protein expression after differentiation and transplantation of reporter human induced pluripotent stem cells generated by AAVS1 transcription activator-like effector nucleases. Luo Y, Liu C, Cerbini T, San H, Lin Y, Chen G, Rao MS, Zou J. Stem Cells Transl Med. 2014 Jul;3(7):821-35. doi: 10.5966/sctm.2013-0212.
  • Post-diagnosis hemoglobin change associates with overall survival of multiple malignancies – results from a 14-year hospital-based cohort of lung, breast, colorectal, and liver cancers. Wan S, Lai Y, Myers RE, Li B, Palazzo JP, Burkart AL, Chen G, Xing J, Yang H. BMC Cancer. 2013 Jul 10;13:340.
  • iPSC derivation from fibroblast in chemically defined medium. Chen G. StemBook [Internet]. Cambridge (MA): Harvard Stem Cell Institute; 2008-.2012 Jun 10.
  • Cryopreservation of human pluripotent stem cells in defined conditions. Chen G. StemBook [Internet]. Cambridge (MA): Harvard Stem Cell Institute; 2008-.2012 Jun 10.
  • Splitting hESC/hiPSC lines with EDTA in feeder free conditions. Chen G. StemBook [Internet]. Cambridge (MA): Harvard Stem Cell Institute; 2008-. 2012 Dec 10.
  • Prespore cell fate bias in G1 phase of the cell cycle in Dictyostelium discoideum. Chen G, Kuspa A. Eukaryot Cell. 2005 Oct;4(10):1755-64.
  • The genome of the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum. Eichinger L, Pachebat JA, Glöckner G, Rajandream MA, Sucgang R, Berriman M, Song J, Olsen R, Szafranski K, Xu Q, Tunggal B, Kummerfeld S, Madera M, Konfortov BA, Rivero F, Bankier AT, Lehmann R, Hamlin N, Davies R, Gaudet P, Fey P, Pilcher K, Chen G, Saunders D, Sodergren E, Davis P, Kerhornou A, Nie X, Hall N, Anjard C, Hemphill L, Bason N, Farbrother P, Desany B, Just E, Morio T, Rost R, Churcher C, Cooper J, Haydock S, van Driessche N, Cronin A, Goodhead I, Muzny D, Mourier T, Pain A, Lu M, Harper D, Lindsay R, Hauser H, James K, Quiles M, Madan Babu M, Saito T, Buchrieser C, Wardroper A, Felder M, Thangavelu M, Johnson D, Knights A, Loulseged H, Mungall K, Oliver K, Price C, Quail MA, Urushihara H, Hernandez J, Rabbinowitsch E, Steffen D, Sanders M, Ma J, Kohara Y, Sharp S, Simmonds M, Spiegler S, Tivey A, Sugano S, White B, Walker D, Woodward J, Winckler T, Tanaka Y, Shaulsky G, Schleicher M, Weinstock G, Rosenthal A, Cox EC, Chisholm RL, Gibbs R, Loomis WF, Platzer M, Kay RR, Williams J, Dear PH, Noegel AA, Barrell B, Kuspa A. Nature. 2005 May 5;435(7038):43-57.
  • Tissue-specific G1-phase cell-cycle arrest prior to terminal differentiation in Dictyostelium. Chen G, Shaulsky G, Kuspa A. Development. 2004 Jun;131(11):2619-30. Epub 2004 May 5.
  • Sequence and structure of the extrachromosomal palindrome encoding the ribosomal RNA genes in Dictyostelium. Sucgang R, Chen G, Liu W, Lindsay R, Lu J, Muzny D, Shaulsky G, Loomis W, Gibbs R, Kuspa A. Nucleic Acids Res. 2003 May 1;31(9):2361-8.
  • Role for YakA, cAMP, and protein kinase A in regulation of stress responses of Dictyostelium discoideum cells. Taminato A, Bagattini R, Gorjão R, Chen G, Kuspa A, Souza GM. Mol Biol Cell. 2002 Jul;13(7):2266-75.
Research Grants
2011-present National Institutes of Health Intramural funding, US$1,500,000 annually
2010-2011 NIH Center for Regenerative Medicine / NHLBI Intramural Funding. US$900,000
Patents
  • Chen G, Thomson JA. Simplified basic media for human pluripotent cell culture.
  • Chen G, Hou Z, Thomson JA. Improved vitronectin variants improve culture capacity supporting self-renewal or differentiation in human pluripotent stem cells.
  • Chen G, Thomson JA. Stabilized FGF1 mutants improve culture capacity supporting self-renewal or differentiation in human pluripotent stem cells.
  • Chen G, Hou Z, Thomson JA. Stabilized FGF2 mutant improves culture capacity supporting self-renewal or differentiation in human pluripotent stem cells.
  • Chen G, Lin Y. Improvement of chemically defined culture for hPSCs. (Pending)
  • Chen G, Lin Y. Cardiomyocyte differentiation from hPSCs in defined conditions. (Pending)
Awards
  • Young 1000-Plan Award, China, 2012
  • V.C. Joshi Memorial Award, Baylor College of Medicine 2002
Professional Activities
  • Associate Member, International Society for Stem Cell Research
  • Member (Life), Society of Chinese Bioscientists in America
  • Member, Stem Cell COREdinates