Stanford University Medical Center, 2001, Fellowship in Clinical Molecular Genetics and Clinical Cytogenetics
University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1998, PhD
Shanghai Medical University, China, 1990, MD
The focus of Dr. Fang's laboratory research is on the genomics and combinatorial genetics/epigenetics of human neoplasia. Combining classical genetic approaches of mapping, karyotyping, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), single-gene mutation analysis, bisulfite sequencing, and functional genetics with new genomic tools including chromosome genomic array testing (CGAT), next-generation sequencing, and whole genome sequencing, we aim to identify genetic and epigenetic aberrations in cancer that are prognostically significant and may serve as actionable biomarkers for treatment decision making for individual patients. Dr. Fang's research is currently supported by funding from the National Institute of Health, SWOG, and private foundations.
Dr. Fang's current clinical service is as Director of the Cytogenetics and Genomics Division, responsible for the clinical operation of these diagnostic laboratories at both University of Washington and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. The labs perform cytogenetic/molecular testing on adult and pediatric cancer patients undergoing treatment or hematopoietic cell transplantation, in addition to general genetic testing services for OB/GYN clinics and genetics clinic, providing prenatal diagnosis and postnatal diagnosis for inherited genetic disorders. Dr. Fang is currently the Chair of the Publication and Communication Committee of the Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP) and the Cytogenetics Subcommittee co-Chair of SWOG Leukemia Committee since 2009. She is also a member of the Board of Directors for both AMP and the Cancer Genome Consortium (CGC). Prior to relocating to Seattle, Dr. Fang was Director of Human Molecular Genetics laboratory and Section Chief for Oncology Cytogenetic Testing at the University of Connecticut Health Center. She served on the Genetics Review Panel of Center for Disease Control, Nominating Committee of the Association for Molecular Pathology, Lea's Foundation Hematology Advisory Committee, and UConn Translational Genomics Core Advisory Committee, among others.
Dr. Fang’s current studies focus on two diseases as representation of solid tumor and hematological malignancy. As part of a UW/FHCRC project grant for understanding the mechanism and markers for prostate cancer metastases, we genomically characterize the disseminated tumor cells (DTC) of prostate cancer, looking at correlates to progression and biological functions to explore the stem cell aspects of DTC and the role of DTC in tumor dormancy. We are extending our research to characterize circulating tumor cells (CTC) and cell-free DNA (cfDNA) as well. We also use high-throughput epigenetic tools to identify methylation markers important to distinguish indolent versus aggressive prostate cancer. For the study of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), we compare the global methylation profiling of good- and poor-outcome AML patients, especially those with normal cytogenetics, to identify differentially methylated genomic regions that will predict outcome and therapeutic response. Integrated studies of epigenetic and genomic/expression profiling, as well as functional pathway analyses, are important to help gain true insight into the pathophysiology of human cancer and to identify clinically useful diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive biomarkers.