Dr Chen Chen Jiang

Research Program:
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2017 Project Grant
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2016 Project Grant
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2014 Project Grant
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2011 Project Grant
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2010 Project Grant
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2010 Project Grant

What are your research interests?

  • To overcome the resistance of melanomas to targeted therapy
  • To actually select melanoma patients to immunotherapy
  • To resensitize melanoma patients to immunotherapy

Why did you get into research? 

Melanoma is the most serious form of skin cancer and is often referred to as Australia's national cancer, as Australia has the highest incidence of melanoma in the world. However, there is currently no curative treatment once the disease spreads beyond the original site. To address this major Australian health problem, I have been working on translational research in melanoma with a focused theme of “overcoming resistance of metastatic melanoma to treatment” for more than 10 years.

What would be the ultimate goal for your research?

I am determined to dedicate my research career to translational melanoma research and will expand my existing research program by strengthening clinical needs-based melanoma research, incorporating new biomedical research frontiers into melanoma research, and introducing novel biotechnologies to melanoma research. By doing so, I wish to become an internationally recognised authority in translational melanoma research, to continue to build up a highly competitive research team, and to attract more funding, junior researchers and students into the cancer research field.


Dr Jiang has been working on translational research in melanoma with a focused theme of “overcoming resistance of metastatic melanoma to treatment” for more than 10 years. She is currently in charge of the signal transduction team in the Melanoma Research Laboratory, which includes three research assistants and three PhD students. 

Dr Jiang pioneered studies on “understanding adaptive mechanisms of melanoma cells to endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress”, which has provided a number of insights into resistance mechanisms of melanoma to apoptosis (normally programmed cell death) induced by ER stress (a condition which alters the normal expression of proteins in a cell). No one else has investigated ER stress in melanoma, and its effect on melanoma cell survival and responses to treatment, as systematically and as comprehensively as she has.

Dr Jiang was also among the first to show that the inappropriate activation of survival pathways plays a critical role in the resistance of melanoma cells to cell death induced by various chemotherapeutic drugs. More recently, she has become a leading figure in the investigation of the roles of microRNAs (molecules involved in the regulation of gene expression) in the regulation of melanoma cell survival and proliferation.

Dr Jiang's work has resulted in 62 research publications in high impact journals including Nature Communications, PNAS, Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, Autophagy, Oncogene, Cell Death and Differentiation and Cell Death and Diseases. Her career publications have attracted more than 1500 citations, an outstanding number for an early-mid career researcher.

She was awarded the “Woman in Cancer Research Award” and the “Sanofi-Aventis Scholar-in-training Award” by the American Associated for Cancer Research in 2015 and 2010, respectively.

Dr Jiang has ongoing collaborations with a large number of researchers locally, nationally, and internationally. She has established productive collaborations with Professor Rodney Scott locally and Professors Richard Kefford and Richard Scolyer nationally. She has also established collaborations with researchers from many universities in China. Productive collaborations with researchers in China not only attracts high quality students and visiting academics, but also enables applications for funding as a collaborator from various sources in China.

Dr Jiang is an active participant in activities of academic organisations. She is a member of American Association of Cancer Research, the Australia and New Zealand Melanoma Trials Group, the Melanoma Tumor Group of the Hunter New England Area Health, and ASMR. She also regularly presents her work to various community groups and writes newsletters for local medical research associations. Through collaboration with pharmaceutical companies, Dr Jiang's research has contributed to the decision-making in planning and executing clinical trials with targeted inhibitors of the MAPK pathway, a central signaling pathway in all cells.

Specialised/Technical Skills 

  • Cancer biology
  • Melanoma biology
  • Signal transduction
  • Tumor immunology 


  • UON PRC of cancer
  • ASMR
  • MIA
  • AACR



Oncogenic upregulation of the long noncoding RNA MAFG-AS1
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It has become apparent over the last decade that a class of molecules called long noncoding RNAs (lncRNA), which were originally thought to be ‘junk’ in mammalian cells, play a major role in controlling gene expression and disease. 



Improving the treatment benefit of immunotherapy in cancer
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Cancer immunotherapy is a therapeutic strategy that harnesses cancer patients own immune system to specifically target cancer cells. A new class of newly developed drugs in cancer immunotherapy (called immune checkpoint inhibitors) can cause long lasting regression of tumors and prevent relapse but only a small number of patients currently benefit from these drugs.



Overcoming resistance of KRAS mutant colon cancer to treatment by targeting heat shock protein 90
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Most patients with late stage bowel cancer will eventually die of the disease because bowel cancer cells are resistant to drug treatment.



The Role of Phosphatidylinositol 4, 5-Bisphosphate 5-Phosphatase A (PIB5PA) in Regulation of PI3K/Akt Signalling in Melanoma - HMRI Project Grant
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Regulation of BimS splicing in response of human melanoma cells to inhibition of BRAFVV600E
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The Role of micro-RNA-149 in Regulation of Mcl-1 in Human Melanoma under Stress
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