Team Overview

With the notion of science above everything else, a strong tumor research team has been formed, combined with the academic background and interests of the scientists, and concentrated on tackling key tumor science and clinical core issues.

Justin L. Tan

Junior Principal Investigator


Research Areas

  • Cancer Chemical Biology
  • Cancer Cell Fate
  • Cancer Drug Discovery


  • National Science Scholarship (Singapore)
  • 100 Global Young Scientific Leaders (Gap Summit)
  • Certificate of Distinction in Teaching (Harvard)

Pictorial View

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  • 2020 - Present
    Junior Principal Investigator,Shenzhen Bay Laboratory 
  • 2017 - 2020
    Junior Principal Investigator,Genome Institute of Singapore
  • 2015 - 2020
    Research Fellow,Cancer Science Institute, NUS
  • 2014 - 2015
    Postdoctoral Fellow,Boston Children's Hospital 
  • 2009 - 2014
    PhD,Harvard University
  • 2008 - 2009
    Research Officer,Genome Institute of Singapore
  • 2005 - 2008
     B.Sc,University of California, Los Angeles 


Justin's work has been published in high impact journals such as Molecular Cell, Science, and Gastroenterology. He is an inventor on a patent for novel cancer therapeutics. Justin had received nearly 5,000,000 RMB of grants while he was a Junior Principal Investigator in Singapore. He is a member of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Selected Publications

Tenen DG, Chai L & Tan JL*. Metabolic alterations and vulnerabilities in hepatocellular carcinoma. Gastroenterology Report, (2020). *Corresponding author. [Invited review article]

Tan JL*, Li F, Yeo JZ, Yong KJ, Bassal MA, Ng GH, Lee MY, Leong CY, Tan HK, Wu CS, Liu BH, Chan TH, Tan ZH, Chan YS, Wang S, Lim ZH, Toh TB, Hooi L, Low KN, Ma S, Kong NR, Stein AJ, Wu Y, Thangavelu MT, Suzuki A, Periyasamy G, Asara JM, Dan YY, Bonney GK, Chow EK, Lu G, Ng HH, Kanagasundaram Y, Ng SB, Tam WL, Tenen DG & Chai L. New High-throughput Screen Identifies Compounds That Reduce Viability Specifically In Liver Cancer Cells That Express High Levels of SALL4 by Inhibiting Oxidative Phosphorylation. Gastroenterology 157, 1615 (2019). *Co-corresponding author. [Editorial Highlight in Gastroenterology]

Tan JL, Fogley RD, Flynn RA, Ablain J, Yang S, Saint-André V, Fan ZP, Do BT, Laga AC, Fujinaga K, Santoriello C, Greer CB, Kim YJ, Clohessy JG, Bothmer A, Pandell N, Avagyan S, Brogie JE, van Rooijen E, Hagedorn EJ, Shyh-Chang N, White RM, Price DH, Pandolfi PP, Peterlin BM, Zhou Y, Kim TH, Asara JM, Chang HY, Young RA & Zon LI. Stress from nucleotide depletion activates the transcriptional regulator HEXIM1 to suppress melanoma. Mol. Cell 62, 34-46 (2016). [Highlighted in News and Views in Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research]

Kaufman CK, Mosimann C, Fan ZP, Yang S, Thomas AJ, Ablain J, Tan JL, Fogley RD, van Rooijen E, Hagedorn EJ, Ciarlo C, White RM, Matos DA, Puller AC, Santoriello C, Liao EC, Young RA, Zon LI. A zebrafish melanoma model reveals emergence of neural crest identity during melanoma initiation. Science 351, 464 (2016).

Tan JL & Zon LI. Chemical screening in zebrafish for novel biological and therapeutic discovery. Methods Cell Biol. 105, 493-516 (2011).