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Lei Zheng, M.D., Ph.D.

Photo of Dr. Lei Zheng, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Oncology


Languages: English, Chinese

Expertise: Anal Cancer, Bile Duct Cancer, Carcinoid Syndrome, Carcinoid Tumors, Cholangiocarcinoma, Colon Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Gastric Cancer, Gastroesophageal Junction Cancer, Gastrointestinal Cancers, Gastrointestinal Tumors, Hepatocellular Cancer, Liver Cancer, Medical Oncology, Neuroendocrine Tumors, Pancreatic Cancer, Peri-Ampullar Cancer, Rectal Cancer, Small Bowel Cancer, Small Intestine Cancer, Stomach Cancer more


Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center
Appointment Phone: 410-955-8964

401 N. Broadway
Baltimore, MD 21231 map



  • MD, Peking Union Medical College Beijing (1996)


  • Long Island Jewish Medical Center / Internal Medicine (2006)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Medical Oncology (2009)

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Internal Medicine / Internal Medicine (2006)
  • American Board of Internal Medicine / Medical Oncology (2008)

Research & Publications

Selected Publications

Research Summary
Dr. Zheng is one of the lead researchers on a project to use immunized sera from vaccinated patients to identify candidate pancreatic cancer associated proteins against which the immune system has been activated. Through this project, he has identified a molecular pathway that underlies the tumor-stroma interaction in the tumor''s microenvironment of pancreatic cancer. His current research interest is to further explore the roles of the pancreatic tumor''s microenvironment in developing immune tolerance and in supporting tumor growth, invasion and metastasis. His long-term goal is to develop novel therapeutics for pancreatic cancer by targeting tumor''s microenvironment and to conduct innovative "first in human" clinical trials.

He is also the lead investigator on the development of vaccines and immune based therapies as pre-operative, post-operative, and long-term maintenance treatments for patients with pancreatic cancer. His clinical research interest is focused on developing multidisciplinary therapeutics in the pre-operative/neoadjuvant setting for patients with pancreatic cancer.

Dr. Zheng is also one of the lead investigators on the development of vaccine-based therapies in combination with surgery and chemotherapy for patients with colorectal cancer.

Journal Citations
Li S, Ting N S.Y., Zheng L, Chen P-L, Ziv Y, Shiloh Y, Lee E Y-H, and Lee W-H. (2000). Functional link of BRCA1 and ataxia-telangiectasia gene product in DNA damage response. Nature, 406: 210-215.

Zheng L, Pan H, Li S, Flesken-Nikitin A, Chen P-L, Boyer T, and Lee W-H. (2000) A novel zinc-finger protein, ZBRK1, represses transcription of the GADD45 gene mediated by BRCA1. Molecular Cell, 6: 757-768.

Zheng L, Lee W-H, and Boyer TG. (2001) BRCA1 mediates ligand-independent transcriptional repression of the estrogen receptor. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 98:9587-9592.

Zheng L, Flesken-Nikitin A, Chen P-L and Lee W-H. (2002) Deficiency of Retinoblastoma gene in mouse embryonic stem cells leads to genetic instability. Cancer Res. 62:2498-502.

Peng H, Zheng L, Lee WH, Rux JJ, Rauscher FJ 3rd. (2002) Common DNA-binding site for SZF1 and the BRCA1-associated zinc finger protein, ZBRK1. Cancer Res. 62:3773-81.

Chen Y, Riley DJ, Zheng L, Chen PL, Lee WH. (2002). Phosphorylation of the mitotic regulator protein Hec1 by Nek2 kinase is essential for faithful chromosome segregation. J. Biol. Chem. 2002 277:49408-16.

Zheng L, Roeder RG, Luo Y. (2003). S phase activation of the histone H2B promoter by OCA-S, a coactivator complex that contains GAPDH as a key component. Cell. 114:255-66.

Tan W, Zheng L, Lee WH, Boyer TG. (2004). Functional dissection of transcription factor ZBRK1 reveals zinc fingers with dual roles in DNA-binding and BRCA1-dependent transcriptional repression. J. Biol. Chem. 279:6576-87.

Dai R-P, Yu F-X, Chng H-W, Goh S-R, Fu J-L, Zheng L, Luo, Y. (2008). Histone 2B (H2B) expression is confined to a proper NAD+/NADH redox status. J. Biol. Chem. 283:26894-901.

Yu F-X, Dai R-P, Goh S-R, Zheng L, and Luo Y. (2009). Logic of a mammalian metabolic cycle: Restricting histone expression to a narrow NAD+/NADH redox window that gates S-phase progression. Cell Cycle 8:773-9.

Zheng L, and Lee W-H. (2001) The retinoblastoma gene: a prototypic and multifunctional tumor suppressor. (Review). Experimental Cell Research 264: 2-18.

Zheng L, Li S, Boyer TG, and Lee W-H. (2000) Lessons Learned From BRCA1 and BRCA2. (Review) Oncogene, 19:6159-6175.

Zheng L, and Lee W-H. (2002) Retinoblastoma tumor suppressor and genome stability (Review). Advances in Cancer Research. 85:13-50.

Book Chapters
Zheng L, and Jaffee E.M. (2009) Vaccine Therapy and Immunotherapy. In Handbook of Pancreatic Cancer. Neoptolemos, Buchler, Abbruzzese, Urrutia (Eds.) Springer.

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