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Kenneth  Tsai

Kenneth Tsai, MD, PhD

Pathology Research Vice Chair

Program: Pathology

Research Program: Cancer Biology & Evolution Program

Google Scholar Profile


  • Overview

    The Tsai Lab has the collective goals of identifying, testing, and validating novel targets for the targeted chemoprevention and treatment of skin cancer. 


    • Pathology
    • Tumor Microenvironment and Metastasis
    • Cancer Biology & Evolution Program
    • Melanoma & Skin Cancer Center of Excellence

    Education & Training


    • Massachusetts Institute of Technology, PhD - Biology


    • Harvard Medical School - Massachusetts General Hospital - Intern - Internal Medicine

    Board Certification:


      • Harvard Medical School - Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital - Dermatopathology


      • Harvard Medical School - Massachusetts General Hospital - Dermatology

      Medical School:

      • Harvard Medical School - MD
    • Research Interest

      The focus of Dr. Tsai’s laboratory is the identification and validation of new molecularly-targeted approaches for skin cancer prevention and treatment. In contrast to melanoma, which has 27 FDA-approved therapies, the non-melanoma skin cancers, which include basal cell, squamous cell, and Merkel cell carcinomas have but two (as of early 2017), highlighting vast differences in the fundamental molecular understanding of these diseases. Following Dr. Tsai’s clinical training, he started his laboratory at MD Anderson Cancer Center, where he refined his focus on cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (cuSCC) development. His work is centered on (1) developing an integrated genomic characterization of cuSCC development using next generation sequencing and UV-driven mouse models to identify and validate chemoprevention and therapeutic targets; (2) characterizing the roles of JNK signaling and validating JNK2 as a target in skin cancers (cuSCC and melanoma); (3) developing novel technologies to assess skin cancer risk and measure skin-based surrogate pharmacodynamic endpoints in cancer therapy. In this last area of technology development, he collaborates extensively on extramurally-funded projects with Samir Mitragotri, Ph.D. (UCSB) and Kevin Dalby, Ph.D. (UT Austin) to develop novel technologies to non-invasively sample skin for biomarker discovery and to validate additional kinase targets for cancer therapy.  Dr. Tsai’s work has been internationally recognized and he was an active member of the international melanoma TCGA Analysis Working Group. He has served as a mentor and thesis advisor to several MD/PhD and PhD graduate students, residents, and postdoctoral fellows. Most recently, he assumed the role of Section Head, Non-Melanoma Skin Cancer Research and Treatment within the Moffitt Cancer Center Donald A. Adam Melanoma and Skin Cancer Center of Excellence, where his mission is to develop and lead a premier translational research and clinical trial program for high-risk squamous cell and Merkel cell carcinomas.

    • Publications

      • Gatenby RA, Luddy KA, Teer JK, Berglund A, Freischel AR, Carr RM, Lam AE, Pienta KJ, Amend SR, Austin RH, Hammarlund EU, Cleveland JL, Tsai KY, Brown JS. Lung adenocarcinomas without driver genes converge to common adaptive strategies through diverse genetic, epigenetic, and niche construction evolutionary pathways. Med Oncol. 2024 May.41(6):135. Pubmedid: 38704802. Pmcid: PMC11070398.
      • Wasko UN, Jiang J, Dalton TC, Curiel-Garcia A, Edwards AC, Wang Y, Lee B, Orlen M, Tian S, Stalnecker CA, Drizyte-Miller K, Menard M, Dilly J, Sastra SA, Palermo CF, Hasselluhn MC, Decker-Farrell AR, Chang S, Jiang L, Wei X, Yang YC, Helland C, Courtney H, Gindin Y, Muonio K, Zhao R, Kemp SB, Clendenin C, Sor R, Vostrejs WP, Hibshman PS, Amparo AM, Hennessey C, Rees MG, Ronan MM, Roth JA, Brodbeck J, Tomassoni L, Bakir B, Socci ND, Herring LE, Barker NK, Wang J, Cleary JM, Wolpin BM, Chabot JA, Kluger MD, Manji GA, Tsai KY, Sekulic M, Lagana SM, Califano A, Quintana E, Wang Z, Smith JAM, Holderfield M, Wildes D, Lowe SW, Badgley MA, Aguirre AJ, Vonderheide RH, Stanger BZ, Baslan T, Der CJ, Singh M, Olive KP. Tumour-selective activity of RAS-GTP inhibition in pancreatic cancer. Nature. 2024 May.629(8013):927-936. Pubmedid: 38588697. Pmcid: PMC11111406.
      • Jasani N, Xu X, Posorske B, Kim Y, Vera O, Tsai KY, DeNicola GM, Karreth FA. MAPK-mediated PHGDH induction is essential for melanoma formation and represents an actionable vulnerability. bioRxiv. 2024 Apr. Pubmedid: 38659816. Pmcid: PMC11042198.
      • Murphy BM, Jensen DM, Arnold TE, Aguilar-Valenzuela R, Hughes J, Posada V, Nguyen KT, Chu VT, Tsai KY, Burd CJ, Burd CE. The OSUMMER lines: A series of ultraviolet-accelerated NRAS-mutant mouse melanoma cell lines syngeneic to C57BL/6. Pigment Cell Melanoma Res. 2023 Sep.36(5):365-377. Pubmedid: 37341054.
      • Sarin KY, Kincaid J, Sell B, Shahryari J, Duncton MAJ, Morefield E, Sun W, Prieto K, Chavez-Chiang O, de Moran Segura C, Nguyen J, Bronson RT, Plotkin SR, Kochendoerfer GG, Fenn P, Wootton MA, Powala C, de Souza MP, Tsai KY. Development of a MEK inhibitor, NFX-179, as a chemoprevention agent for squamous cell carcinoma. Sci Transl Med. 2023 Oct.15(717):eade1844. Pubmedid: 37820007.
      • Voigt AY, Walter A, Young TH, Graham JP, Batista Bittencourt BM, de Mingo Pulido A, Prieto K, Tsai KY, Sundberg JP, Oh J. Microbiome modulates immunotherapy response in cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. Exp Dermatol. 2023 Oct.32(10):1624-1632. Pubmedid: 37350109. Pmcid: PMC10592435.
      • Zhao Y, Amorrortu RP, Stewart SC, Ghia KM, Williams VL, Sondak VK, Tsai KY, Pinilla-Ibarz J, Chavez JC, Rollison DE. Melanoma and CLL co-occurrence and survival: role of KC history. BMC Cancer. 2023 Nov.23(1):1084. Pubmedid: 37946198. Pmcid: PMC10636833.
      • Soupir AC, Hayes MT, Peak TC, Ospina O, Chakiryan NH, Berglund AE, Stewart PA, Nguyen J, Segura CM, Francis NL, Echevarria PMR, Chahoud J, Li R, Tsai KY, Balasi JA, Peres YC, Dhillon J, Martinez LA, Gloria WE, Schurman N, Kim S, Gregory M, Mulé J, Fridley BL, Manley BJ. Increased spatial coupling of integrin and collagen IV in the immunoresistant clear cell renal cell carcinoma tumor microenvironment. bioRxiv. 2023 Nov. Pubmedid: 38014063. Pmcid: PMC10680839.
      • Beekman KE, Parker LM, DePalo DK, Elleson KM, Sarnaik AA, Tsai KY, Withycombe BM, Zager JS. Four cases of disseminated herpes simplex virus following talimogene laherparepvec injections for unresectable metastatic melanoma. JAAD Case Rep. 2023 Mar.33:56-58. Pubmedid: 36860805. Pmcid: PMC9969237.
      • Marin-Acevedo JA, Withycombe BM, Kim Y, Brohl AS, Eroglu Z, Markowitz J, Tarhini AA, Tsai KY, Khushalani NI. Cetuximab for Immunotherapy-Refractory/Ineligible Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma. Cancers (Basel). 2023 Jun.15(12). Pubmedid: 37370790. Pmcid: PMC10295991.
      • Amorrortu RP, Zhao Y, Stewart S, Ghia KM, Williams VL, Sondak VK, Tsai KY, Pinilla J, Chavez J, Rollison DE. History of keratinocyte carcinoma and survival after a second primary malignancy: the Moffitt Cancer Center patient experience. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2023 Jul.149(7):3607-3621. Pubmedid: 35962814.
      • Amit M, Baruch E, Nagarajan P, Gleber-Netto F, Rao X, Xie T, Akhter S, Adewale A, Islam S, Mattson B, Ferrarotto R, Wong M, Davies M, Jindal S, Basu S, Harwood C, Leigh I, Ajami N, Futreal A, Castillo M, Gunarante P, Goepfert R, Khushalani N, Wang J, Watowich S, Calin G, Migden M, Vermeer P, D'Silva N, Yaniv D, Burks J, Gomez J, Dougherty P, Tsai K, Allison J, Sharma P, Wargo J, Myers J, Gross N. Inflammation induced by tumor-associated nerves promotes resistance to anti-PD-1 therapy in cancer patients and is targetable by IL-6 blockade. Res Sq. 2023 Jul. Pubmedid: 37503252. Pmcid: PMC10371163.
      • Tieniber AD, Shannon A, Carr MJ, Sun J, Landa K, Baecher KM, Lynch K, Bartels HG, Panchaud R, Lowe MC, Slingluff CL, Jameson MJ, Tsai KY, Faries MB, Beasley GM, Sondak VK, Karakousis GC, Zager JS, Miura JT. Patterns of recurrence and prognosis in pathologic stage I and II Merkel cell carcinoma: A multicenter, retrospective cohort analysis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2023 Jan.88(1):251-253. Pubmedid: 35588924. Pmcid: PMC9667736.
      • Galambus J, Tsai KY. Molecular and immune targets in cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. Mol Carcinogen. 2023 Jan.62(1):38-51. Pubmedid: 36000298.
      • Voigt AY, Walter A, Young T, Graham JP, Batista Bittencourt BM, de Mingo Pulido A, Prieto K, Tsai KY, Sundberg JP, Oh J. Microbiome modulates immunotherapy response in cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. bioRxiv. 2023 Jan. Pubmedid: 36747869. Pmcid: PMC9900860.
      • Alhaddad H, Ospina OE, Khaled ML, Ren Y, Forsyth P, Pina Y, Macaulay R, Law V, Tsai KY, Cress WD, Fridley B, Smalley I. Spatial transcriptomics analysis identifies a unique tumor-promoting function of the meningeal stroma in melanoma leptomeningeal disease. bioRxiv. 2023 Dec. Pubmedid: 38187574. Pmcid: PMC10769278.
      • Kim S, Wuthrick E, Blakaj D, Eroglu Z, Verschraegen C, Thapa R, Mills M, Dibs K, Liveringhouse C, Russell J, Caudell JJ, Tarhini A, Markowitz J, Kendra K, Wu R, Chen DT, Berglund A, Michael L, Aoki M, Wang MH, Hamaidi I, Cheng P, de la Iglesia J, Slebos RJ, Chung CH, Knepper TC, Moran-Segura CM, Nguyen JV, Perez BA, Rose T, Harrison L, Messina JL, Sondak VK, Tsai KY, Khushalani NI, Brohl AS. Combined nivolumab and ipilimumab with or without stereotactic body radiation therapy for advanced Merkel cell carcinoma: a randomised, open label, phase 2 trial. Lancet. 2022 Sep.400(10357):1008-1019. Pubmedid: 36108657. Pmcid: PMC9533323.
      • Srivastava A, Tommasi C, Sessions D, Mah A, Bencomo T, Garcia JM, Jiang T, Lee M, Shen JY, Seow LW, Nguyen A, Rajapakshe K, Coarfa C, Tsai KY, Lopez-Pajares V, Lee CS. MAB21L4 Deficiency Drives Squamous Cell Carcinoma via Activation of RET. Cancer Res. 2022 Sep.82(17):3143-3157. Pubmedid: 35705526. Pmcid: PMC9444977.
      • Shannon AB, Straker RJ, Carr MJ, Sun J, Landa K, Baecher K, Lynch K, Bartels HG, Panchaud R, Keele LJ, Lowe MC, Slingluff CL, Jameson MJ, Tsai KY, Faries MB, Beasley GM, Sondak VK, Karakousis GC, Zager JS, Miura JT. ASO Visual Abstract: An Internally Validated Prognostic Risk Score Model for Disease-Specific Survival in Clinical Stage I and II Merkel Cell Carcinoma. Ann Surg Oncol. 2022 Oct.29(11):7045-7046. Pubmedid: 35896923.
      • Shannon AB, Straker RJ, Carr MJ, Sun J, Landa K, Baecher K, Lynch K, Bartels HG, Panchaud R, Keele LJ, Lowe MC, Slingluff CL, Jameson MJ, Tsai KY, Faries MB, Beasley GM, Sondak VK, Karakousis GC, Zager JS, Miura JT. An Internally Validated Prognostic Risk-Score Model for Disease-Specific Survival in Clinical Stage I and II Merkel Cell Carcinoma. Ann Surg Oncol. 2022 Oct.29(11):7033-7044. Pubmedid: 35867209.
      • Voigt AY, Emiola A, Johnson JS, Fleming ES, Nguyen H, Zhou W, Tsai KY, Fink C, Oh J. Skin Microbiome Variation with Cancer Progression in Human Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma. J Invest Dermatol. 2022 Oct.142(10):2773-2782.e16. Pubmedid: 35390349. Pmcid: PMC9509417.
      • Song X, Chang S, Seminario-Vidal L, de Mingo Pulido A, Tordesillas L, Song X, Reed RA, Harkins A, Whiddon S, Nguyen JV, Moran Segura C, Zhang C, Yoder S, Sayegh Z, Zhao Y, Messina JL, Harro CM, Zhang X, Conejo-Garcia JR, Berglund AE, Sokol L, Zhang J, Rodriguez PC, Mule JJ, Futreal AP, Tsai KY, Chen PL. Genomic and Single-Cell Landscape Reveals Novel Drivers and Therapeutic Vulnerabilities of Transformed Cutaneous T-cell Lymphoma. Cancer Discov. 2022 May.12(5):1294-1313. Pubmedid: 35247891. Pmcid: PMC9148441.
      • Yu X, Cen L, Chen YA, Markowitz J, Shaw TI, Tsai KY, Conejo-Garcia JR, Wang X. Tumor Expression Quantitative Trait Methylation Screening Reveals Distinct CpG Panels for Deconvolving Cancer Immune Signatures. Cancer Res. 2022 May.82(9):1724-1735. Pubmedid: 35176128. Pmcid: PMC9064917.
      • Tsai KY. The Origins of Merkel Cell Carcinoma: Defining Paths to the Neuroendocrine Phenotype. J Invest Dermatol. 2022 Mar.142(3 Pt A):507-509. Pubmedid: 34924186.
      • Chitsazzadeh V, Nguyen TN, de Mingo Pulido A, Bittencourt BB, Du L, Adelmann CH, Rivera IO, Nguyen KA, Guerra LD, Davis A, Napoli M, Ma W, Davis RE, Rajapakshe K, Coarfa C, Flores ER, Tsai KY. miR-181a Promotes Multiple Protumorigenic Functions by Targeting TGFβR3. J Invest Dermatol. 2022 Jul.142(7):1956-1965.e2. Pubmedid: 34890627. Pmcid: PMC9174350.
      • Freischel AR, Teer JK, Luddy K, Cunningham J, Artzy-Randrup Y, Epstein T, Tsai KY, Berglund A, Cleveland JL, Gillies RJ, Brown JS, Gatenby RA. Evolutionary Analysis of TCGA Data Using Over- and Under- Mutated Genes Identify Key Molecular Pathways and Cellular Functions in Lung Cancer Subtypes. Cancers (Basel). 2022 Dec.15(1). Pubmedid: 36612014. Pmcid: PMC9817988.
      • Ospina OE, Wilson CM, Soupir AC, Berglund A, Smalley I, Tsai KY, Fridley B. spatialGE: quantification and visualization of the tumor microenvironment heterogeneity using spatial transcriptomics. Bioinformatics. 2022 Apr.38(9):2645-2647. Pubmedid: 35258565.
      • Gerhardt CA, Krenitsky A, Ravichandran S, Moore S, Tsai KY, Correa-Selm L. Metastatic prostate cancer masquerading as lymphangioma circumscriptum. JAAD Case Rep. 2022 Apr.22:24-26. Pubmedid: 35282158. Pmcid: PMC8904409.
      • Knepper TC, Panchaud RA, Muradova E, Cohen L, DeCaprio JA, Khushalani NI, Tsai KY, Brohl AS. An analysis of the use of targeted therapies in patients with advanced Merkel cell carcinoma and an evaluation of genomic correlates of response. Cancer Med. 2021 Sep.10(17):5889-5896. Pubmedid: 34269527. Pmcid: PMC8419775.
      • Spandau DF, Chen R, Wargo JJ, Rohan CA, Southern D, Zhang A, Loesch M, Weyerbacher J, Tholpady SS, Lewis DA, Kuhar M, Tsai KY, Castellanos AJ, Kemp MG, Markey M, Cates E, Williams AR, Knisely C, Bashir S, Gabbard R, Hoopes R, Travers JB. Randomized controlled trial of fractionated laser resurfacing on aged skin as prophylaxis against actinic neoplasia. J Clin Invest. 2021 Oct.131(19). Pubmedid: 34428179. Pmcid: PMC8483749.
      • Straker RJ, Carr MJ, Sinnamon AJ, Shannon AB, Sun J, Landa K, Baecher KM, Wood C, Lynch K, Bartels HG, Panchaud R, Lowe MC, Slingluff CL, Jameson MJ, Tsai K, Faries MB, Beasley GM, Sondak V, Karakousis GC, Zager JS, Miura JT. Predictors of False Negative Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy in Clinically Localized Merkel Cell Carcinoma. Ann Surg Oncol. 2021 Nov.28(12):6995-7003. Pubmedid: 33890195.
      • Phadke MS, Chen Z, Li J, Mohamed E, Davies MA, Smalley I, Duckett D, Palve V, Czerniecki BJ, Forsyth PA, Noyes D, Adeegbe DO, Eroglu Z, Nguyen KT, Tsai KY, Rix U, Burd CE, Chen YA, Rodriguez PC, Smalley KSM. Targeted Therapy Given after Anti-PD-1 Leads to Prolonged Responses in Mouse Melanoma Models through Sustained Antitumor Immunity. Cancer Immunol Res. 2021 May.9(5):554-567. Pubmedid: 33653716. Pmcid: PMC8102376.
      • Vera O, Bok I, Jasani N, Nakamura K, Xu X, Mecozzi N, Angarita A, Wang K, Tsai KY, Karreth FA. A MAPK/miR-29 Axis Suppresses Melanoma by Targeting MAFG and MYBL2. Cancers (Basel). 2021 Mar.13(6). Pubmedid: 33808771. Pmcid: PMC8003541.
      • Krishnan V, Peng K, Sarode A, Prakash S, Zhao Z, Filippov SK, Todorova K, Sell BR, Lujano O, Bakre S, Pusuluri A, Vogus D, Tsai KY, Mandinova A, Mitragotri S. Hyaluronic acid conjugates for topical treatment of skin cancer lesions. Sci Adv. 2021 Jun.7(24). Pubmedid: 34117055. Pmcid: PMC8195472.
      • Meyer JM, Lee E, Celli A, Park K, Cho R, Lambert W, Pitchford M, Gordon M, Tsai K, Cleaver J, Arron ST, Mauro TM. CERKL is upregulated in cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma and maintains cellular sphingolipids and resistance to oxidative stress. Br J Dermatol. 2021 Jul.185(1):147-152. Pubmedid: 33393080.
      • Muradova E, Patel N, Sell B, Bittencourt BB, Ojeda SS, Adelmann CH, Cen L, Cheng CH, Shen J, Davis CM, Ehli EA, Newberg JY, Cherpelis B, Black MA, Mann MB, Mitragotri S, Tsai KY. Noninvasive Assessment of Epidermal Genomic Markers of UV Exposure in Skin. J Invest Dermatol. 2021 Jan.141(1):124-131.e2. Pubmedid: 32553564. Pmcid: PMC7736225.
      • Amit M, Liu C, Mansour J, Gleber-Netto FO, Tam S, Baruch EN, Aashiq M, El-Naggar AK, Moreno AC, Rosenthal DI, Glisson BS, Ferrarotto R, Wong MK, Tsai K, Flores ER, Migden MR, Silverman DA, Li G, Khanna A, Goepfert RP, Nagarajan P, Weber RS, Myers JN, Gross ND. Elective neck dissection versus observation in patients with head and neck cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. Cancer. 2021 Dec.127(23):4413-4420. Pubmedid: 34358340.
      • Aiderus A, Newberg JY, Guzman-Rojas L, Contreras-Sandoval AM, Meshey AL, Jones DJ, Amaya-Manzanares F, Rangel R, Ward JM, Lee SC, Ban KH, Rogers K, Rogers SM, Selvanesan L, McNoe LA, Copeland NG, Jenkins NA, Tsai KY, Black MA, Mann KM, Mann MB. Transposon mutagenesis identifies cooperating genetic drivers during keratinocyte transformation and cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma progression. PLoS Genet. 2021 Aug.17(8):e1009094. Pubmedid: 34398873. Pmcid: PMC8389471.
      • Wang X, Yu X, Krauthammer M, Hugo W, Duan C, Kanetsky PA, Teer JK, Thompson ZJ, Kalos D, Tsai KY, Smalley KSM, Sondak VK, Chen YA, Conejo-Garcia JR. The Association of MUC16 Mutation with Tumor Mutation Burden and Its Prognostic Implications in Cutaneous Melanoma. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2020 Sep.29(9):1792-1799. Pubmedid: 32611582. Pmcid: PMC7483810.
      • Napoli M, Li X, Ackerman HD, Deshpande AA, Barannikov I, Pisegna MA, Bedrosian I, Mitsch J, Quinlan P, Thompson A, Rajapakshe K, Coarfa C, Gunaratne PH, Marchion DC, Magliocco AM, Tsai KY, Flores ER. Pan-cancer analysis reveals TAp63-regulated oncogenic lncRNAs that promote cancer progression through AKT activation. Nat Commun. 2020 Oct.11(1):5156. Pubmedid: 33056990. Pmcid: PMC7561725.
      • Nguyen TN, Rajapakshe K, Nicholas C, Tordesillas L, Ehli EA, Davis CM, Coarfa C, Flores ER, Dickinson SE, Curiel-Lewandrowski C, Tsai KY. Integrative transcriptomic analysis for linking acute stress responses to squamous cell carcinoma development. Sci Rep. 2020 Oct.10(1):17209. Pubmedid: 33057049. Pmcid: PMC7560606.
      • Davis AJ, Tsinkevich M, Rodencal J, Abbas HA, Su XH, Gi YJ, Fang B, Rajapakshe K, Coarfa C, Gunaratne PH, Koomen JM, Tsai KY, Flores ER. TAp63-Regulated miRNAs Suppress Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma through Inhibition of a Network of Cell-Cycle Genes. Cancer Res. 2020 Jun.80(12):2484-2497. Pubmedid: 32156775. Pmcid: PMC7299759.
      • Flemming JP, Hill BL, Haque MW, Raad J, Bonder CS, Harshyne LA, Rodeck U, Luginbuhl A, Wahl JK, Tsai KY, Wermuth PJ, Overmiller AM, Mahoney MG. miRNA- and cytokine-associated extracellular vesicles mediate squamous cell carcinomas. J Extracell Vesicles. 2020 Jul.9(1):1790159. Pubmedid: 32944178. Pmcid: PMC7480578.
      • Meyer JM, Lee E, Celli A, Park K, Cho R, Lambert W, Pitchford M, Gordon M, Tsai K, Cleaver J, Arron ST, Mauro TM. CERKL is Upregulated in Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma and Maintains Cellular Sphingolipids and Resistance to Oxidative Stress. Br J Dermatol. 2020 Dec. Pubmedid: 33270220. Pmcid: PMC8172666.
      • Gatenby RA, Avdieiev S, Tsai KY, Brown JS. Integrating genetic and nongenetic drivers of somatic evolution during carcinogenesis: The biplane model. Evol Appl. 2020 Aug.13(7):1651-1659. Pubmedid: 32952610. Pmcid: PMC7484850.
      • Sammons RM, Ghose R, Tsai KY, Dalby KN. Targeting ERK beyond the boundaries of the kinase active site in melanoma. Mol Carcinogen. 2019 Sep.58(9):1551-1570. Pubmedid: 31190430. Pmcid: PMC7107758.
      • Cohen L, Tsai KY. Molecular and immune targets for Merkel cell carcinoma therapy and prevention. Mol Carcinogen. 2019 Sep.58(9):1602-1611. Pubmedid: 31116890.
      • Knepper TC, Montesion M, Russell JS, Sokol ES, Frampton GM, Miller VA, Albacker LA, McLeod HL, Eroglu Z, Khushalani NI, Sondak VK, Messina JL, Schell MJ, DeCaprio JA, Tsai KY, Brohl AS. The Genomic Landscape of Merkel Cell Carcinoma and Clinicogenomic Biomarkers of Response to Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor Therapy. Clin Cancer Res. 2019 Oct.25(19):5961-5971. Pubmedid: 31399473. Pmcid: PMC6774882.
      • Kaoud TS, Johnson WH, Ebelt ND, Piserchio A, Zamora-Olivares D, Van Ravenstein SX, Pridgen JR, Edupuganti R, Sammons R, Cano M, Warthaka M, Harger M, Tavares CDJ, Park J, Radwan MF, Ren P, Anslyn EV, Tsai KY, Ghose R, Dalby KN. Modulating multi-functional ERK complexes by covalent targeting of a recruitment site in vivo. Nat Commun. 2019 Nov.10(1):5232. Pubmedid: 31745079. Pmcid: PMC6863825.
      • Du L, Anderson A, Nguyen K, Ojeda SS, Ortiz-Rivera I, Nguyen TN, Zhang T, Kaoud TS, Gray NS, Dalby KN, Tsai KY. JNK2 Is Required for the Tumorigenic Properties of Melanoma Cells. Acs Chem Biol. 2019 Jul.14(7):1426-1435. Pubmedid: 31063355. Pmcid: PMC7181303.
      • Thyagarajan A, Tsai KY, Sahu RP. MicroRNA heterogeneity in melanoma progression. Semin Cancer Biol. 2019 Dec.59:208-220. Pubmedid: 31163254. Pmcid: PMC6885122.
      • Voigt AY, Michaud M, Tsai KY, Oh J, Sundberg JP. Differential Hairless Mouse Strain-Specific Susceptibility to Skin Cancer and Sunburn. J Invest Dermatol. 2019 Aug.139(8):1837-1840.e3. Pubmedid: 30742806. Pmcid: PMC6650314.
      • Abbas H, Bao Bui NH, Rajapakshe K, Wong J, Gunaratne P, Tsai KY, Coarfa C, Flores ER. Distinct TP63 Isoform-Driven Transcriptional Signatures Predict Tumor Progression and Clinical Outcomes. Cancer Res. 2018 Jan.78(2):451-462. Pubmedid: 29180475. Pmcid: PMC5771893.
      • Cho RJ, Alexandrov LB, den Breems NY, Atanasova VS, Farshchian M, Purdom E, Nguyen TN, Coarfa C, Rajapakshe K, Prisco M, Sahu J, Tassone P, Greenawalt EJ, Collisson EA, Wu W, Yao H, Su X, Guttmann-Gruber C, Hofbauer JP, Hashmi R, Fuentes I, Benz SC, Golovato J, Ehli EA, Davis CM, Davies GE, Covington KR, Murrell DF, Salas-Alanis JC, Palisson F, Bruckner AL, Robinson W, Has C, Bruckner-Tuderman L, Titeux M, Jonkman MF, Rashidghamat E, Lwin SM, Mellerio JE, McGrath JA, Bauer JW, Hovnanian A, Tsai KY, South AP. APOBEC mutation drives early-onset squamous cell carcinomas in recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa. Sci Transl Med. 2018 Aug.10(455). Pubmedid: 30135250.
      • Campbell JD, Yau C, Bowlby R, Liu Y, Brennan K, Fan H, Taylor AM, Wang C, Walter V, Akbani R, Byers LA, Creighton CJ, Coarfa C, Shih J, Cherniack AD, Gevaert O, Prunello M, Shen H, Anur P, Chen J, Cheng H, Hayes DN, Bullman S, Pedamallu CS, Ojesina AI, Sadeghi S, Mungall KL, Robertson AG, Benz C, Schultz A, Kanchi RS, Gay CM, Hegde A, Diao L, Wang J, Ma W, Sumazin P, Chiu HS, Chen TW, Gunaratne P, Donehower L, Rader JS, Zuna R, Al-Ahmadie H, Lazar AJ, Flores ER, Tsai KY, Zhou JH, Rustgi AK, Drill E, Shen R, Wong CK, Stuart JM, Laird PW, Hoadley KA, Weinstein JN, Peto M, Pickering CR, Chen Z, Van Waes C. Genomic, Pathway Network, and Immunologic Features Distinguishing Squamous Carcinomas. Cell Rep. 2018 Apr.23(1):194-212.e6. Pubmedid: 29617660. Pmcid: PMC6002769.
      • Ku AT, Shaver TM, Rao AS, Howard JM, Rodriguez CN, Miao Q, Garcia G, Le D, Yang D, Borowiak M, Cohen DN, Chitsazzadeh V, Diwan AH, Tsai KY, Nguyen H. TCF7L1 promotes skin tumorigenesis independently of β-catenin through induction of LCN2. Elife. 2017 May.6. Pubmedid: 28467300. Pmcid: PMC5438253.
      • Fiziev P, Akdemir KC, Miller JP, Keung EZ, Samant NS, Sharma S, Natale CA, Terranova CJ, Maitituoheti M, Amin SB, Martinez-Ledesma E, Dhamdhere M, Axelrad JB, Shah A, Cheng CS, Mahadeshwar H, Seth S, Barton MC, Protopopov A, Tsai KY, Davies MA, Garcia BA, Amit I, Chin L, Ernst J, Rai K. Systematic Epigenomic Analysis Reveals Chromatin States Associated with Melanoma Progression. Cell Rep. 2017 Apr.19(4):875-889. Pubmedid: 28445736. Pmcid: PMC5473172.
      • Adelmann CH, Truong KA, Liang RJ, Bansal V, Gandee L, Saporito R, Lee W, Du L, Nicholas C, Napoli M, Mino B, South AP, Proby CM, Leigh IM, Coarfa C, Flores ER, Tsai KY. MEK Is a Therapeutic and Chemopreventative Target in Squamous Cell Carcinoma. J Invest Dermatol. 2016 Sep.136(9):1920-1924. Pubmedid: 27293029. Pmcid: PMC5303342.
      • Tsai KY. The preneoplastic genome: transcriptomic drivers of squamous cell carcinoma development. Dermatol Online J. 2016 Sep.22(9). Pubmedid: 28329662.
      • Adelmann CH, Ching G, Du L, Saporito RC, Bansal V, Pence LJ, Liang R, Lee W, Tsai KY. Comparative profiles of BRAF inhibitors: the paradox index as a predictor of clinical toxicity. Oncotarget. 2016 May.7(21):30453-30460. Pubmedid: 27028853. Pmcid: PMC5058692.
      • Feldmeyer L, Ching G, Vin H, Ma W, Bansal V, Chitsazzadeh V, Jahan-Tigh R, Chu EY, Fuller P, Maiti S, Davis RE, Cooper LJ, Tsai KY. Differential T-cell subset representation in cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma arising in immunosuppressed versus immunocompetent individuals. Exp Dermatol. 2016 Mar.25(3):245-247. Pubmedid: 26475987.
      • Napoli M, Venkatanarayan A, Raulji P, Meyers BA, Norton W, Mangala LS, Sood AK, Rodriguez-Aguayo C, Lopez-Berestein G, Vin H, Duvic M, Tetzlaff MB, Curry JL, Rook AH, Abbas HA, Coarfa C, Gunaratne PH, Tsai KY, Flores ER. ΔNp63/DGCR8-Dependent MicroRNAs Mediate Therapeutic Efficacy of HDAC Inhibitors in Cancer. Cancer Cell. 2016 Jun.29(6):874-888. Pubmedid: 27300436. Pmcid: PMC4908836.
      • Tsai KY, Hawk ET. When "Effective" Prevention Agents Fail to Elicit Anticipated Effects: Challenges in Trial Design. Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2016 Feb.9(2):125-127. Pubmedid: 26714773.
      • Chitsazzadeh V, Coarfa C, Drummond JA, Nguyen T, Joseph A, Chilukuri S, Charpiot E, Adelmann CH, Ching G, Nguyen TN, Nicholas C, Thomas VD, Migden M, MacFarlane D, Thompson E, Shen J, Takata Y, McNiece K, Polansky MA, Abbas HA, Rajapakshe K, Gower A, Spira A, Covington KR, Xiao W, Gunaratne P, Pickering C, Frederick M, Myers JN, Shen L, Yao H, Su X, Rapini RP, Wheeler DA, Hawk ET, Flores ER, Tsai KY. Cross-species identification of genomic drivers of squamous cell carcinoma development across preneoplastic intermediates. Nat Commun. 2016 Aug.7:12601. Pubmedid: 27574101. Pmcid: PMC5013636.
      • Venkatanarayan A, Raulji P, Norton W, Chakravarti D, Coarfa C, Su X, Sandur SK, Ramirez MS, Lee J, Kingsley CV, Sananikone EF, Rajapakshe K, Naff K, Parker-Thornburg J, Bankson JA, Tsai KY, Gunaratne PH, Flores ER. IAPP-driven metabolic reprogramming induces regression of p53-deficient tumours in vivo. Nature. 2015 Jan.517(7536):626-630. Pubmedid: 25409149. Pmcid: PMC4312210.
      • Warthaka M, Adelmann CH, Kaoud TS, Edupuganti R, Yan C, Johnson WH, Ferguson S, Tavares CD, Pence LJ, Anslyn EV, Ren P, Tsai KY, Dalby KN. Quantification of a Pharmacodynamic ERK End Point in Melanoma Cell Lysates: Toward Personalized Precision Medicine. ACS Med Chem Lett. 2015 Jan.6(1):47-52. Pubmedid: 25589929. Pmcid: PMC4291693.
      • Amaravadi RK, Hamilton KE, Ma X, Piao S, Portillo AD, Nathanson KL, Carlino MS, Long GV, Puzanov I, Xu X, Morrissette JJ, Tsai KY, Flaherty KT, Sosman JA, Goodman GR, McArthur GA, Rustgi AK, Metz DC, Schuchter LM, Chapman PB, Sepulveda AR. Multiple Gastrointestinal Polyps in Patients Treated with BRAF Inhibitors. Clin Cancer Res. 2015 Dec.21(23):5215-5221. Pubmedid: 26202952. Pmcid: PMC4668213.
      • Maresso KC, Tsai KY, Brown PH, Szabo E, Lippman S, Hawk ET. Molecular cancer prevention: Current status and future directions. CA-Cancer J Clin. 2015 Dec.65(5):345-383. Pubmedid: 26284997. Pmcid: PMC4820069.
      • Watson IR, Li L, Cabeceiras PK, Mahdavi M, Gutschner T, Genovese G, Wang G, Fang Z, Tepper JM, Stemke-Hale K, Tsai KY, Davies MA, Mills GB, Chin L. The RAC1 P29S hotspot mutation in melanoma confers resistance to pharmacological inhibition of RAF. Cancer Res. 2014 Sep.74(17):4845-4852. Pubmedid: 25056119. Pmcid: PMC4167745.
      • Fowler NH, Davis RE, Rawal S, Nastoupil L, Hagemeister FB, McLaughlin P, Kwak LW, Romaguera JE, Fanale MA, Fayad LE, Westin JR, Shah J, Orlowski RZ, Wang M, Turturro F, Oki Y, Claret LC, Feng L, Baladandayuthapani V, Muzzafar T, Tsai KY, Samaniego F, Neelapu SS. Safety and activity of lenalidomide and rituximab in untreated indolent lymphoma: an open-label, phase 2 trial. Lancet Oncol. 2014 Nov.15(12):1311-1318. Pubmedid: 25439689. Pmcid: PMC4370362.
      • Pattanaprichakul P, Tetzlaff MT, Lapolla WJ, Torres-Cabala CA, Duvic M, Prieto VG, Tsai KY, Curry JL. Sweet syndrome following vemurafenib therapy for recurrent cholangiocarcinoma. J Cutan Pathol. 2014 Mar.41(3):326-328. Pubmedid: 24372055.
      • Curry JL, Torres-Cabala CA, Kim KB, Tetzlaff MT, Duvic M, Tsai KY, Hong DS, Prieto VG. Dermatologic toxicities to targeted cancer therapy: shared clinical and histologic adverse skin reactions. Int J Dermatol. 2014 Mar.53(3):376-384. Pubmedid: 23879247.
      • Tsai KY. Precision medicine. Semin Cutan Med Surg. 2014 Jun.33(2):59. Pubmedid: 25085662.
      • Curry JL, Tetzlaff MT, Nicholson K, Duvic M, Kim KB, Tsai KY, Hwu WJ, Hong DS, Prieto VG, Torres-Cabala CA. Histological features associated with vemurafenib-induced skin toxicities: examination of 141 cutaneous lesions biopsied during therapy. Am J Dermatopathxxx. 2014 Jul.36(7):557-561. Pubmedid: 24950418.
      • Ma Q, Li D, Carreño R, Patenia R, Tsai KY, Xydes-Smith M, Alousi AM, Champlin RE, Sale GE, Afshar-Kharghan V. Complement component C3 mediates Th1/Th17 polarization in human T-cell activation and cutaneous GVHD. Bone Marrow Transplant. 2014 Jul.49(7):972-976. Pubmedid: 24777193. Pmcid: PMC4410869.
      • Vin H, Ching G, Ojeda SS, Adelmann CH, Chitsazzadeh V, Dwyer DW, Ma H, Ehrenreiter K, Baccarini M, Ruggieri R, Curry JL, Ciurea AM, Duvic M, Busaidy NL, Tannir NM, Tsai KY. Sorafenib suppresses JNK-dependent apoptosis through inhibition of ZAK. Mol Cancer Ther. 2014 Jan.13(1):221-229. Pubmedid: 24170769. Pmcid: PMC4366425.
      • Chakravarti D, Su X, Cho MS, Bui NH, Coarfa C, Venkatanarayan A, Benham AL, Flores González RE, Alana J, Xiao W, Leung ML, Vin H, Chan IL, Aquino A, Müller N, Wang H, Cooney AJ, Parker-Thornburg J, Tsai KY, Gunaratne PH, Flores ER. Induced multipotency in adult keratinocytes through down-regulation of ΔNp63 or DGCR8. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Feb.111(5):E572-E581. Pubmedid: 24449888. Pmcid: PMC3918754.
      • Pickering CR, Zhou JH, Lee JJ, Drummond JA, Peng SA, Saade RE, Tsai KY, Curry JL, Tetzlaff MT, Lai SY, Yu J, Muzny DM, Doddapaneni H, Shinbrot E, Covington KR, Zhang J, Seth S, Caulin C, Clayman GL, El-Naggar AK, Gibbs RA, Weber RS, Myers JN, Wheeler DA, Frederick MJ. Mutational landscape of aggressive cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. Clin Cancer Res. 2014 Dec.20(24):6582-6592. Pubmedid: 25303977. Pmcid: PMC4367811.
      • Tsai KY, Nowroozi S, Kim KB. Drug safety evaluation of vemurafenib in the treatment of melanoma. Expert Opin Drug Saf. 2013 Sep.12(5):767-775. Pubmedid: 23800008.
      • Hwang BH, Tsai KY, Mitragotri S. Optimized lysis buffer reagents for solubilization and preservation of proteins from cells and tissues. Drug Deliv Transl Res. 2013 Oct.3(5):428-436. Pubmedid: 25788351.
      • Vin H, Ojeda SS, Ching G, Leung ML, Chitsazzadeh V, Dwyer DW, Adelmann CH, Restrepo M, Richards KN, Stewart LR, Du L, Ferguson SB, Chakravarti D, Ehrenreiter K, Baccarini M, Ruggieri R, Curry JL, Kim KB, Ciurea AM, Duvic M, Prieto VG, Ullrich SE, Dalby KN, Flores ER, Tsai KY. BRAF inhibitors suppress apoptosis through off-target inhibition of JNK signaling. Elife. 2013 Nov.2:e00969. Pubmedid: 24192036. Pmcid: PMC3814616.
      • Paliwal S, Hwang BH, Tsai KY, Mitragotri S. Diagnostic opportunities based on skin biomarkers. Eur J Pharm Sci. 2013 Dec.50(5):546-556. Pubmedid: 23159445.
      • Su X, Gi YJ, Chakravarti D, Chan IL, Zhang A, Xia X, Tsai KY, Flores ER. TAp63 is a master transcriptional regulator of lipid and glucose metabolism. Cell Metab. 2012 Oct.16(4):511-525. Pubmedid: 23040072. Pmcid: PMC3483083.
      • Hwang BH, Doshi N, Tsai KY, Mitragotri S. A reagent to facilitate protein recovery from cells and tissues. Drug Deliv Transl Res. 2012 Oct.2(5):297-304. Pubmedid: 25787172.
      • Matthias N, Lockworth CR, Zhang F, Lee MH, Yeung SC, Tsai KY, Hamir AN. Multiple cystic sweat gland tumors in transgenic mice. Comp Med. 2012 Feb.62(1):27-30. Pubmedid: 22330648. Pmcid: PMC3276389.
      • Rangwala S, Tsai KY. Roles of the immune system in skin cancer. Br J Dermatol. 2011 Nov.165(5):953-965. Pubmedid: 21729024. Pmcid: PMC3197980.
      • Silapunt S, Jordon RE, Piao Y, Tsai KY. Kaposi sarcoma presenting as a cutaneous horn. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2011 Feb.64(2):447-448. Pubmedid: 21238839.
      • Bergman H, Tsai KY, Seo SJ, Kvedar JC, Watson AJ. Remote assessment of acne: the use of acne grading tools to evaluate digital skin images. Telemed E-Health. 2009 Jun.15(5):426-430. Pubmedid: 19548822.
      • Su X, Paris M, Gi YJ, Tsai KY, Cho MS, Lin YL, Biernaskie JA, Sinha S, Prives C, Pevny LH, Miller FD, Flores ER. TAp63 prevents premature aging by promoting adult stem cell maintenance. Cell Stem Cell. 2009 Jul.5(1):64-75. Pubmedid: 19570515. Pmcid: PMC3418222.
      • Yang G, Thieu K, Tsai KY, Piris A, Udayakumar D, Njauw CN, Ramoni MF, Tsao H. Dynamic gene expression analysis links melanocyte growth arrest with nevogenesis. Cancer Res. 2009 Dec.69(23):9029-9037. Pubmedid: 19903842.
      • Tucker JD, Shah S, Jarell AD, Tsai KY, Zembowicz A, Kroshinsky D. Lues maligna in early HIV infection case report and review of the literature. Sex Transm Dis. 2009 Aug.36(8):512-514. Pubmedid: 19455078.
      • Davis TL, Mandal RV, Bevona C, Tsai KY, Moschella SL, Staszewski R, Zembowicz A. Collagenous vasculopathy: a report of three cases. J Cutan Pathol. 2008 Oct.35(10):967-970. Pubmedid: 18537865.
      • Tsai KY. Systemic adjuvant therapy for patients with high-risk melanoma. Arch Dermatol. 2007 Jun.143(6):779-782. Pubmedid: 17576946.
      • Niendorf KB, Goggins W, Yang G, Tsai KY, Shennan M, Bell DW, Sober AJ, Hogg D, Tsao H. MELPREDICT: a logistic regression model to estimate CDKN2A carrier probability. J Med Genet. 2006 Jun.43(6):501-506. Pubmedid: 16169933. Pmcid: PMC2564534.
      • Tsai KY. Evidence-based medicine: do we use guidelines or mindlines? Commentary on: Evidence-based guidelines or collectively constructed "mindlines?" ethnographic study of knowledge management in primary care. Gabbay J, le May G BMJ. 2004;329:1013. Arch Dermatol. 2005 Jun.141(6):773-774. Pubmedid: 15967926.
      • Tsai KY, MacPherson D, Rubinson DA, Crowley D, Jacks T. ARF is not required for apoptosis in Rb mutant mouse embryos. Curr Biol. 2002 Jan.12(2):159-163. Pubmedid: 11818069.
      • Tsai KY, MacPherson D, Rubinson DA, Nikitin AY, Bronson R, Mercer KL, Crowley D, Jacks T. ARF mutation accelerates pituitary tumor development in Rb+/- mice. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2002 Dec.99(26):16865-16870. Pubmedid: 12486224. Pmcid: PMC139235.
      • Flores ER, Tsai KY, Crowley D, Sengupta S, Yang A, McKeon F, Jacks T. p63 and p73 are required for p53-dependent apoptosis in response to DNA damage. Nature. 2002 Apr.416(6880):560-564. Pubmedid: 11932750.
      • Geng Y, Yu Q, Whoriskey W, Dick F, Tsai KY, Ford HL, Biswas DK, Pardee AB, Amati B, Jacks T, Richardson A, Dyson N, Sicinski P. Expression of cyclins E1 and E2 during mouse development and in neoplasia. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2001 Nov.98(23):13138-13143. Pubmedid: 11687642. Pmcid: PMC60837.
      • Boyd SD, Tsai KY, Jacks T. An intact HDM2 RING-finger domain is required for nuclear exclusion of p53. Nat Cell Biol. 2000 Sep.2(9):563-568. Pubmedid: 10980695.
      • Irwin M, Marin MC, Phillips AC, Seelan RS, Smith DI, Liu W, Flores ER, Tsai KY, Jacks T, Vousden KH, Kaelin WG. Role for the p53 homologue p73 in E2F-1-induced apoptosis. Nature. 2000 Oct.407(6804):645-648. Pubmedid: 11034215.
      • Alenghat FJ, Fabry B, Tsai KY, Goldmann WH, Ingber DE. Analysis of cell mechanics in single vinculin-deficient cells using a magnetic tweezer. Biochem Bioph Res Co. 2000 Oct.277(1):93-99. Pubmedid: 11027646.
      • Tsai KY, Hu Y, Macleod KF, Crowley D, Yamasaki L, Jacks T. Mutation of E2f-1 suppresses apoptosis and inappropriate S phase entry and extends survival of Rb-deficient mouse embryos. Mol Cell. 1998 Sep.2(3):293-304. Pubmedid: 9774968.
      • Lee KM, Tsai KY, Wang N, Ingber DE. Extracellular matrix and pulmonary hypertension: control of vascular smooth muscle cell contractility. Am J Physiol. 1998 Jan.274(1):H76-H82. Pubmedid: 9458854.
      • Carnevale NT, Tsai KY, Claiborne BJ, Brown TH. Comparative electrotonic analysis of three classes of rat hippocampal neurons. J Neurophysiol. 1997 Aug.78(2):703-720. Pubmedid: 9307106.
      • Hoffmann RE, Buchsbaum MS, Jensen RV, Guich SM, Tsai K, Nuechterlein KH. Dimensional complexity of EEG waveforms in neuroleptic-free schizophrenic patients and normal control subjects. J Neuropsych Clin N. 1996.8(4):436-441. Pubmedid: 9116481.
      • Mays R, Curry J, Kim K, Tsai K, Arora A, Khan F, Ramirez-Fort M, Ciurea A. Eruptive squamous cell carcinomas after vemurafenib therapy. J Cutan Med Surg. 17(6):419-422. Pubmedid: 24138980.
    • Grants

      • Title: Treatment of Advanced Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma with Combination Immunotherapy
        Sponsor: Incyte, Inc.
        PI: Tsai, K.
      • Title: Credentialing a Mouse Model for Merkel Cell Carcinoma
        Sponsor: US Army
        PI: Tsai, K.
      • Title: Deploying a Novel Model of Merkel Cell Carcinoma for Development of Novel Therapeutic Approaches
        Sponsor: US Army
        PI: Tsai, K.
      • Title: Identifying Mechanisms of Resistance to Immunotherapy for Merkel Cell Carcinoma
        Sponsor: V Fdtn for Cancer Research
        PI: Tsai, K.
      • Title: Eco-Evolutionary Drivers of Clonal Dynamics During UV-Induced Skin Carcinogenesis (PQ3)
        Sponsor: Nat Institutes of Health
        PI (Contact): Tsai, K., PI (MPI): Brown, J.

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