Research Group Lab Hall

Pharmacology and Toxicology


Donghai Xiong, PhD

Assistant Professor


  • Pharmacology and Toxicology

Contact Information


General Interests

Cancer Pharmacology, DNA Sequences, and Human Genome


PhD, Biomedical Sciences, Creighton University, 2007

Research Interests

Exons are short, functionally important sequences of DNA which represent the regions in genes that are translated into protein. It is estimated that the protein coding regions of the human genome constitute about 85% of the disease-causing mutations. Exome sequencing has taken center stage in cancer profiling. My primary research interest is to utilize this state-of-the-art technology to analyze multiple tumor-normal pairs to identify the genes underlying lung cancer. Currently we have finished whole exome sequencing and analysis of 14 samples taken from both the lung cancer tissue and the adjacent normal tissue from each of the seven lung cancer subjects. By comparing the genetic variants called from tumor and normal samples, we identified a pool of candidate genes associated with lung cancer. We are also collaborating with TCGA (The Cancer Genome Atlas) to analyze additional 81 samples from 43 lung cancer patients using exome sequencing technology. The follow-up molecular validation of the identified genetic variants underlying lung cancer is also ongoing. Our aim is to find and confirm as many as possible the somatic mutations associated with lung cancer. I am particularly interested in developing and applying multiple statistical methods for the fast and robust identification of genetic mutations underlying human cancer.