Chen Liu, MD, PhD, joined the School of Medicine as chair of the Department of Pathology and the Anthony N. Brady Professor of Pathology on March 1. He is also chief of Pathology at Yale New Haven Hospital.
“It is a pleasure to welcome Dr. Liu as chair of the Department of Pathology,” said Nancy J. Brown, MD, Jean and David W. Wallace Dean of Medicine and C.N.H. Long Professor of Internal Medicine. “Chen has an established track record of leadership and innovation, and he will undoubtedly build on the many strengths of the department under Dr. Jon Morrow. I am grateful to Dr. Jennifer McNiff for her role in facilitating a smooth transition.”
Liu arrived at Yale from Rutgers University, where since 2015 he was professor and chair of pathology, immunology, and laboratory medicine at New Jersey Medical School and Robert Wood Johnson (RWJ) Medical School and chair of the Center for Dermatology at RWJ Medical School. He was also chief of service at University Hospital in Newark and RWJ University Hospital in New Brunswick and chief of the Division of Oncological Pathology at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. Before his appointments at Rutgers, he was professor and vice chair of pathology, immunology and laboratory medicine at the University of Florida, where he also held an endowed chair in gastrointestinal and liver research.
Under Liu’s leadership, Rutgers acquired an additional nine hospital pathology diagnostic lab services, integrated them into the academic departments, and established collaborations with New Jersey and local governments through management of their pathology and laboratory services. Liu also established the Immunology Division, the Center for Medical Microbiology, and the Center for the Studies of Stillbirth and Early Infant Death. During his brief tenure the Department of Pathology doubled the number of its faculty and significantly increased clinical revenue and NIH funding.
An expert in viral hepatitis, liver cancer immunotherapy, graft-versus-host disease, and cancer epigenetics, Liu has several patents and pending applications for his research, which focuses on the epigenetic drivers that cause liver cancer in a virally infected or alcohol-exposed liver. His work, which has contributed to the understanding of liver cancer carcinogenesis and biomarker discovery for early diagnosis and therapeutic targets, has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other agencies since 2003.
At Yale, he said he will build upon the department’s excellent reputation, which he attributes to its world-class-faculty and staff. “We have great scientists who will do even more fundamental and original research,” he said, noting the importance of attracting qualified MD/PhD trainees and medical students into pathology. Since there is a national shortage of physician scientists, he hopes to contribute to the critical mass in the field. He is also committed to alignment between the School of Medicine and Yale New Haven Health with the goal of providing exceptional patient-centered care.