Zhilei Chen, PhD
Just like medicinal chemistry, which shaped drug discovery in the 20th century, the field of protein therapeutics is positioned to lead drug discovery in the 21st century. A key strength of proteins as therapeutics is the ability to serve a highly specific and complex set of functions that cannot be mimicked by simple chemical compounds. Since the first recombinant protein therapeutic – human insulin – was introduced over 30 years ago, protein therapeutics have assumed a significant role in medicine.
The Chen Medicinal Protein Lab aims to accelerate the discovery, development and clinical translation of protein therapeutics through innovative protein engineering research. We believe that better medicine enables a higher quality of living, and protein engineers are charged to create the better medicine for today and tomorrow. We are particularly interested in the creation and engineering of affordable protein therapeutics to prevent and treat infectious diseases.
We draw talents from diverse fields ranging from medicine and biology to chemistry and engineering, and integrate tools from genetics, virology, immunology and imaging fields in order to create and engineer proteins for therapeutic application.