Techung Lee PhD

Techung Lee

Techung Lee

Associate Professor

Department of Biochemistry

Jacobs School of Medicine & Biomedical Sciences

Specialty/Research Focus

Cell growth, differentiation and development; Gene Expression; Molecular Basis of Disease; Signal Transduction

Contact Information
351 BRB
3435 Main Street
Buffalo, New York 14214
Phone: (716) 8293106
Fax: (716) 8293106

Professional Summary:

Research in my laboratory has been focused on molecular signaling mechanisms in fatty liver pathogenesis and heart failure. These processes are mediated by several cross-talk pathways involving intracellular and extracellular mediators such as Wnts, sFRPs, VEGF, JAK/STAT3, and phosphoglucose isomerase (PGI). We have explored the immunomodulatory property of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in our cell transplantation studies, and found that MSCs improve cardiac function in the porcine myocardial ischemia and hamster heart failure models. We have identified secreted PGI as a diagnostic biomarker for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and developed a robust PGI enzyme assay method for NAFLD detection. My long-term goal is to generate clinically relevant strategies that may be used for disease diagnosis and therapy for a broad spectrum of human diseases. In addition to the research endeavor, my laboratory maintains Biomedical Research Service ( that provides innovative reagents for the life science community and pharmaceutical industry.

Education and Training:

  • PhD, Microbiology and Immunology, Virginia Commonwealth University (1989)
  • MS, M.S. in Biochemistry, National Taiwan University (1983)
  • BS, Botany, National Taiwan University (1981)


  • Associate Professor, Biochemistry, SUNY at Buffalo Jacobs School of Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (1999-present)
  • Assistant Professor, Biochemistry, SUNY at Buffalo Jacobs School of Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (1993-present)
  • Research Associate, Cell Biology, Baylor College of Medicine (1990-present)
  • Instructor, Cell Biology, Baylor College of Medicine (1992)

Awards and Honors:

  • Siegel Teaching Recognition (2020)
  • Siegel Teaching Recognition (2018)
  • Siegel Teaching Award (2013)
  • STOR Recognition (2013)
  • STOR Recognition (2010)
  • Siegel Teaching Recognition (2004)

Research Expertise:

  • Cell and Molecular Biology
  • Human metabolism and nutrition

Grants and Sponsored Research:

  • August 1996–November 2015
    Chronic Adaptations to Myocardial Ischemia
    Role: Co-Investigator
  • January 2006–January 2012
    NIH National Heart Lung and Blood Institute:Mesenchymal Stem Cell Therapeutics in Hibernating Myocardium
    NIH National Heart Lung and Blood Institute
    Role: Principal Investigator
  • March 2006–February 2011
    Mesenchymal stem therapeutics in hibernating myocardium
    Role: Co-Investigator
  • April 2008–March 2009
    Rejuvenation and regulation of adult stem cells y cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (Cdk1)
    New York State Stem Cell Board
    Role: Principal Investigator
  • January 2001–March 2002
    Calpain Regulation in Muscle Cells
    Role: Principal Investigator
  • January 1998–December 2001
    Calcium-regulated proteolysis in cardiomyocyte apoptosis
    Role: Co-Investigator
  • January 1995–December 1997
    Molecular mechanisms of muscle cell growth and differentiation
    Role: Principal Investigator
  • July 1994–June 1996
    Transcriptional mechanisms governing protooncogene expression in cultured cardiac myocytes
    Role: Principal Investigator


  • Stem cell material and method of use A method to immortalize bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (2011)

Journal Articles:

See all (16 more)


  • Camila Sabatini, Techung Lee. (2023) Novel Odontogenic Potential of Secreted Frizzled-Related Protein 2 (sFRP2). American Association for Dental, Oral, and Craniofacial Research. Portland, Oregon (Apr), (3822210) Oral
  • Huey Lin, Xunyu Liu, Lixin Zhu, Susan S. Baker, Robert D. Baker, Techung Lee. (2020) Induction of tissue inhibitors of matrix metalloproteinases (TIMPs) in NASH and regulation of dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) by TIMPs. Hepatology 72:1051A (Supplement), 2020, AASLD The Liver Meeting (web format). (Nov) 1051A, (1724) Poster
  • Lee TC, Bradley ME & Walowitz JL. (1900) Influence of promoter potency on the transcriptional effects of YY1, SRF, and Msx-1 in transient transfection analysis. Nucl. Acid Res., (Jan) 3215-3220
  • Hiltke TR, Lee TC & Bobek LA. (1900) Inhibitory profiles of human recombinant cystatins C and SN on several known cysteine proteinases. J. Dental Res., (Jan) 1401-1409
  • Chen, S. -J., Lee, T. -C. & Tung, T. -C. (1900) Interferon induction in inbred Balb/c mice by Abrus Agglutinin. Bull. Chinese Oncology Soc., (Jan) 33-38
  • Lee TC, French B, Moss J, Sands A & Schwartz RJ. (1900) Regulation of avian sarcomeric a-actin genes by myogenic helix-loop-helix regulatory factors, serum response factors and F-ACT1. Keystone Symposia on Molecular and Cellular Biology, (Jan)
  • Lee, TC & Schwartz, RJ. (1900) Using protease to avoid false identification of protein-DNA complexes in gel shift assays. BioTechniques, (Jan) 486-490
  • Lee TC, Chow KL, Fang P, Schwartz RJ. (1900) Activation of skeletal a-actin gene transcription: The cooperative formation of serum response factor-binding complexes over positive cis-acting promoter serum response elements displaces a negative-acting nuclear factor enriched in replicating myoblasts. Mol. Cell. Biol., (Jan) 5090-5100
  • Mampuru LJ, Chen SJ, Kalenik JL, Bradley ME & Lee TC. (1900) Analysis of events associated with serum deprivation-induced apoptosis in C3H/Sol8 muscle satellite cells. Exp. Cell Res., (Jan) 372-380
  • Lee, TC, Zhang, Y & Schwartz, RJ. (1900) Bifunctional transcriptional properties of YY1 in regulating oncogene and muscle actin gene transcription. Oncogenes, (Jan) 1047-1052
  • Chen SJ, Bradley ME & Lee TC. (1900) Chemical hypoxia triggers apoptosis of cultured neonatal rat cardiac myocytes: Modulation by calcium-regulated proteases and protein kinases. Mol. Cell. Biochem., (Jan) 141-149
  • Woover SK, Barrett SK, Lee TC & Bear HD. (1900) Cyclophosphamide and abrogation of tumor-induced suppressor-T cells activity. Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy, (Jan) 121-127
  • Lee, TC & Schwartz, RJ. (1900) Differential detection of multiple DNA-binding complexes using dissimilar polyanion competitors. Nucl. Acids Res., (Jan) 140-140
  • Lee TC, Shi Y & Schwartz RJ. (1900) Displacement of BrdUrd-induced YY1 by serum response factor activates skeletal a-actin transcription in embryonic myoblasts. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, (Jan) 9814-9818
  • Te-Chung Lee. (1900) Immunosuppression of Concanavalin A and interferon. Bull. Chinese Oncology Soc., (Jan) 28-31
  • Lee, TC & Schwartz, RJ. (1900) Novel use of a polymeric dye in detecting protein-DNA complexes in gel shift assays. BioTechniques, (Jan) 390-391
  • Walowitz JL, Bradley ME, Chen SJ & Lee TC. (1900) Proteolytic regulation of the zinc finger transcription factor YY1, a repressor of muscle-restricted gene expression. J. Biol. Chem., (Jan) 6656-6661
  • Lee, TC & Christie, GE. (1900) Purification and properties of the bacteriophage P2 ogr gene product: A prokaryotic zinc-binding transcriptional activator. J. Biol. Chem., (Jan) 7472-7477
  • Lee, T. -C. and Tung, T. -C. (1900) Studies on the toxicity of Abrin to S-180 Sarcoma cells. Bull. Chinese Oncology Soc., (Jan) 14-22
  • MacLellan WR, Lee TC, Schwartz RJ & Schneider MD. (1900) TGFb response elements of the skeletal a-actin gene: Cooperative action of serum response factor and the SV-40 enhancer-binding protein, TEF-1. J. Biol. Chem., (Jan) 16754-16760
  • Kalenik JL, Chen D, Bradley ME, Chen SJ & Lee TC. (1900) Yeast two-hybrid cloning of a novel zinc finger protein that interacts with the multifunctional transcription factor YY1. Nucl. Acid Res., (Jan) 843-849
See all (11 more)


  • "Induction of tissue inhibitors of matrix metalloproteinases (TIMPs) in NASH and regulation of dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) by TIMPs" AASLD; AASLD; Basic science (2020)
  • "Liver enzyme activity profile-based discovery of serum biomarkers for NASH in mice" AASLD; AASLD; Basic science (2019)
  • "Upregulation of non-canonical Wnt ligands and oxidative glucose metabolism in NASH induced by methionine-choline deficient (MCD) diet" AASLD; AASLD; Basic science (2018)
  • "MMP7 and relevant chemokines in NASH" AASLD; AASLD; Basic science (2017)
  • "Secreted Frizzled Receptor proteins and liver fibrosis in Non alcoholic fatty liver disease" AASLD; AASLD; Basic science (2016)
  • "Skeletal muscle injection of plasmid VEGF165 improves myocardial flow and function in swine with hibernating myocardium" conference; American Heart Association (2002)
  • "Intracoronary administration of AdvFGF-5 improves resting function but does not alter myocardial perfusion during adenosine vasodilation in hibernating myocardium" Conference; American Heart Association (2001)
  • "Hypoxic Response in Cardiomyocytes" Conference; Great Lakes Muscle Symposium (2001)
  • "Positron emission tomography reveals viability and revascularization of cell patch cardiomyoplasty" Conference; American College of Chest Physicians (2001)
  • "Cardiomyocyte apoptosis and selective calcium-mediated proteolysis of cardiac troponin I. Scientific Conference on molecular, cellular, and integrated physiological approaches to the failing heart" Conference; American Heart Association (1999)
  • "Pharmacological preconditioning and selective degradation of contractile proteins associated with simulated hypoxia-induced apoptosis of cultured neonatal cardiomyocytes" Conference; European Heart House (1998)
  • ". Proteolytic regulation of the zinc finger factor YY1, a repressor of myogenic transcription" Conference; ASBMB (1997)
  • ". Analysis of events associated with serum deprivation-induced apoptosis in muscle satellite cells" Conference; ASBMB (1996)
See all (3 more)

Service Activities:

  • I served as Annual Biochemistry Research Day poster judge.; Research poster judge (2022)
  • ad hoc reviewer for FASEB Journal and Stem Cell Research and Therapy; ad hoc reviewer (2022)
  • JSMBS Faculty council; Member (2022)
  • Department of Biochemistry Undergraduate Education Committee; Member (2022)
  • JSMBS Phase I committee; Member (2022)
  • JSMBS M.D. Thesis committee; Member (2022)
  • My reagent service center has made a good reputation for the University over the years. Several dozens of publications have cited University at Buffalo for the use of my service center reagents.; Research reagent provider (2022)
  • I have been operating Biomedical Research Service Center for the broad life science research community. The center provides innovative and inexpensive research reagents for many research and hospital entities domestically and internationally. The annual revenue is about $50,000, which is used to fund research operation.; Research reagents and service provider (2022)
  • I served as Medical Student Research Forum judge; Research poster judge (2022)

School News:

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Insurance Accepted:

Contact Information

351 BRB
3435 Main Street
Buffalo, New York 14214
Phone: (716) 8293106
Fax: (716) 8293106