Lab Members

Anat Ben-Shlomo, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Staff Physician Email: benshlomoa@cshs.org

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Anat Ben-Shlomo, MD, earned her medical degree at Sackler Faculty of Medicine at Tel Aviv University. Her research focuses on clinical and translational research in pituitary and adrenal gland disorders. She has an emphasis on pituitary tumor genomics and therapies and somatostatin biology. For more information, please refer to Ben-Shlomo’s bio webpage in the Cedars-Sinai investigator directory.

Qi Chen, MD

Research Associate Email: qi.chen@cshs.org

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Qi Chen, MD, earned her medical degree from Anhui Medical School and her master’s degree in science from Sun Yat-sen University in China. She joined the Melmed Laboratory in 2013 and participates in studying pituitary tumor pathogenesis.

Vera Chesnokova, PhD

Associate Professor of Medicine Email: chesnokovav@cshs.org

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Vera Chesnokova, PhD, graduated from Novosibirsk State University and obtained her doctorate from the Institute of Cytology and Genetics Russian Academy of Science, Novosibirsk, Russia. She joined the Melmed Lab at Cedars-Sinai in 1996. Her work focuses on molecular mechanisms underlying pro-tumorigenic properties of GH in the colon and protective effects of GH deficiency for colon tumor growth. For more information, please refer to Chesnokova’s bio webpage in the Cedars-Sinai investigator directory.

Odelia Cooper, MD

Odelia Cooper, MD

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Staff Physician Email: coopero@cshs.org

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Odelia Cooper, MD, earned her bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University in 1998 and her medical degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 2002. Cooper explores the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) pathway in pituitary tumors. She has shown in cellular and animal models of prolactinomas and Cushing disease that EGFR activation leads to larger tumors and higher hormone levels, and treatment with EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors decreases tumor size and hormone production. A Phase IIa multicenter clinical trial treating patients with resistant prolactinomas with lapatinib is ongoing. For more information, please refer to Cooper’s bio webpage in the Cedars-Sinai investigator directory.

Evelyn Ding

Research Associate Email: evelynyan.ding@cshs.org

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Evelyn Ding, MD, earned her medical degree from the Third Military Medical School in China, and her master’s degree in immunopharmacology from the Academy of Military Medical Science, China. She joined the Melmed Laboratory in 2013. She currently works on defining pituitary tumor mutations.

Hong Jiang, MS

Research Associate Email: hong.jiang@cshs.org

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Hong Jiang earned her bachelor of engineering in bioengineering at Huazhong University of Science and Technology in China, followed by a master of science in virology at Wuhan Institute of Virology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Since 2008, she has been working on regulation of proopiomelanocortin expression and exploring new drug treatments for Cushing disease.

Hiraku Kameda, MD, PhD

Postdoctoral Scientist Email: hiraku.kameda@cshs.org

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Hiraku Kameda, MD, PhD, earned his doctorate in medicine from the Hokkaido University in Sapporo, Japan. During his PhD, he studied expression and function of pituitary neuromedin B. He joined the Melmed Lab in 2015. He works on pathophysiological regulation of the proopiomelanocortin gene using pituitary cell lines and transgenic mice.

Ning-Ai Liu, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Staff Physician Email: ning-ai.liu@cshs.org

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Ning-Ai Liu, MD, PhD, graduated from Fudan University Shanghai Medical College and completed her internship and residency at the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta. Her research interests focus on developmental and molecular mechanisms underlying hypothalamic-pituitary pathophysiology. Her pioneering zebrafish research has provided an important tool for mechanistic insights into dysregulated pituitary hormone production, leading to identification of new therapeutic targets in human pituitary tumors. For more information, please refer to Liu’s bio webpage in the Cedars-Sinai investigator directory.

Lihua Xia

Research Lab Assistant Email: lihua.xia@cshs.org

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Lihua Xia earned her undergraduate degree from Fudan University in Shanghai, China. She has worked in the Melmed Lab since 2001 and supports daily laboratory operations with her experienced molecular techniques and animal experimental skills.

Masaaki Yamamoto, MD, PhD

Postdoctoral Scientist Email: masaaki.yamamoto@cshs.org

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Masaaki Yamamoto, MD, PhD, received his medical degree from Hyogo College of Medicine and completed his residency at Tokyo Women’s Medical University Hospital in Japan. He received his doctorate in neuroendocrinology at Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine. He joined the Melmed Lab in 2014, where his research focuses on the role of somatostatin receptor subtype 5 in regulating pituitary function.

Cuiqi Zhou, PhD

Assistant Professor of Medicine, Research Scientist Email: cuiqi.zhou@cshs.org

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Cuiqi Zhou, PhD, earned her doctorate at Peking Union Medical College and then did postdoctorate work at Cedars-Sinai. In the Melmed Lab, she studies molecular pathogenesis and treatment for pituitary adenomas using molecular, cellular and animal models. For more information, please refer to Zhou’s bio webpage in the Cedars-Sinai investigator directory.

Svetlana Zonis

Research Associate Email: svetlana.zonis@cshs.org

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Svetlana Zonis, PhD, received her doctorate degree in experimental oncology from N. N. Petrov Oncology Institute, St. Petersburg, Russia, and earned her master’s degree in biological sciences from St. Petersburg State University in Russia. She joined the Melmed Lab at Cedars-Sinai in 2003, and studies effects of growth hormone on colon tumor development.

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