Physician’s Profile

Kelley Yan, MD, PhD

Department of Genetics & Development
Department of Medicine
Division of Digestive & Liver Diseases
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Assistant Professor of Genetics and Development

I am a physician-scientist trained in diverse disciplines including clinical gastroenterology, structural biology and stem cell biology. This background provides me with a unique perspective and opportunity to study intestinal stem cell (ISC) biology at the molecular, cellular and tissue levels. My love of science grew from an appreciation of studying undergraduate chemistry and physical sciences. During my graduate school education, this evolved into a desire to understand how 3D structure or molecular form enables biological function in order to confer specificity in protein-protein or protein-nucleic acid interactions. Specifically, I have experimentally examined these interactions in signal transduction, including ligand/receptor interactions, using structural biology and biophysical methods. My medical training armed me with a love for clinical gastroenterology and guided me toward the field of regenerative medicine to feed my personal desire to serve the patients I see in my clinic. As a postdoctoral fellow, I pursued further scientific training in ISC biology and learned to use rigorous mouse genetics, in vivo models, ex vivo 3D organoid culture models, and single-cell genomics to examine stem cell fate decisions.

Board Certificates
Internal Medicine
Areas of Expertise:
  • Digestive System Disorder
  • Gastroenterology
  • Gastrointestinal Disorders
  • Internal Medicine
Honors & Awards:

2017 ASCI Young Physician-Scientist Award, American Society for Clinical Investigation

2017-2020 Louis V. Gerstner, Jr. Scholars Award, Columbia University Medical Center

2013 MSC 2013 Travel Award, Case Western Reserve School of Medicine

2013 Gregory J. Gurtner Memorial Lecturer in GI, Washington University School of Medicine

2012-2017 Career Award for Medical Scientists, Burroughs Wellcome Fund

2012-2017 K08 Mentored Clinical Scientist Career Development Award, NIDDK

2009-2012 MD Scholar, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), Stanford University

2006 Glasgow-Rubin Achievement Award, American Medical Women’s Association

1997-2006 Medical Scientist Training Program, Mount Sinai School of Medicine

2004 Basic Science Academic Achievement Award, Mount Sinai School of Medicine

2004 Best Doctoral Dissertation Prize, Mount Sinai School of Medicine

1997-1998 Fanny Bullock-Workman Graduate Fellowship


Pont AR, Yan KS. Intestinal Crypts Assume the Fetal Position in Response to Injury. Cell Stem Cell. 2018; 23(2):158-159. PMID: 30075126

Yan KS, Gevaert O, Zheng GXY, Anchang B, Probert CS, Larkin KA, Davies PS, Cheng ZF, Kaddis JS, Han A, Roelf K, Calderon RI, Cynn E, Hu X, Mandleywala K, Wilhelmy J, Grimes SM, Corney DC, Boutet SC, Terry JM, Belgrader P, Ziraldo SB, Mikkelsen TS, Wang F, von Furstenberg RJ, Smith NR, Chandrakesan P, May R, Chrissy MAS, Jain R, Cartwright CA, Niland JC, Hong YK, Carrington J, Breault DT, Epstein J, Houchen CW, Lynch JP, Martin MG, Plevritis SK, Curtis C, Ji HP, Li L, Henning SJ, Wong MH & Kuo CJ. Intestinal enteroendocrine lineage cells possess homeostatic and injury-inducible stem cell activity. Cell Stem Cell. 2017 Jul6;21(1):78-90. PMID 28686870.

Yan KS, Janda CY, Chang J, Zheng GXY, Larkin KA, Luca VC, Chia LA, Mah AT, Han A, Terry JM, Ootani A, Roelf K, Lee M, Yuan J, Li X, Bolen CR, Wilhelmy J, Davies PS, Ueno H, von Furstenberg RJ, Belgrader P, Ziraldo SB, Ordonez H, Henning SJ, Wong MH, Snyder MP, Weissman IL, Hsueh AJ, Mikkelsen TS, Garcia KC, & Kuo CJ. Non-equivalence of Wnt and R-spondin ligands during Lgr5+ intestinal stem-cell self-renewal. Nature. 2017 May 11;545(7653):238-242. PMID: 28467820

Janda CY*, Dang LT*, You C, Chang J, de Lau W, Zhong ZA, Yan KS, Marecic O, Siepe D, Li X, Moody JD, Williams BO, Clevers H, Piehler J, Baker D, Kuo CJ, & Garcia KC. Surrogate Wnt ligands that phenocopy canonical Wnt and β-catenin signalling. Nature. 2017 May 11;545(7653):234-237. PMID: 28467818

Mah, AT, Yan KS, & Kuo CJ. Wnt pathway regulation of intestinal stem cells. J. Physiol. 594(17):4837-47 (2016). PMID 27581568

Yan KS & Kuo CJ. Ascl2 reinforces intestinal stem cell identity. Cell Stem Cell 16(2):105-6 (2015). PMID: 25658363

Chan CK, Seo EY, Chen JY, Lo D, McArdle A, Sinha R, Tevlin R, Seita J, Vincent-Tompkins J, Wearda T, Lu WJ, Senarath-Yapa K, Chung MT, Marecic O, Tran M, Yan KS, Upton R, Walmsley GG, Lee AS, Sahoo D, Kuo CJ, Weissman IL, & Longaker MT. Identification and specification of the mouse skeletal stem cell. Cell 160(1-2):285-98 (2015). PMID 25594184 (*Faculty of 1000 recommended)

DiMarco RL, Su J, Yan KS, Dewi R, Kuo CJ & Heilshorn SC. Engineering of Three-Dimensional Microenvironments to Promote Contractile Behavior in Primary Intestinal Organoids. Integrative Biology 6(2):127-42 (2014). PMID:24343706

Lim X, Tan SH, Koh WL, Chau RM, Yan KS, Kuo CJ, van Amerongen R, Klein AM & Nusse R. Interfollicular epidermal stem cells self-renew via autocrine Wnt signaling. Science 342 (6163):1226-30 (2014). PMID: 24311688 (*Faculty of 1000 recommended)

Magness ST, Puthoff BJ, Crissey MA, Dunn JC, Henning SJ, Houchen CW, Kaddis JS, Kuo CJ, Li L, Lynch JP, Martin MG, May RJ, Niland JC, Olack B, Qian D, Stelzner M, Swain J, Wang F, Wang J, Wang X, Yan K, Yu J & Wong MH. A multi-center study to standardize reporting and analyses of fluorescence-activated cell sorted murine intestinal epithelial cells. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol 305 (8): G542-51 (2013). PMID: 23928185

Barry ER, Morikawa T, Butler BL, Shrestha K, de la Rosa R, Yan KS, Fuchs CS, Magness ST, Smits R, Ogino S, Kuo CJ & Camargo FD. Restriction of intestinal stem cell expansion and the regenerative response by YAP. Nature 493 (7430):106-10 (2013). PMID:23178811 (*Faculty of 1000 recommended)

Yan KS, Chia LA, Li X, Ootani A, Su J, Lee JY, Su N, Luo Y, Heilshorn SC, Amieva MR, Sangiorgi E, Capecchi MR & Kuo CJ. The intestinal stem cell markers Bmi1 and Lgr5 identify two functionally distinct populations. Proc Natl Acad Sci 109(2):466-471 (2012). PMID 22190486 (*Faculty of 1000 recommended)

Kaltenbach T, Leung C, Wu K, Yan K, Friedland S & Soetikno R. Use of the Colonoscope Training Model with the Colonoscope 3D Imaging Probe Improved Trainee Colonoscopy Performance: A Pilot Study. Dig Dis Sci 56(5), 1496-1502 (2011). PMID: 21409379

Zeng L, Zhang Q, Yan K & Zhou MM. Structural Insights into piRNA recognition by the human PIWI-like 1 PAZ domain. Proteins 79(6), 2004-2009 (2011). PMID: 21465557

Yan KS & Pasricha PJ. Acting in Good Taste: Nutrient Sensors in the Gut. Gut 58(7):897-898 (2009). PMID: 19520884

Yan KS, Yan S, Farooq A, Han A, Zeng L & Zhou MM. Structure and Conserved RNA Binding of the PAZ Domain. Nature 426, 468-474 (2003). PMID: 14615802 (*Faculty of 1000 recommended)

Farooq A, Zeng L, Yan KS, Ravichandran KS & Zhou MM. Coupling of Folding and Binding in the PTB Domain of the Signaling Protein Shc. Structure 11, 905-913 (2003). PMID: 12906822

Yan KS & Zhou MM. Examining Both Sides of a Janus PTB Domain. Structure 11, 482-484 (2003). PMID: 12737812

Yan KS & Zhou MM. TAGging the Target for Damage Control. Nature Structural Biology 9, 638-640 (2002). PMID: 12198481

Yan KS, Kuti M & Zhou MM. PTB or Not PTB-That is the Question. FEBS Letters 513, 67-70 (2002). PMID: 11911882

Yan KS, Kuti M, Yan S, Mujtaba S, Farooq A, Goldfarb MP & Zhou MM. FRS2 PTB Domain Conformation Regulates Interactions with Divergent Neurotrophic Receptors. Journal of Biological Chemistry 277, 17088-17094 (2002). PMID: 11877385

Dhalluin C, Yan KS, Plotnikova O, Zeng L, Goldfarb MP & Zhou MM. 1H, 13C and 15N Resonance Assignments of the SNT PTB Domain in Complex with FGFR1 Peptide. Journal of Biomolecular NMR 18, 371-372 (2000). PMID: 11200536

Dhalluin C, Yan KS, Plotnikova O, Lee KW, Zeng L, Kuti M, Mujtaba S, Goldfarb MP & Zhou MM. Structural Basis of SNT PTB Domain Interactions with Distinct Neurotrophic Receptors. Molecular Cell, 6, 921-929 (2000). PMID: 11090629