Anthony K. L. Leung, PhD, MBioch, is a molecular biologist who studies how cellular regulation of RNA impacts cancer, neurodegeneration, and virus infection.
Poly(ADP-ribose); microRNAs; Cancers; RNA regulation; RNA granules; stress responses; therapeutic siRNAs; Chikungunya virus; virus infection; host-pathogen interactions; high-resolution imaging; quantitative proteomics; bioinformatics
Experiences & Accomplishments
University of Dundee
University of Oxford
Dr. Anthony Leung – a scientist and an inventor – is an expert in the area of RNA, ADP-ribosylation and proteomics. Dr. Leung completed his four-year Master in Biochemistry degree at the Exeter College, University of Oxford. Funded by the Croucher Scholarship from Hong Kong and Overseas Research Scheme from United Kingdom, Dr. Leung earned his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Dundee under the guidance of Dr. Angus I. Lamond. Using quantitative proteomes and imaging approaches, Dr. Leung characterized the nucleolar proteome dynamics and discovered a novel nucleolar localization pathway during his Ph.D. In 2004, Dr. Leung was awarded the Human Frontier Science Program Long-term Fellowship and, subsequently in 2007, a Special Fellowship from The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to perform postdoctoral research on microRNAs under the mentorship of Nobel Laureate Dr. Phillip A. Sharp at MIT. In 2010, Dr. Leung hold a secondary postdoctoral appointment with Dr. Paul Chang at MIT on investigating a therapeutically important protein modification called ADP-ribosylation. Dysregulation of ADP-ribosylation metabolism results in neurodegenerative disorders, virus infection and cancer susceptibility. Dr. Leung started his lab in 2011 as an Assistant Professor, and currently an Associate Professor, in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Johns Hopkins University. Funded by the Idea Award from the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program, Dr. Leung developed a novel non-biased technique to identify the sites of ADP-ribosylation – a technical breakthrough of the field. He was since then recognized with numerous accolades: Top 5 Agilent Early Career Professor (2013), the Inaugural Johns Hopkins Catalyst Award (2015), Research Scholar Award from the American Cancer Society (2016), and Top 10 Finalist for the American Society of Cell Biology–Gibco Emerging Leader Prize (2016). Dr. Leung has authored over 40 peer-reviewed publications, invited book chapters and review articles. Because of his expertise, Dr. Leung has been frequently invited to review for many scientific journals, serve on editorial boards, chair scientific sessions and speak at international meetings. Dr. Leung is highly collaborative on multidisciplinary projects and grants with experts in virology (Dr. Diane Griffin), oncology (Dr. Ben Park), chemistry (Dr. Marc Greenberg), biophysics (Dr. Sua Myong), proteomics (Dr. Shao-En Ong) and single molecule diagnostics (Dr. Al Celedon; Scanogen Inc.). In addition, Dr. Leung actively involves in patient education by initiating direct conversations between basic scientists and cancer survivors.
Honors & Awards
1995–1999 Waugh Scholarship, University of Oxford, UK 1995–1999 Fitzgerald Prize, University of Oxford, UK 1999–2002 Overseas Research Scheme Award, UK 1999–2002 Scholarship, Croucher Foundation, Hong Kong Jun–Jul 2002 European Advanced Light Microscopy Facility Fellowship, EMBL Heidelberg, Germany 2004–2007 Long-term Fellowship, Human Frontier Science Program 2007–2010 Special Fellowship, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society 2011–2013 Idea Award, Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program 2013 Top 5 Finalist, Agilent Early Career Professor Award 2013–2014 Faculty Innovation Award, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health 2015 Inaugural Johns Hopkins Catalyst Award 2016 American Cancer Society Research Scholar Award 2016 Top 10 Finalist, American Society of Cell Biology (ASCB)–Gibco Emerging Leader Prize 2017 Finalist, Burroughs Wellcome Fund Investigators in the Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease 2017 Johns Hopkins Discovery Award 2017 W. W. Smith Charitable Trust Medical Research Award 2017 Teaching Excellence Award, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD (Term 1) 2017 2019 Shikani/El-Hibri Prize for Discovery & Innovation, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Selected publications (5 out of 56)
- Fischer JW, Busa VF, Shao Y, Leung AKL (2020). Structure-Mediated RNA Decay by UPF1 and G3BP1. Mol Cell. 2020 Jan 29. pii: S1097-2765(20)30042-3. doi:10.1016/j.molcel.2020.01.021. PMID: 32017897
- Ando Y, Elkayam E, McPherson RL, Dasovich M, Cheng SJ, Voorneveld J, Filippov DV, Ong SE, Joshua-Tor L, Leung AK (2019). ELTA: Enzymatic Labeling of Terminal ADP-ribose. Mol Cell 73:845-856.e5 PMID: 30712989
- McPherson RL, Abraham R, Sreekumar E, Ong SE, Cheng SJ, Baxter VK, Kistemaker HA, Filippov DV, Griffin DE, Leung AK. ADP-ribosylhydrolase activity of Chikungunya virus macrodomain is critical for virus replication and virulence. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2017 PMID: 28143925
- Daniels CM, Ong SE, Leung AK (2014). Phosphoproteomic Approach to Characterize Protein Mono- and Poly(ADP-ribosyl)ation Sites from Cells. J Proteome Res. 13:3510-22. PMID: 24920161
- Leung AK, Vyas S, Rood JE, Bhutkar A, Sharp PA, Chang P. Poly(ADP-ribose) regulates stress responses and microRNA activity in the cytoplasm. Molecular Cell 2011 PMID: 21596313