Passion. imagination. Collaboration. 

Pingping Hou, PhD

Principal Investigator

Assistant Professor

Center for Cell Signaling

Department of Microbiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics

Member, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey

Associate Member, RBHS Institute for Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases

Rutgers RBHS-NJMS Cancer Center, Newark, NJ


B.S., Molecular Biology, China Agricultural University, Beijing, China, 2007

Ph.D., Cell Biology, Peking University, Beijing, China, 2014

Postdoctoral fellow, Cancer Biology, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, US, 2021


HealthXpress Award, Rutgers, 2023

New Investigator Award from Rutgers CINJ, 2023

Lustgarten Foundation-AACR Pancreatic Cancer Career Development Award, 2022

Thomas H. and Mayme P. Scott Fellowship in Cancer Research, 2021

NIH-NCI K22 Career Transition Award, 2020

Harold C. and Mary L. Dailey Endowment Fellowship, 2020

Meet the team

Daiyong Deng, phd

Research Associate (since 2021/11)

Dr. Deng earned his Ph.D. degree at South China Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2010. He is an expert in microbial engineering, and has established a solid research background in multiple biological disciplines including microbiology, genetics, molecular biology and biochemistry during his postdoc training. He has 5 first-author publications in the past 5 years and he is the co-inventor of 4 patents and the co-author of over 30 papers.

In Hou lab, Dr. Deng helps with lab management and dissects the role of genetic alternations in regulating KRAS targeted therapy resistance.

Nader Mahmoudzadeh, PHD

Postdoctoral Fellow (since 2023/03)

Nader was born in Tehran, Iran. He earned his PhD from Indiana University in 2022. While at Indiana he studied the role of a metabolite called L-2-hydroxyglutarate in the hypoxia response in Drosophila melanogaster.

In Hou lab, Dr. Mahmoudzadeh develops novel CAR macrophage therapeutics for pancreatic cancer treatment.

Habeebunnisa Begum, PHD

Postdoctoral Fellow (since 2023/05)

Habeeb earned her Ph.D from CSIR-Indian Institute of Chemical Technology. Her graduate work focused on understanding the role of apoptosis and autophagy in regulating cancer cell viability and determining the therapeutic potential of dual induction of apoptosis and autophagy in pancreatic cancer.

In Hou lab, Dr. Begum understands immunotherapy resistance in pancreatic cancer.


Undergraduate Student (since 2024/01)

Mohammed is a third-year undergraduate student at Rutgers University, studying Business Analytics and Information Technology (BAIT) and Biological Sciences. With a family history of both cancer professionals and patients, he is determined to work toward optimizing cancer treatment solutions through meaningful scientific discovery. Beyond his interest in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries, Mohammed love sports, outdoor activities like skiing and scuba diving, and traveling around the world.

In Hou lab,  Mohammed works with the team to find the next ground-breaking solution to pancreatic cancer.

Yuemeng Huang, phd

Postdoctoral Fellow (since 2024/02)

Yuemeng earned her PhD in clinical veterinary medicine from Northwest A&F University in China in 2023. Her graduate work focused on the abnormal reprogramming in chromatin accessibility and epigenomic of animal cloned embryos in early development.

In Hou lab,  Yuemeng develops a universal, "off-the-shelf" cell therapy for pancreatic cancer.

Parichehr Maleki, phd

Postdoctoral Fellow (since 2024/04)

Parichehr earned her PhD from the National Institute of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (NIGEB), Iran. During her time at NIGEB, she focused on functionalizing a recently discovered lncRNA, LINK-A, in non-small cell lung cancer. Simultaneously, she was developing a graphene oxide-based gene delivery system for potential use in cancer gene therapy. Her unwavering passion to combat cancer drives her career endeavors.

In Hou lab,  Parichehr develops myeloid cell therapy for pancratic cancer.


Jason Xiong: summer student (2022/06-2022/07)

Riya Patel: research volunteer (2022/01-2022/08), now an MD student at Rutgers NJMS.

Roma Agarwal: summer student (2022/07-2022/08)

Luis Garza: graduate student (2021/09-2022/09), now a PhD student at Dr. Fitzgerald-Bocarsly's lab.

Yaritza Rodriguez Vazquez: masters student (2022/10-2022/12) graduated.

Kevin Herrera: masters student (2023/01-2023/08) graduated.

Ryan Jin: MD student (2024/01-2024/02) course completed.