Wangensteen Lab

  • Image of liver staining for FAH

    Liver staining for FAH

  • Philadelphia Skyline
  • Immunofluorescence staining

    Immunofluorescence staining showing repopulating hepatocytes (Green label), pericentral hepatocytes (Red), and overlap (Yellow)

Welcome to the Wangensteen Lab


Our lab is conducting exciting research on the genetics of liver repopulation and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We have developed two highly innovative in vivo genetic screening paradigms to elucidate genetic pathways involved in carcinogenesis and liver repopulation in the setting of toxic injury. We aim to discover pathways that lead to drug sensitivity and resistance in HCC.  One of our assays involves CRISPR activation screening in vivo in the liver, the first-ever use of this type of screening in live mice.

image depicting in vivo screening approach



Dec, 2019

Happy holidays from the Wangensteen Lab

Nov, 2019:

In press, the largest ever in vivo screen, conducted by Adam Zahm and colleagues to identify miRNA interactions in liver repopulation. This paper has beautiful graphics to depict the technology and results. Check it out:

Zahm AM, Wang AW, Wang YJ, Schug, J, Wangensteen KJ*, Kaestner KH*. High-content Screen Identifies MicroRNAs Required for Liver Repopulation After Injury in Mice. Gastroneterology. 2019. In press. * co-corresponding.


Wangensteen Lab had a strong showing at the 2019 AASLD Liver meeting!

  • Congrats Morgan on receiving the Professor Margit Hamosh Memorial Travel Award for the most outstanding abstract on hepatocellular carcinoma research for The Liver Meeting for her abstract entitled, "LXR agonism potentiates Sorafenib activity in HCC by inducing metabolic stress". She gave an excellent oral presentation.
  • Congrats Julia Kieckhaefer for presenting her poster of distinction, "Identification of effectors of TNFA signaling that modulate liver repopulation by high throughput CRISPRA screening," which received a lot of interest.

Oct, 2019: 

Congratulations Amber and company on publishing this interesting work to examine the changes in chromatin in the repopulating liver:

Wang AW, Wang YJ, Zahm AM, Morgan AR, Wangensteen KJ, Kaestner KH. The Dynamic Chromatin Architecture of the Regenerating Liver. Cell Mol Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2019 Oct 17.


Wangensteen Lab presents at the 2019 Penn Post-doc symposium:

Sept, 2019:

Congratations Amber Wang, PhD, on a wonderful PhD thesis defense!

The Wangensteen lab welcomes Master's in Translational Medicine trainee Jenna Mancinelli!

Our paper, "Cell Type-Specific Gene Expression Profiling in the Mouse Liver" is now published at JoVE


June, 2019:

The Wangensteen Lab welcomes graduate student Alexandra M. Vázquez Salgado!

Congratulations Kirk Wangensteen for being named a Beckman Young Investigator!

Congratulations Kirk Wangensteen for being selected for the Gastroenterology Faculty Research Award!

May, 2019:

Thank you Jie for your hard work this year in the Wangensteen Lab! We will miss you!

April, 2019:

Hurray for Julia, award winner for her abstract at the Digestive Diseases Center Symposium on April 15, 2019, "Identification of effectors of TNFα signaling that modulate liver repopulation by high throughput in vivo CRISPRa screening"!

Congratulations Morgan for being selected for a travel award and an oral presentation for abstract, "LXR agonism and Sorafenib treatment as novel combination therapy for hepatocellular carcinoma", and also for chairing a session at the Experimental Biology 2019 meeting! Way to go!

Morgan receiving award


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