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Yongbin Liu, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Drug Discovery, 2023 Houston Methodist Research Institute

Combating Chemotherapy Resistance With a New Class of Cancer Drugs


More than 50% of cancer patients who receive chemotherapy are treated with platinum-based drugs. However, due to their severe toxicity, these drugs kill both cancer cells and normal cells, resulting in over 40 side effects. In addition, cancer cells can easily develop resistance to these drugs so patients stop responding to treatment. There are limited solutions once chemoresistance has developed, leading to poor outcomes and high mortality for cancer patients. Thus, the discovery of a new class of platinum drugs with lower toxicity and the ability to overcome drug resistance is urgently needed. Using novel nanotechnology, my research aims to develop new platinum drugs that selectively kill both parental and drug-resistant cancer cells without harming the non-cancerous cells, overcoming the limitations of conventional platinum drugs. My project will also demonstrate the feasibility of combining of our novel drugs and immunotherapy to eliminate treatment-resistant cancer in patients.

The PhRMA Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship has encouraged me to develop effective therapeutic drugs for cancer therapy. It’s my great honor to be selected as an awardee, which has a profound impact on my career to be an independent scientist.

Yongbin Liu