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Gang (Greg) Wang

Research: chromatin modification, histone, DNA methylation, epigenetics, cancer

Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics and Pharmacology
(PhD – University of California, San Diego)


Trained Faculty Mentor endorsed by Office of Graduate Ed UNC Chapel Hill


  • 2019 Yang Family Biomedical Scholars Award, UNC
  • 2019 Phillip and Ruth Hettleman Prize for Scholarly and Artistic Achievement, UNC
  • 2018 Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) Scholar
  • 2017 Gilead Sciences Research Scholar, Gilead Inc. Scholars Program
  • 2016 American Cancer Society (ACS) Scholar
  • 2014-2015 Kimmel Scholar Award, Sidney Kimmel Foundation for Cancer Research
  • 2014-2016 Janet D. Rowley Medical Research Award, Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation for Cancer Research
  • 2014 CONquer canCER Now! (Concern) Foundation Junior Faculty Award
  • 2014 Career Development Award, Department of Defense (DoD) & USA Army
  • 2014 Kimmel Scholar Award
  • 2013-2014 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Scholar Award in Basic Science
  • 2013 Jefferson Pilot Fellowships in Academic Medicine Award, UNC Medical School
  • 2011-2012 Martin D. Abeloff, MD V Scholar (top rating), the V Foundation for Cancer Research
  • 2010-2015 Howard Temin ‘Pathway to Independence’ Award in Cancer Research (K99/R00), NIH/NCI
  • 2008 Irvington Institute – Cancer Research Institute postdoctoral fellowship (declined)
  • 2008-2010 Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) Fellow Award (named as the John C. Newman Researcher of LLS)
  • 2007 C. H. Li Memorial Scholar Fund Scholar Award, the Rockefeller University
  • 2000 Union Medical Award, Fudan University Medical Center, China
  • 1994-1996 Undergraduate merit-based scholarship (People’s Fellowship), Fudan University, China


Our research interests focus broadly on the role for chromatin modification and epigenetic mechanism in gene regulation, development and disease, notably cancer. Our recent works in this broad field have shown that dysregulation of enzymes and effectors involved in histone and DNA methylation causally leads to gene expression deregulation and cancer development. We favor a general view that human disease including cancer often arises from dysregulation of an “epigenetic language” embedded in the genome, when it is mis-written, mis-erased or mis-interpreted. Currently, our laboratory employs cutting-edge techniques, which include CRISPR/cas9-based genomic editing, deep sequencing and small-molecule epigenetic inhibitors, to address issues relating to fundamentals of epigenetics and cancer therapeutics. Multiple on-going projects are (1) biochemical characterization of novel factors/complexes that read chromatin modification; (2) CRISPR/dCas9-based editing of epigenomic modifications for understanding their roles in gene function; (3) knockout and knock-in mouse models with deficiency in chromatin regulators in context of development and tumorigenesis; (4) epigenomic and transcriptome analyses (ChIP-Seq and RNA-Seq) of normal versus cancer cells to delineate pathways essential for tumor growth.


  • Zhihong Ren, Jeong Hyun Ahn, Hequn Liu, Yi-Hsuan Tsai, Natarajan V. Bhanu, Brian Koss, David F. Allison, AnqiMa, Aaron J. Storey, Ping Wang, Samuel G. Mackintosh, Ricky D. Edmondson, Richard W.J. Groen, Anton C.Martens, Benjamin A. Garcia, Alan J. Tackett, Jian Jin, Ling Cai, Deyou Zheng and Gang Greg Wang. PHF19 promotes multiple myeloma tumorigenicity through PRC2 activation and broad H3K27me3 domain formation. Blood 2019 (in press) blood.2019000578; doi:
  • Lu R, Wang J, Ren Z, Yin J, Wang Y, Cai L, Wang GG#. A model system for studying the DNMT3A hotspot mutation (DNMT3AR882) demonstrates a causal relationship between its dominant-negative effect and leukemogenesis. Cancer Res. 2019 Jul 15;79(14):3583-3594.
  • Jie L, Ahn JH, Wang GG#. Understanding histone H3 lysine 36 methylation and its deregulation in disease. Cell. & Mol. Life Sciences. 2019 Aug;76(15):2899-2916. (Invited review for a special issue of “Protein Methylation in Cellular Physiology”)
  • Zhao X, Ren Y, Lawlor M, Shah BD, Park PMC, Lwin T, Wang X, Liu K, Wang M, Gao J, Li T, Xu M, Silva AS, Lee K, Zhang T, Koomen JM, Jiang H, Sudalagunta PR, Meads MB, Cheng F, Bi C, Fu K, Fan H, Dalton WS, Moscinski LC, Shain KH, Sotomayor EM, Wang GG, Gray NS, Cleveland JL, Qi J#, Tao J#. BCL2 Amplicon Loss and Transcriptional Remodeling Drives ABT-199 Resistance in B Cell Lymphoma Models. Cancer Cell. 2019 May 13;35(5):752-766.e9.
  • Allison DF, Wang GG#. R-loops: formation, function, and relevance to cell stress. Cell Stress 2019; 3 (2), 38-47.
  • Zhang ZM*, Lu R*, Wang P, Yu Y, Chen D, Gao L, Liu S, Ji D, Rothbart SB, Wang Y, Wang GG#, Song J#. Structural basis for DNMT3A-mediated de novo DNA methylation. Nature. 2018 Feb 7. doi: 10.1038/nature25477. #, correspondence author. [Highlighted in Cancer Discovery].Xu B, Cai L, Bulter J, Chen D, Lu X, Joel PS, Rafii S, Zheng D, Wang GG#. The Chromatin Remodeler BPTF Activates a Stemness Gene-Expression Program Essential for the Maintenance of Adult Hematopoietic Stem Cells. Stem Cell Reports 2018 March 13. 10: 1-9.
  • Lu R, Wang P, Parton T, Zhou Y, Chrysovergis K, Rockowitz S, Chen WY, Abdel-Wahab O, Wade PA, Zheng D#, Wang GG#. Epigenetic perturbations by Arg882-mutated DNMT3A potentiate aberrant stem cell gene expression program and acute leukemia development. Cancer Cell. 2016 July 11; 30(1):92-107. #, corresponding author.
  • Xu B, On DM, Ma A, Parton T, Konze KD, Pattenden SG, Allison DF, Cai L, Rockowitz S, Liu S, Liu Y, Li F, Vedadi M, Frye SV, Garcia BA, Zheng D, Jin J, Wang GG#. Selective inhibition of EZH2 and EZH1 enzymatic activity by a small molecule suppresses MLL-rearranged leukemia. Blood. 2015 Jan 8;125(2):346-57. PMCID: PMC4287641.
  • Cai L, Rothbart SB, Lu R, Xu B, Chen WY, Tripathy A, Rockowitz S, Zheng D, Patel DJ, Allis CD, Strahl BD, Song J#, Wang GG#. An H3K36 methylation engaging Tudor motif of polycomb-like proteins mediates PRC2 complex targeting. Molecular Cell. 2013 Feb 7;49(3):571-82. PMID: 23273982.
  • Chi P, Allis CD# and Wang GG#. Covalent histone modifications: mis-written, mis-erased and mis-interpreted in human cancers. Nat Rev Cancer. 2010,10(7):457-69. PMID: 20574448.
  • Wang GG, Song J, Wang Z, Dormann HL, Casadio F, Li H, Luo J, Patel DJ and Allis CD#. Haematopoietic malignancies caused by dysregulation of a chromatin-binding PHD finger. Nature. 2009, 459(7248):847-851. PMID: 20541251.

Link to all pubs

  • Phone Numbers

    919-966-5952 (Office Phone)

  • 919-966-5953 (Lab Phone)

  • Address

    450 West Drive, CB# 7295

    (lab) 31-331 Lineberger Cancer Center

    (office) 31-327 Lineberger Cancer Center

    Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7260