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Yueh Lee, MD, PhD, Jiandong Liu, PhD, and Angela Smith, MD

The UNC School of Medicine recently announced that Yueh Lee, MD, Ph.D., (Radiology), Jiandong Liu, Ph.D. (Pathology and Laboratory Medicine), and Angela Smith, MD, (Urology) have been named as recipients of the 5th annual Yang Family Biomedical Scholars Award.

The award recognizes faculty that have made significant scholarly contributions to their field while also receiving national recognition for their research. Each faculty member will receive a generous grant to be used at their discretion for biomedical research projects and is made possible through donations from Yuanqing Yang, Chairman and CEO of Lenovo with additional financial support from Mr. To Hing Wu, an associate to Mr. Yang. The 5th annual seminar to highlight their work will be held later this year.

Full Press Release at


“We are extremely pleased that Mr. Yang and Mr. Wu have continued to support the UNC School of Medicine’s accomplished young researchers who strive each day to create new scientific knowledge to improve the health of all people.

Drs. Lee, Liu, and Smith have already conducted seminal research early in their careers, and we look forward to their innovative work breaking new ground in the years to come. We are proud to include them as our newest Yang Family Biomedical Scholars, and we are thankful for Mr. Yang’s generous support, which allows young scientists further opportunities to pursue new research endeavors at an important time in their careers.”

Blossom Damania, Ph.D.
Vice-Dean for Research
Boshamer Distinguished Professor of Microbiology and Immunology
UNC Lineberger Member

About Dr. Smith’s Research

Dr. Smith has been conducting research that has found high rates of hospital readmissions among major bladder cancer surgery patients; highlighting important opportunities for improvement of care. Dr. Smith has led a qualitative study of patients and caregivers to understand gaps in the prevailing norms, and this work has informed a new technological intervention designed to address barriers to patient and caregiver education and communication.

Dr. Smith is currently the co-PI on the $8.5 million PCORI Large Pragmatic Trial, a study directly addressing the top-priority research question for bladder cancer patients and caregivers, a project that is poised to transform the standard of care.

Dr. Smith is also the 2020 recipient of the UNC Hettleman Prize for Artistic & Scholarly Achievement.