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Yan Qu, PhD

Senior Principal Scientist

Yan Qu is a Senior Principal Scientist at Rinat, which is part of the Oncology Research and Development Group. Since joining Pfizer in 2013, she has been supporting avelumab preclinical research work through collaboration with the Pfizer global development team. More recently, Dr. Qu has been exploring therapeutic strategies targeting myeloid populations and designing the next generation antiCD40 Ab and cytokine fusion protein.

Dr. Qu received her PhD and MS degree from Case Western Reserve University. She worked in Dr. Michael Weiss’s lab studying the sex-determining region Y protein (SRY), a transcription factor, and the function of its nuclear localization domain in the context of sex-related disorders. Dr. Qu continued pursuing her PhD in pharmacology department in Dr. George Dubyak’s lab. Trained as a cell biologist, her thesis focused on studying the purinergic receptor (P2X7R, an ATP receptor) signaling cascade, P2X7R mediated IL-1β processing and secretion through membrane trafficking / secretory pathway regulation and how this affects antigen presenting cells activation in the context of inflammation.

Prior to joining Pfizer, Dr. Qu moved to the San Francisco Bay Area and started her post-doctoral training at Genentech in Dr. Vishva Dixit’s lab, where she discovered that phosphorylation of NLR family CARD domain-containing protein 4 (NLRC4) is critical for macrophage activation upon salmonella infection. She also worked on a parallel project characterizing pannexin1 hemichannel-dependent metabolites release and its role in regulating thymocytes homeostasis and apoptotic cell clearance.