Jason X. Cheng, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor

Department of Pathology
Hematopathology Section
The University of Chicago
5841 S. Maryland Avenue
MC 0008, Room TW-051D
Chicago, IL 60637
Phone: 773.702.1254
Fax: 773.702.1200

Clinical Interests

General hematopathology, molecular biology/genetics, bone marrow diseases, myelodysplasia, acute leukemia and lymphoid disorders.

 Research Interests

Genetic and epigenetic controls of hematopoiesis, hematopietic stem cell differentiation and lineage specification. Pathogenesis of anemia, myeloproliferative neoplasms, myelodysplastic syndrome and leukemia. Development of novel RNA epigenetics and chromatin structure-based diagnostics and therapeutics for hematologic malignancies.

Ongoing Research Support

American Cancer Society Institutional Research Grant Award IRG-58-004             Title: Disease-associated drug-selective chromatin conformation in leukemia.
Description: Develop a novel technology to predicate efficacy of epigenetic therapy in leukemia.
Role: PI

Representative Publications 

  1. Cheng JX, Chen L, Cloe A, Yue M, Wei J, Watanabe KA, Shen JQ, Anastasi J, Shammo JM, Larson RA, He C, Le Beau M, Vardiman JA. RNA:m5C methyltransferases Mediate Lineage-associated Chromatin Organization and 5-Azacytidine Response/resistance in Leukemia. Nature Communications. In Press, 2018.
  2. Stoddart A, Wang J, Hu C, Fernald AA, Davis EM, Cheng JX, Le Beau MM. Inhibition of WNT signaling in the bone marrow niche prevents the development of MDS in the Apc(del/+) MDS mouse model. Blood. 2017 Jun 1;129(22):2959-2970. PMID: 28348148.
  3. Perry AM, Warnke RA, Hu Q, Gaulard P, Copie-Bergman C, Alkan S, Wang HY, Cheng JX, Bacon CM, Delabie J, Ranheim E, Kucuk C, Hu X, Weisenburger DD, Jaffe ES, WC Chan. Indolent T-cell lymphoproliferative disease of the gastrointestinal tract. Blood. 2013;122(22):3599-606
  4. Cheng, J.X., Anastasi, J., Watanabe, K., Kleinbrink, E., Grimley, E., Knibbs, R., Shen, J.Q., Vardiman, J.W. Genome-wide Profiling Reveals Epigenetic Inactivation of the PU.1 Pathway by Histone H3 Lysine 27 Tri-methylation in Cytogenetically Normal Myelodysplastic Syndrome. Leukemia. 2013 Feb 15. doi: 10.1038/leu.2013.45. [Epub ahead of print]
  5. Heinz, S., Benner, C., Bertolino, E., Lin, Y.C., Laslo, P., Cheng, J.X., Murre, C., Singh, H. and Glass. CU. Pu.1 cooperates with alternate lineage determinants to establish macrophage and B-cell specific epigenetic states and transcriptomes. Mol Cell. 2010 May 28;38(4):576-89.
  6. Spooner, CJ, Cheng J.X., Elisabet Pujadas, Peter Laslo, and Harinder Singh. A recurring gene regulatory network that orchestrates innate versus adaptive cell fate choice in the immune system. Immunity 2009 Oct 16;31(4):576-86. Epub 2009 Oct 8.
  7. Cheng, J.X., Tretiakova, M., Gong, C., Mandal, S., Krausz, T., Taxy, J. Renal medullary carcinoma: rhabdoid features and the absence of INI1 expression as markers of aggressive behavior. Mod Pathol. 2008 Jun;21(6):647-52. Epub 2008
  8. Graham, W.V., Wang F. Cheng J.X., Yoon B., Wang Y., Lin A., and Turner J.R. Tumor necrosis factor-induced long myosin light chain kinase transcription is regulated by differentiation-dependent signaling events. Characterization of the human long myosin light chain kinase promoter. J Biol Chem. 2006 Sep 8;281(36):26205-15.
  9. Cheng J.X., Gandolfi M, Ptashne M. Activation of the Gal1 gene of yeast by pairs of 'non-classical' activators. Current Biology. 2004 Sep 21;14(18):1675-9.
  10. Cheng J.X., Floer M, Ononaji P, Bryant G, Ptashne M. "Responses of four yeast genes to changes in the transcriptional machinery are determined by their promoters." Current Biology, October, 2002 , 12: 1828
  11. Cheng, J.X., Nevado, J., Lu Z., and Ptashne, M. The TBP-Inhibitory Domain of TAF145 Limits the Effects of Nonclassical Transcriptional Activators. (2001) Current Biology. 12:934
  12. Cheng, X., Boyer, J. L. and Juliano, R. L. Use of a Yeast Combinatorial Library for In Vivo Selection of Peptides that Functionally Replace a Zinc Finger in the Sp1 Transcription Factor. (1997) PNAS, 94:14120
  13. Cheng, X., Kay, B. K. and Juliano, R. L. Identification of a Biologically Significant DNA-Binding Peptide Motif by Use of a Random Phage Display Library. (1996) Gene, 171:1


Xiaojun Cheng & Rudy L. Juliano. Method For the Identification and Characterization of Peptides That Recognize Specific DNA Sequences. Patent No. 5,869,250, Feb. 9, 1999.


  • The Swim Across America Rush University/UChicago ITM Award, 2016.
  • The Young Investigator Award, Cancer Research Foundation, 2014.
  • The American Cancer Society (ACG-IRG) Award, 2013.
  • The Best Oral Platform Presentation. 2012 American Society for Clinical Pathology Annual Meeting. Boston.
  • The Society for Hematopathology Pathologist-in-Training Award, 2008.
  • The Paul E. Strandjord Young Investigator Award from Academy of Clinical Physicians and Scientists, 2008.
  • The Robert E. Priest Fellowship, 2008.
  • The winner of the Research Competition of the Chicago Pathology Society, 2008.
  • The 2008 Best Abstract Award from International Association of Chinese Pathologists. 

Memberships in Professional Societies

07/2006 - Present                    United State and Canadian Academy of Pathology 
07/2008 – Present                   American Society of Hematology
08/2009 – Present                   American Society for Clinical Pathology
09/2009 – present                    American Association for Cancer Research

PubMed Link to Dr. Jason Cheng's publications