James R. Heath, PhD

President & Professor

Dr. James R. Heath is President and Professor at Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle. Heath also has the position of Professor of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology at UCLA. Formerly, he was the Elizabeth W. Gilloon Professor of Chemistry at Caltech, and served as co-director of the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy at UCLA until 2017.

Heath has had a profound impact on ISB since taking over leadership in 2018. He continues to make important discoveries in the field of cancer immunotherapy, and in 2022 was selected to lead a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center to study sequential targeted inhibitors and immunotherapies.  

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Heath quickly pivoted the focus of his lab and collaboratively worked with others within and beyond ISB to uncover secrets behind COVID-19 and long COVID. He published research that has changed how COVID-19 is understood, and now leads the Pacific Northwest consortium of the NIH-funded RECOVER study, which aims to understand the long-term effects of COVID.

Heath received his PhD in 1988 from Rice University, where he was the principal graduate student involved in the discovery of C60 and the fullerenes. He was a Miller Fellow at UC Berkeley before joining the research staff at IBM Watson Labs in 1991. He took a faculty position at UCLA in 1994, and moved to Caltech in 2003.

He has received several awards and honors, including the Irving Weinstein Award from the American Association of Cancer Researchers, and the Sackler Prize in the Physical Sciences. In 2009, he was named one of the top seven innovators in the world by Forbes Magazine.

Heath has founded or co-founded several companies, including PACT Pharma, Integrated Diagnostics, Indi Molecular, CTI Molecular Imaging (acquired by Siemens in 2005), Sofie Biosciences, Isoplexis, and NanoSys.

President and Professor, Institute for Systems Biology, Seattle

Elizabeth W. Gilloon Professor & Professor of Chemistry, Caltech

Professor of Molecular & Medical Pharmacology, UCLA Health Sciences Center

Prof., UCLA;   1996-97, Assoc. Prof., UCLA;   1994-96, Asst. Prof., UCLA

1991 – 94  
Research Staff, IBM T.J. Watson Res. Labs, Yorktown, NY

UC Berkeley Miller Fellowship, Postdoctoral Scholar

Rice University, PhD, Chemistry

Rice University, MA, Chemistry

Baylor University, BSc, Chemistry

Jumping In Head First: Dr. Jim Heath Takes Helm of ISB, Looks Toward the Future

Heath, J. R., M. E. Phelps, and L. Hood. 2003. “NanoSystems Biology.” Mol Imaging Biol 5 (5): 312–25. Cite
Hood, L., J. R. Heath, M. E. Phelps, and B. Lin. 2004. “Systems Biology and New Technologies Enable Predictive and Preventative Medicine.” Science 306 (5696): 640–43. Cite
Bunimovich, Y. L., G. Ge, K. C. Beverly, R. S. Ries, L. Hood, and J. R. Heath. 2004. “Electrochemically Programmed, Spatially Selective Biofunctionalization of Silicon Wires.” Langmuir 20 (24): 10630–38. Cite
Fan, R., O. Vermesh, A. Srivastava, B. K. Yen, L. Qin, H. Ahmad, G. A. Kwong, et al. 2008. “Integrated Barcode Chips for Rapid, Multiplexed Analysis of Proteins in Microliter Quantities of Blood.” Nat Biotechnol 26 (12): 1373–78. Cite
Price, N. D., L. B. Edelman, I. Lee, H. Yoo, D. Hwang, G. Carlson, D. J. Galas, J. R. Heath, and L. Hood. 2009. “Systems Biology and the Emergence of Systems Medicine.” In Genomic and Personalized Medicine: From Principles to Practice. Elsevier. Cite
Heath, J. R., M. E. Davis, and L. Hood. 2009. “Nanomedicine Targets Cancer.” Sci Am 300 (2): 44–51. Cite
Shin, Young Shik, F. Remacle, Rong Fan, Kiwook Hwang, Wei Wei, Habib Ahmad, R. D. Levine, and James R. Heath. 2011. “Protein Signaling Networks from Single Cell Fluctuations and Information Theory Profiling.” Biophysical Journal 100 (10): 2378–86. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bpj.2011.04.025. Cite
Shi, Qihui, Lidong Qin, Wei Wei, Feng Geng, Rong Fan, Young Shik Shin, Deliang Guo, Leroy Hood, Paul S. Mischel, and James R. Heath. 2012. “Single-Cell Proteomic Chip for Profiling Intracellular Signaling Pathways in Single Tumor Cells.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 109 (2): 419–24. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1110865109. Cite Download
Wang, Jun, Douglas Tham, Wei Wei, Young Shik Shin, Chao Ma, Habib Ahmad, Qihui Shi, Jenkan Yu, Raphael D. Levine, and James R. Heath. 2012. “Quantitating Cell–Cell Interaction Functions with Applications to Glioblastoma Multiforme Cancer Cells.” Nano Letters 12 (12): 6101–6. https://doi.org/10.1021/nl302748q. Cite
Shi, Q., L. Qin, W. Wei, F. Geng, R. Fan, Y. S. Shin, D. Guo, L. Hood, P. S. Mischel, and J. R. Heath. 2012. “Single-Cell Proteomic Chip for Profiling Intracellular Signaling Pathways in Single Tumor Cells.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 109 (2): 419–24. Cite
Wei, Wei, Young Shik Shin, Chao Ma, Jun Wang, Meltem Elitas, Rong Fan, and James R. Heath. 2013. “Microchip Platforms for Multiplex Single-Cell Functional Proteomics with Applications to Immunology and Cancer Research.” Genome Medicine 5 (8): 75. https://doi.org/10.1186/gm479. Cite Download
Wei, Wei, Qihui Shi, Francoise Remacle, Lidong Qin, David B. Shackelford, Young Shik Shin, Paul S. Mischel, R. D. Levine, and James R. Heath. 2013. “Hypoxia Induces a Phase Transition within a Kinase Signaling Network in Cancer Cells.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 110 (15): E1352-1360. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1303060110. Cite
Yu, Jing, Jing Zhou, Alex Sutherland, Wei Wei, Young Shik Shin, Min Xue, and James R. Heath. 2014. “Microfluidics-Based Single-Cell Functional Proteomics for Fundamental and Applied Biomedical Applications.” Annual Review of Analytical Chemistry (Palo Alto, Calif.) 7: 275–95. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-anchem-071213-020323. Cite
Yu, Jing, Jing Zhou, Alex Sutherland, Wei Wei, Young Shik Shin, Min Xue, and James R. Heath. 2014. “Microfluidics-Based Single-Cell Functional Proteomics for Fundamental and Applied Biomedical Applications.” Annual Review of Analytical Chemistry 7 (1): 275–95. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-anchem-071213-020323. Cite
Xue, Min, Wei Wei, Yapeng Su, Jungwoo Kim, Young Shik Shin, Wilson X. Mai, David A. Nathanson, and James R. Heath. 2015. “Chemical Methods for the Simultaneous Quantitation of Metabolites and Proteins from Single Cells.” Journal of the American Chemical Society 137 (12): 4066–69. https://doi.org/10.1021/jacs.5b00944. Cite
Wei, Wei, Young Shik Shin, Min Xue, Tomoo Matsutani, Kenta Masui, Huijun Yang, Shiro Ikegami, et al. 2016. “Single-Cell Phosphoproteomics Resolves Adaptive Signaling Dynamics and Informs Targeted Combination Therapy in Glioblastoma.” Cancer Cell 29 (4): 563–73. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ccell.2016.03.012. Cite
Xue, Min, Wei Wei, Yapeng Su, Dazy Johnson, and James R. Heath. 2016. “Supramolecular Probes for Assessing Glutamine Uptake Enable Semi-Quantitative Metabolic Models in Single Cells.” Journal of the American Chemical Society 138 (9): 3085–93. https://doi.org/10.1021/jacs.5b12187. Cite
Pearl, Jocelynn R., Laura M. Heath, Dani E. Bergey, John P. Kelly, Corrie Smith, Mercy Y. Laurino, Avery Weiss, et al. 2017. “Enhanced Retinal Responses in Huntington’s Disease Patients.” Journal of Huntington’s Disease 6 (3): 237–47. https://doi.org/10.3233/JHD-170255. Cite
Tang, Yin, Zhuo Wang, Ziming Li, Jungwoo Kim, Yuliang Deng, Yan Li, James R. Heath, Wei Wei, Shun Lu, and Qihui Shi. 2017. “High-Throughput Screening of Rare Metabolically Active Tumor Cells in Pleural Effusion and Peripheral Blood of Lung Cancer Patients.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 114 (10): 2544–49. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1612229114. Cite
Su, Yapeng, Wei Wei, Lidia Robert, Min Xue, Jennifer Tsoi, Angel Garcia-Diaz, Blanca Homet Moreno, et al. 2017. “Single-Cell Analysis Resolves the Cell State Transition and Signaling Dynamics Associated with Melanoma Drug-Induced Resistance.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 114 (52): 13679–84. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1712064115. Cite
Saltz, Joel, Rajarsi Gupta, Le Hou, Tahsin Kurc, Pankaj Singh, Vu Nguyen, Dimitris Samaras, et al. 2018. “Spatial Organization and Molecular Correlation of Tumor-Infiltrating Lymphocytes Using Deep Learning on Pathology Images.” Cell Reports 23 (1): 181-193.e7. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2018.03.086. Cite Download
Li, Zhonghan, Hanjun Cheng, Shiqun Shao, Xiang Lu, Li Mo, Jonathan Tsang, Pu Zeng, et al. 2018. “Surface Immobilization of Redox-Labile Fluorescent Probes: Enabling Single-Cell Co-Profiling of Aerobic Glycolysis and Oncogenic Protein Signaling Activities.” Angewandte Chemie (International Ed. in English). https://doi.org/10.1002/anie.201803034. Cite
Heath, Laura, Shelly L. Gray, Denise M. Boudreau, Ken Thummel, Karen L. Edwards, Stephanie M. Fullerton, Paul K. Crane, and Eric B. Larson. 2018. “Cumulative Antidepressant Use and Risk of Dementia in a Prospective Cohort Study.” Journal of the American Geriatrics Society 66 (10): 1948–55. https://doi.org/10.1111/jgs.15508. Cite
Sibener, Leah V., Ricardo A. Fernandes, Elizabeth M. Kolawole, Catherine B. Carbone, Fan Liu, Darren McAffee, Michael E. Birnbaum, et al. 2018. “Isolation of a Structural Mechanism for Uncoupling T Cell Receptor Signaling from Peptide-MHC Binding.” Cell 174 (3): 672-687.e27. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2018.06.017. Cite Download
McCarthy, Amy M., Jungwoo Kim, A. Katrine Museth, Ryan K. Henning, John E. Heath, Emma Winson, Joseph J. Oh, Jingxin Liang, Sunga Hong, and James R. Heath. 2018. “Allosteric Inhibitor of KRas Identified Using a Barcoded Assay Microchip Platform.” Analytical Chemistry 90 (15): 8824–30. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.analchem.8b00706. Cite Download
Xu, Alexander M., Qianhe Liu, Kaitlyn L. Takata, Sarah Jeoung, Yapeng Su, Igor Antoshechkin, Sisi Chen, Matthew Thomson, and James R. Heath. 2018. “Integrated Measurement of Intracellular Proteins and Transcripts in Single Cells.” Lab on a Chip. https://doi.org/10.1039/c8lc00639c. Cite
Wen, Patrick Y., Mehdi Touat, Brian M. Alexander, Ingo K. Mellinghoff, Shakti Ramkissoon, Christine S. McCluskey, Kristine Pelton, et al. 2019. “Buparlisib in Patients With Recurrent Glioblastoma Harboring Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinase Pathway Activation: An Open-Label, Multicenter, Multi-Arm, Phase II Trial.” Journal of Clinical Oncology: Official Journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, JCO1801207. https://doi.org/10.1200/JCO.18.01207. Cite
Agnew, Heather D., Matthew B. Coppock, Matthew N. Idso, Bert T. Lai, JingXin Liang, Amy M. McCarthy-Torrens, Carmen M. Warren, and James R. Heath. 2019. “Protein-Catalyzed Capture Agents.” Chemical Reviews. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.chemrev.8b00660. Cite
Su, Yapeng, Marcus Bintz, Yezi Yang, Lidia Robert, Alphonsus H. C. Ng, Victoria Liu, Antoni Ribas, James R. Heath, and Wei Wei. 2019. “Phenotypic Heterogeneity and Evolution of Melanoma Cells Associated with Targeted Therapy Resistance.” PLoS Computational Biology 15 (6): e1007034. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pcbi.1007034. Cite Download
Peng, Songming, Jesse M. Zaretsky, Alphonsus H. C. Ng, William Chour, Michael T. Bethune, Jongchan Choi, Alice Hsu, et al. 2019. “Sensitive Detection and Analysis of Neoantigen-Specific T Cell Populations from Tumors and Blood.” Cell Reports 28 (10): 2728-2738.e7. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2019.07.106. Cite
Liang, JingXin, David N. Bunck, Anvita Mishra, Sunga Hong, Matthew N. Idso, and James R. Heath. 2019. “Inhibition of Heme Sequestration of Histidine-Rich Protein 2 Using Multiple Epitope-Targeted Peptides.” Journal of Peptide Science: An Official Publication of the European Peptide Society 25 (9): e3203. https://doi.org/10.1002/psc.3203. Cite
Su, Yapeng, Guideng Li, Melissa E. Ko, Hanjun Cheng, Ronghui Zhu, Min Xue, Jessica Wang, et al. 2019. “Trajectories from Snapshots: Integrated Proteomic and Metabolic Single-Cell Assays Reveal Multiple Independent Adaptive Responses to Drug Tolerance in a BRAF-Mutant Melanoma Cell Line.” BioRxiv, 767988. https://doi.org/10.1101/767988. Cite Download
Ng, Alphonsus H. C., Songming Peng, Alexander M. Xu, Won Jun Noh, Katherine Guo, Michael T. Bethune, William Chour, et al. 2019. “MATE-Seq: Microfluidic Antigen-TCR Engagement Sequencing.” Lab on a Chip 19 (18): 3011–21. https://doi.org/10.1039/C9LC00538B. Cite Download
Earls, John C., Noa Rappaport, Laura Heath, Tomasz Wilmanski, Andrew T. Magis, Nicholas J. Schork, Gilbert S. Omenn, Jennifer Lovejoy, Leroy Hood, and Nathan D. Price. 2019. “Multi-Omic Biological Age Estimation and Its Correlation With Wellness and Disease Phenotypes: A Longitudinal Study of 3,558 Individuals.” The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences 74 (Supplement_1): S52–60. https://doi.org/10.1093/gerona/glz220. Cite
Zhu, Yanni, Drake J. Smith, Yang Zhou, Yan-Ruide Li, Jiaji Yu, Derek Lee, Yu-Chen Wang, et al. 2019. “Development of Hematopoietic Stem Cell-Engineered Invariant Natural Killer T Cell Therapy for Cancer.” Cell Stem Cell 25 (4): 542-557.e9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.stem.2019.08.004. Cite
Lu, Yue, Byung-Kuk Yoo, Alphonsus H. C. Ng, Jungwoo Kim, Sinchul Yeom, Jau Tang, Milo M. Lin, Ahmed H. Zewail, and James R. Heath. 2019. “4D Electron Microscopy of T Cell Activation.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 116 (44): 22014–19. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1914078116. Cite
Heath, James R. 2019. “Framing Technology Challenges Associated with Improving Cancer Immunotherapies.” Lab on a Chip 19 (20): 3366–67. https://doi.org/10.1039/c9lc90103e. Cite
Su, Yapeng, Melissa E. Ko, Hanjun Cheng, Ronghui Zhu, Min Xue, Jessica Wang, Jihoon W. Lee, et al. 2020. “Multi-Omic Single-Cell Snapshots Reveal Multiple Independent Trajectories to Drug Tolerance in a Melanoma Cell Line.” Nature Communications 11 (1): 2345. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-15956-9. Cite Download
Idso, Matthew N., Ajay Suresh Akhade, Mario L. Arrieta-Ortiz, Bert T. Lai, Vivek Srinivas, James P. Hopkins, Ana Oliveira Gomes, Naeha Subramanian, Nitin Baliga, and James R. Heath. 2020. “Antibody-Recruiting Protein-Catalyzed Capture Agents to Combat Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria.” Chemical Science 11 (11): 3054–67. https://doi.org/10.1039/C9SC04842A. Cite Download Download