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Sui-Seng Tee, PhD

Academic Title:

Assistant Professor

Primary Appointment:

Diagnostic Radiology and Nuclear Medicine

Additional Title:

Assistant Professor


670 W. Baltimore Street, Baltimore, MD 21201,

Phone (Primary):


Education and Training

2014 - 2018   Research Associate, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, NY

2012 - 2014   Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Stanford University, CA

2007 - 2011   PhD Biochemistry, Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, UK

2004 - 2007   BA (Hons) Natural Science, Christ’s College, University of Cambridge, UK


My lab is interested in the intersection of cancer signaling pathways and metabolism, with the ultimate aim to translate these findings for novel metabolic imaging applications.

Hyperpolarized magnetic resonance spectroscopy (HP-MRS) is a unqiue metabolic imaging platform that enables real-time, non-invasive detection of metabolic flux in living cells and model organisms. I have pioneered the development of reporter genes for HP-MRS by genetically modifying cells to over-express bacterial and mammalian enzymes. Leveraging my expertise in molecular biology, I am now investigating oncogenic signaling and metabolic pathways.

Specifically, I am interested in using targeted therapeutics to inhibit specific pathways mutated in cancers and investigating the metabolic consequence of inhibition. Using this information, we will design novel metabolic imaging probes for both diagnosing/staging cancer as well as assessing treatment response and development of resistance.

Research/Clinical Keywords

Metabolism, Hyperpolarized, Magnetic resonance imaging, Magnetic resonance spectroscopy, Cancer, Gene reporter, Biochemistry, Fructose, Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, NAFLD, steatosis, NASH, steatohepatitis, Hepatocellular carcinoma, HCC, liver cancer, ketohexokinase, fructokinase

Highlighted Publications

a)    Patrick, P.S., Hammersley, J., Loizou, L., Kettunen, M.I., Rodrigues, T.B., Hu, D.E., Tee. S.S., Hesketh, R., Lyons, S.K., Soloviev, D., Lewis, D.Y., Aime, S., Fulton, S.M., Brindle, K.M., Dual-modality gene reporter for in vivo imaging, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. (2014)

b)    Ye, D., Shuhendler, AJ., Cui, L., Tong, L., Tee, S.S., Tikhomirov, G., Felsher, D.W., Rao, J., Bioorthogonal cyclization-mediated in situ self-assembly of small-molecule probes for imaging caspase activity in vivo. Nat. Chem. (2014)

c)    Dzien, P.,* Tee, S.S., * Kettunen, M.I.,  Lyons, S.K., Larkin T., Hu, D.E., Rodrigues, T.B., Serrao, E., Marco-Rius, I., Mannion, E.,  D‘Santos, P., Kennedy, B.W., Brindle K.M., 13C magnetic resonance spectroscopy measurements with hyperpolarized [1-13C] pyruvate can be used to detect the expression of transgenic pyruvate decarboxylase activity in vivo, Magn. Reson. Med. (2015)

d)    Digialleonardo, V., Tee, S.S., Aldeborgh, H.,  Eskandari, E., Jeong, S., Poot, A., Truong, S., Alvarez, J.A., Keshari, K.R., High-throughput indirect quantitation of 13C enriched metabolites using 1H NMR, Anal. Chem. (2016)

e)    Tee, S.S., Digialleonardo, V., Eskandari, E., Jeong, S., Poot, A., Truong, S., Alvarez, J.A., Aldeborgh, H., Keshari, K.R., Sampling Hyperpolarized Molecules Utilizing a 1 Tesla Permanent Magnet. Sci. Rep. (2016)

f)    Tee, S.S., Park, J., Billingsley, K., Josan, S., Hurd, R., Spielman, D., 2-deoxyglucose sensitizes cancer cells to PKM2 activation, Oncotarget (2017)

g)    Tee, S.S., Suster, I., Truong, S., Digialleonardo, V., Eskandari, R., Jeong, S., Alvarez, J.A., Aldeborgh, H., Keshari, K.R., Targeted AKT inhibition in prostate cancer cells and spheroids reduces aerobic glycolysis and conversion of hyperpolarized [1-13C] pyruvate to [1-13C] lactate. Mol. Cancer Res. (2018)

h)    Granlund KL*, Tee SS*, Vargas HA, Lyashchenko SK, Reznik E, Fine S, Laudone V, Eastham JA, Touijer KA, Reuter VE, Gonen M, Sosa RE, Nicholson D, Guo YW, Chen AP, Tropp J, Robb F, Hricak H, Keshari KR. Hyperpolarized MRI of Human Prostate Cancer Reveals Increased Lactate with Tumor Grade Driven by Monocarboxylate Transporter 1. Cell Metab. (2019)

i)     Tee SS, Kim N, Cullen Q, Eskandari R, Mamakhanyan A, Srouji RM, Chirayil R, Jeong S, Shakiba M, Kastenhuber ER, Chen S, Sigel C, Lowe SW, Jarnagin WR, Thompson CB, Schietinger A, Keshari KR. Ketohexokinase-mediated fructose metabolism is lost in hepatocellular carcinoma and can be leveraged for metabolic imaging. Sci Adv. (2022)

Grants and Contracts

NIH National Cancer Institute R21CA245492-01A1, Principal Investigator

Links of Interest

Job Opportunities

We are always interested in having motivated individuals join our research team! Currently, there are postdoctoral and research assistant openings. Please send an email to discuss mutual interests.