No-Hee Park

No-Hee Park, DMD, PhD

Dean Emeritus and Distinguished Professor of Dentistry, School of Dentistry
Distinguished Professor of Medicine, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA



Contact Information

Scientific Interests

Dr. No-Hee Park is a prominent scientist in oral and craniofacial research with 170 scientific publications in distinguished research journals. His major research activities have been in oral (head and neck) cancer and aging research. Park's contribution to the understanding of the mechanisms of oral cancer development is enormous, and resulted in new mode of therapy. In the early stage of his career (1975-1983), Park developed animal models to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy of antiviral agents and to study the molecular mechanisms of numerous antiviral agents (e.g., Zovirax) against herpes simplex virus.

In later stages of his research career (since 1983), Park began to investigate the mechanisms of human oral cancer development. Initially, he found the combined carcinogenicity of herpes simplex virus (HSV, the virus that causes cold sores around the human mouth) and cancer-causing chemicals found in tobacco. Then he investigated and clearly documented the combined role of tobacco (or chemical carcinogens derived from tobacco extract) and the virus on the development of oral cancer in laboratory animals. More recently, Park:

  1. developed an in vitro system (extremely useful for studying the mechanisms of oral cancer development) and clearly documented the role of human papillomavirus (HPV, the virus that causes warts and may be related to other cancers) in the development of oral cancer;
  2. clearly documented the close association between chromosome (cellular DNA) instability and cancer development;
  3. developed many cell lines that are useful for cancer research;
  4. documented a new aging model in test tubes, using cells derived from the human mouth; and
  5. successfully converted normal human epithelial cells into mesenchymal cells, which were able to differentiate to bony cells and fat cells.

Currently his major interests are in the areas of cellular aging, molecular carcinogenesis and stem cell research. Through his cancer and aging research, Park has provided significant contributions to enhance the wellbeing of individuals and society, particularly by elucidating the role of human papillomavirus in the development of human cancer.

Highlighted Publications

Perez RE, Shen H, Duan L, Kim RH, Kim T, Park NH, Maki CG. Modeling the Etiology of p53-mutated Cancer Cells. J Biol Chem. 2016 May 6;291(19):10131-47. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M116.724781. Epub 2016 Mar 28.

Kim RH, Kang MK, Kim T, Yang P, Bae S, Williams DW, Phung S, Shin KH, Hong C, Park NH. Regulation of p53 during senescence in normal human keratinocytes. Aging Cell. 2015 Oct;14(5):838-46. doi: 10.1111/acel.12364. Epub 2015 Jul 1.

Yu B, Chang J, Liu Y, Li J, Kevork K, Al-Hezaimi K, Graves DT, Park NH, Wang CY. Wnt4 signaling prevents skeletal aging and inflammation by inhibiting nuclear factor-KappaB. Nat Med. 2014 Sep;20(9):1009-17. doi: 10.1038/nm.3586. Epub 2014 Aug 10. Erratum in: Nat Med. 2015 Sep;21(9):1101.

Mehrazarin S, Chen W, Oh JE, Liu ZX, Kang KL, Yi JK, Kim RH, Shin KH, Park NH, Kang MK. The p63 Gene Is Regulated by Grainyhead-like 2 (GRHL2) through Reciprocal Feedback and Determines the Epithelial Phenotype in Human Keratinocytes. J Biol Chem. 2015 Aug 7;290(32):19999-20008. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M115.659144. Epub 2015 Jun 17.

Ye L, Fan Z, Yu B, Chang J, Al Hezaimi K, Zhou X, Park NH, Wang CY. Histone demethylases KDM4B and KDM6B promotes osteogenic differentiation of human MSCs. Cell Stem Cell. 2012 Jul 6;11(1):50-61. doi: 10.1016/j.stem.2012.04.009.