BBS Faculty Member - Leonard Zon

Leonard Zon

Grousbeck Professor of Pediatrics

Boston Children's Hospital / HHMI
Karp Research Building, 5th Floor, Room 5211
1 Blackfan Circle
Boston, MA 02115
Tel: 617-919-2069
Fax: 617-730-0222
Lab Members: 19 postdoctoral fellows, 6 graduate students
Visit my lab page here.

The laboratory focuses on the developmental biology of hematopoiesis and cancer. We have collected over 30 mutants affecting the hematopoietic system. Some of the mutants represent excellent animal models of human disease. We also have undertaken chemical genetic approach to blood development and have found that prostaglandins upregulates blood stem cells. This has led to a clinical trial to improve engraftment for patients receiving cord blood transplants. We recently developed suppressor screening genetics and found that transcriptional elongation regulates blood cell fate.

The laboratory has also developed zebrafish models of cancer. We have generated a melanoma model in the zebrafish system using transgenics. Transgenic fish get nevi, and in a combination with a p53 mutant fish develop melanomas. We recently found a histone methyltransferase that can accelerate melanoma, and discovered a small molecule that blocks transcription elongation and suppresses melanoma growth.

Last Update: 11/16/2017


For a complete listing of publications click here.



Kaufman CK, Mosimann C, Fan ZP, Yang S, Thomas AJ, Ablain J, Tan JL, Fogley RD, van Rooijen E, Hagedorn EJ, Ciarlo C, White RM, Matos DA, Puller AC, Santoriello C, Liao EC, Young RA, Zon LI. A zebrafish melanoma model reveals emergence of neural crest identity during melanoma initiation. Science. 2016 Jan 29;351(6272):aad2197. PMID: 26823433

Tamplin OJ, Durand EM, Carr LA, Childs SJ, Hagedorn EJ, Li P, Yzaguirre AD, Speck NA,
Zon LI. Hematopoietic stem cell arrival triggers dynamic remodeling of the perivascular niche. Cell. 2015 Jan 15;160(1-2):241-52. PMID:25594182

Li P, Lahvic JL, Binder V, Pugach EK, Riley EB, Tamplin OJ, Panigrahy D, Bowman TV, Barrett FG, Heffner GC, McKinney-Freeman S, Schlaeger TM, Daley GQ, Zeldin DC,
Zon LI. Epoxyeicosatrienoic acids enhance hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell engraftment. Nature. 2015 Jul 22;523(7561):468-71. PMID: 26201599

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of Harvard College