Meet the Team



Charles A. Powell, MD, MBA

Coleman Rabin Professor of Medicine at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY.

CEO, Mount Sinai-National Jewish Health Respiratory Institute

System Chief, Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine

Dr. Charles A. Powell is Professor of Medicine and System Division Chief for Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York and Medical Director of Respiratory Therapy at Mount Sinai Hospital. Dr. Powell completed his medical degree at University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, his residency at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, and his clinical and research fellowships at Boston University School of Medicine. With clinical and research interests in lung cancer and mesothelioma, Dr. Powell’s investigations center on understanding the genetic and susceptibility factors for these diseases, and the molecular events that are important in the early stages of lung cancer development and progression. His numerous articles and abstracts have been published in journals such as the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, American Journal of Pathology, CHEST, Cancer, and the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology. He is a recipient of the American Cancer Society Research Scholar Award, the founding Chair of the Thoracic Oncology Section of the American Thoracic Society, and President-elect of the Fleischner Society.


watanabeHideo Watanabe, MD, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine, Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine and Assistant Professor, Genetics and Genomic Sciences at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Dr. Hideo Watanabe completed his medical degree, internal medicine residency and pulmonology fellowship in Keio University School of Medicine in Japan. During his clinical training in pulmonology, he cared for many lung cancer patients confronting the end-stages of their diseases. This led him to pursue research training, where he studied the role of epigenetic modification in the growth of lung cancer cells at Graduate School of Medicine in Keio University. After witnessing the emergence of a new paradigm of targeted therapeutics led by genome discoveries in cancer, he went on to train at the laboratory of Dr. Meyerson, a world leader in cancer genome analysis, at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Broad Institute. Now he joined faculty in Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai to establish a highly collaborative program that utilizes functional genomics and state-of-the-art technologies to characterize various cellular lineages in normal lung as well as in lung cancer subtypes, and identify and elucidate the mechanism of the lineage programs that are aberrantly fixated in lung cancer.


Abhilasha Sinha, PhD, Assistant Professor

Abhilasha Sinha is Assistant Professor in Division of Pulmonary in Dr Powell’s team. She worked as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Charles Powell’s lab 2017-2022. She obtained her PhD from National Institute of Immunology, New Delhi, India in 2015. Her PhD work elucidated role of cancer testis antigen SPAG9 in breast tumorigenesis and its role in tumor invasion and metastasis. After completing her PhD she moved to US for her 1st postdoctoral training at Cancer Institute, University of Mississippi Medical Center, MS. Her research in University of Mississippi focussed on understanding the cross-talk between tumor and microenvironment in breast cancer model. In Dr Powell’s lab she is interesting in identifying novel therapeutic targets in early stage Lung adenocarcinoma. She is also involved in genomic analysis of early stage lung adenocarcinoma to differentiate indolent and invasive tumor phenotype. She has published several peer reviewed research articles during her PhD and postdoc research experience.



Dawei Yang, MD, Pulmonary Attending, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China.Associate Researcher, Department of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary, Critical care and Sleep Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, NY, U.S.

Vice-director of department of Medical Internet of Things (MIOT) of Shanghai Respiratory Research InstitutionSecretary of Chinese Alliance Against Lung CancerResearch Interests: Medical Internet of Things (MIOT), Convergence of Opinion on Recommendations and Evidence (CORE), Lung Cancer, Lung Fibrosis

Dr. Yang is dedicated in early diagnosis of lung cancer and relevant studies, with special interests on the management of pulmonary nodule and validation of diagnostic biomarker panels based on MIOT, CORE, and radiomics artificial intelligence (AI) platform. He is a member of IASLC Prevention, Screening & Early Detection Committee. Since 2011, he has published 17 SCI research articles and 9 as first author, including which on Am J Resp Crit Care (2013), Can Lett (2015, 2020) ,Cancer (2015, 2018, 2020), and Dev Cell (2020), etc. As a presenter for oral or poster presentation in ATS, WCLC, APSR, ISRD couple times. He is one of the peer reviewers for international journals, such as J Cell Mol Med, J Transl Med, etc, and managing editor of Clinical eHealth. He has host one National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC81500078), and three nationwide multicenter clinical studies as sub-PI (NCT01928836, NCT02726633, and NCT02693496). Dr. Yang currently is working in Prof. Charles A. Powell’s lab at Mount Sinai Hospital, focusing on TGFBR2 signaling pathway cross-talking with endothelial cells in lung adenocarcinoma invasion and angiogenesis as well as the animal model and image study of lung fibrosis. Recently Dr. Yang joined the Prof. Chunxue Bai team to help develop the nCapp cloud plus terminal platform to assist international physician diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19.


Dr. Peipei Guo, is an Assistant Professor at Division of Pulmonary Medicine, Department of Medicine at Icahn School of Medicine. Dr. Guo received her PhD degree in Physiology, Biophysics and Systems Biology Program at Cornell University. Her thesis work illustrates the crosstalk between vascular endothelial cell-derived Notch ligand Jagged2 in regulating hematopoietic stem cell homeostasis and regeneration. Dr. Guo completed her postdoctoral work on the histone variant H3.3 regulation of adult HSC self-renewal and lineage differentiation at Dr. Shahin Rafii’s lab at Ansary Stem Cell Institute, Weill Cornell Medicine, in collaboration with Dr. Bi-sen Ding and Dr. David Allis. She had novel findings that H3.3 represses the aberrant myelopoiesis and biased granulocyte macrophage progenitor differentiation of adult HSCs. Dr. Guo’s current research interests include dissecting the endothelial cell-derived epigenetic factor H3.3 or Notch ligand Jagged2 in mediating lung injuries and lung regeneration, the crosstalk between lung fibrosis and bone marrow fibrosis. Dr. Guo is also contributing her insights with endothelial cell biology in the context of lung adenocarnoma research at Dr. Powell’s group.



Lab Alumini

Soojeong Kang, PhD, is an Associate Researcher in the Thoracic Oncology Laboratory at Mount Sinai. She obtained her PhD Degree from the College of Medicine at Dong-A University, South Korea. As a graduate student she developed an interest in studying signaling pathways contributing to the pathophysiology of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, as well as learned the techniques to construct viral vectors and to generate transgenic animals. After joining Mount Sinai, she expanded her training by screening and testing small molecules, and identifying, delivering and validating novel gene therapeutic targets to treat various disease models including diabetic cardiomyopathy. Currently, she focuses on characterizing the molecular mechanisms underlying the acquisition of invasiveness of lung adenocarcinoma.

stephaniewatanabe2resizedStephanie Tuminello, BS is an Associate Researcher in the Pulmonary Department of The Mount Sinai Hospital.  Her research focuses on the epigenetics of lung cancer- specifically what role methylation status of histones might have on gene expression.  She received her Bachelors of Science Degree from Stony Brook University with a major in Genetics and Developmental Biology. Stephanie began working in research as an undergraduate at the Centers for Infectious Disease at Stony Brook University, where she helped investigate proteins of the yersenia bacteria, the infectious agent responsible for the plague. She is now in the first year of her Master’s degree at the CUNY School of Public Health pursing a degree in Biostatistics.

Pedro Toruno is an Associate Researcher for Department of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine. He completed his undergraduate degree in Psychology at Florida International University, and went on to complete his Masters of Science in Neuroscience at City University of New York, Staten Island. Pedro began his research in the Department of Neurobiology at the Institute of Basic Research in Staten Island under direction and supervision of Jeffrey Goodman PhD. There, his research focus was on FMRP as a biomarker for epileptogenesis using a Luminex assay. He then moved to the Center for Developmental Neuroscience and Physical Therapy at CUNY Staten Island to work for  Zaghoul Ahmed DPT, PhD to investigate the effects of trans-spinal direct current stimulation on cell proliferation, and migration as well as its effects on spasticity after spinal cord injury in mice.  Additionally, Pedro worked in the Medical Services Division at United Nations collecting, and analyzing data on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Ebola response, and readiness for UN field officers. In 2016, he joined Mount Sinai to work with Charles Powell, MD and Claudia Henschke PhD, MD, where he is currently focusing on characterizing the histological differences and biochemical pathways underlying the acquisition of invasions of lung adenocarcinoma in mouse model and human blood and tissue specimens.