Sunny Chan, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics

Sunny Chan

Contact Info

Office Phone 612-301-2187

Fax 612-626-4074

Office Address:
2231 6th St SE,
CCRB 4-133
Minneapolis, MN 55455

PhD, Pharmacology, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China


Dr. Sunny Chan is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Blood and Marrow Transplant & Cellular Therapy. Dr. Chan received his BSc in Pharmacology (1998) and BASc in Computer Engineering (2001) from the University of British Columbia, Canada, and PhD in Pharmacology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2005. He did his postdoctoral fellowship at the National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan, and at the University of Minnesota in the laboratory of Dr. Michael Kyba. Dr. Chan joined the faculty of the University of Minnesota in 2015. 

Awards & Recognition

  • Basic Science Paper of the Year (Assistant Professor), Department of Pediatrics, University of Minnesota (2019)
  • Dr Marvin and Hadassah Bacaner Research Award in Cardiology, University of Minnesota (2014)
  • Development Plan for World-Class Universities and Research Centers of Excellence Fellowship, National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan (2008-2009)
  • Chinese Gold & Silver Exchange Society Scholarship in Medicine, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong (2004)
  • Research

    Research Summary/Interests

    Dr. Chan’s research focuses on regenerative medicine for muscular dystrophies using cardiac and skeletal myogenic progenitors derived from pluripotent stem cells. He is developing methods to model cardiopharyngeal mesoderm, a cell population that forms second heart field and head muscle cells. The goal is to produce cell types appropriate for studying the physiology of muscular dystrophies specific to second heart field and head muscles in vitro and for developing cellular therapy targeting these diseases in vivo. 


    A selection of Dr. Chan’s recent publications

    Chan SS, Arpke RW, Filareto A, Xie N, Pappas MP, Penaloza JS, Perlingeiro RCR, Kyba M (2018). Skeletal muscle stem cells from PSC-derived teratomas have functional regenerative capacity. Cell Stem Cell 23, 74-85

    Chan SS, Hagen HR, Swanson SA, Stewart R, Boll KA, Aho J, Thomson JA, and Kyba M (2016). Development of bipotent cardiac / skeletal myogenic progenitors from MESP1+ mesoderm. Stem Cell Reports 6, 26-34

    Chan SS, Chan HH, and Kyba M (2016). Heterogeneity of Mesp1+ mesoderm revealed by single-cell RNA-seq. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 474, 469-475

    Bedada FB, Chan SS, Metzger SK, Zhang L, Zhang J, Garry DJ, Kamp TJ, Kyba M, and Metzger JM (2014). Acquisition of a quantitative, stoichiometrically conserved ratiometric marker of maturation status in stem-cell derived cardiac myocytes. Stem Cell Reports 3, 594-605

    Chan SS, Shi X, Toyama A, Arpke RW, Dandapat A, Iacovino M, Kang J, Le G, Hagen HR, Garry DJ, and Kyba M (2013). Mesp1 patterns mesoderm into cardiac, hematopoietic, or skeletal myogenic progenitors in a context-dependent manner. Cell Stem Cell 12, 587-601

    Click here to see a complete list of Dr. Chan’s studies which have been published by academic and research journals.