Dr. Le received his Ph.D. degree in Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics (with Owen N. Witte), and a medical degree (M.D.) from the Medical Scientist Training Program at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).  He completed an Internship in Internal Medicine at UCLA/St. Mary Medical Center, residency training in Dermatology and a postdoctoral fellowship in Cancer Biology (with Luis F. Parada) from University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.  He is board certified by the American Board of Dermatology.  Dr. Le sees patients in the Dermatology clinic and at the UTSW Comprehensive Neurofibromatosis clinic.

As a principal investigator in cancer biology, his laboratory investigates early, initiating genetic and microenvironmental events that regulate tumorigenesis.  His research group focuses on: (1) identifying the cells of origin of tumorigenesis (how do certain type of cancers originate and develop from adult stem/progenitor cells?); and (2) elucidating the roles of tumor microenvironment in cancer development (how do neighboring non-cancerous cells dictate cancer development and progression?). His laboratory dissects these cellular and molecular mechanisms of tumorigenesis from the developmental perspective. They utilize Neurofibromatosis Type I (NF1), a common tumor predisposition human genetic disorder, as a model to address these two fundamental issues of cancer biology as well as elucidating cutaneous nervous system development and regeneration.  His major research goals are to understand mechanisms that initiate Neurofibroma genesis and drive their malignant transformation as well as to develop novel therapeutic targets for Neurofibroma.  Research in Dr. Le's laboratory is supported by R01 grant from the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health as well as grants from the U.S. Department of Defense and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund.


Graduate School
University of California - Los Angeles (2002), Microbiology, Immunology & Molecular Genetics
Medical School
University of California, Los Angeles (2003)
Saint Mary's Medical Center-Long Beach (2004), Internal Medicine
University of Texas Southwestern Medical School (2007), Dermatology
UT Southwestern Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (2009), Cancer Biology

Clinical Interest

Skin Disorders

  • Acne
  • Biopsies
  • Chronic Cellulitis
  • Eczema
  • Nevi (Moles)
  • Patients with Multiple Moles
  • Pigmented Lesions
  • Previous Skin Cancers
  • Psoriasis
  • Skin Cancers
  • Skin Check
  • Transplant Patients

Treatment of Neurofibromatosis

  • Neurofibromatosis Type 1 (NF1)

Research Interest

  • Cancer Biology
  • Neurofibromatosis
  • Stem Cell Biology


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Tumor segmentation of whole-body magnetic resonance imaging in neurofibromatosis type 1 patients: tumor burden correlates
Heffler. M.A., Le, L.Q., Xi, Y., Chhabra, A. Skeletal Radiology 2017 46(1): 93-99
Identification of hair shaft progenitors that create a niche for hair pigmentation
Liao, C.P., Booker, R.C., Morrison, S.J., Le, L.Q. Genes & Development 2017 31(8): 744-756.
Defining the Research Landscape for Dermal Neurofibromas
Le, L.Q., Kesterson, R.A., Gutmann, D.H. Oncology Times 2016 38(18): 14-15
The roles of nerve microenvironment for neurofibroma development
Liao, C.P., Pradhan, S., Chen, Z., Patel, A., Liu, C., Booker, R. and Le, L.Q. Oncotarget 2016 7(38): 61500 - 08 61500 - 08
Cells of origin in the embryonic nerve roots for NF1-associated plexiform neurofibroma
Chen, Z., Lui, C., Patel, A., Liao, C.P., Wang, Y., Le, L.Q. Cancer Cell 2015 26(5): 695-706
BET Bromodomain Inhibition Triggers Apoptosis of NF1-associated Malignant Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumors through Bim Induction
Patel, A., Liao, C.P., Chen, Z., Lui, C., Wang, Y., Le, L.Q. Cell Reports 2014 6(1): 81-92
CXCR4/CXCL12 mediate autocrine cell cycle progression in NF1-associated malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors
Mo, W., Chen, J., Patel, A., Zhang, L., Chau, V., Li, Y, Cho, W., Lim, K., McKay, R., Lev, D., Le, L.Q. (Co-corresponding author) and Parada, L. (Co-corresponding author) Cell 2013 152 (5)1077-1090
Preclinical therapeutic efficacy of a novel pharmacologic inducer of apoptosis in malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors
Chau, V., Lim, S.K., Mo, W., Liu, C., Patel, A.J., McKay, R.M., Wei, S., Posner, B.A., De Brabander, J.K., Williams, N.S., Parada, L.F., Le, L.Q. Cancer Research 2013 74(2): 586-97
Skin-derived precursors as a source of progenitors for cutaneous nerve regeneration
Chen, Z., Pradhan, S., Liu, C. and Le, L.Q. Stem Cells 2012 30 (10) 2261-2270.
Susceptible Stages in Schwann cells for NF1-Associated Plexiform Neurofibroma Development
Le, L.Q. (Corresponding author), Liu, C., Shipman, T., Chen, Z., Suter, U., Parada, L.F. Cancer Research 2011 71(13) 4686-95

Honors & Awards

  • Elected to membership in the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI)
  • Thomas L. Shields, M.D. Endowed Professorship in Dermatology
  • Elisabeth Reed Wagner Fund for Research and Clinical Care in Neurofibromatosis and Cardiothoracic Surgery
  • U.S. Department of Defense-Investigator Initiated Research Program Awards
  • European Society for Dermatological Research/Society for Investigative Dermatology Collegiality Travel Awards
  • U.S. Department of Defense-Neurofibromatosis Research Program New Investigator Awards
  • Victor Newcomer Award from the Pacific Dermatologic Association
  • Outstanding Teaching Award from Dermatology residents
  • Disease-Oriented Clinical Scholars (DOCS) Award
  • Career Awards for Medical Scientists from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund
  • President's Research Council Distinguished Young Researcher Award (UTSW)
  • The American Academy of Dermatology Young Investigator Award
  • The Dermatology Foundation Physician Scientist Career Development Award

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI) (2015)
  • American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) (2013)
  • Leaders Society - Dermatology Foundation (2013)
  • Texas Dermatological Society
  • The American Academy of Dermatology
  • The Society for Investigative Dermatology
  • UCLA Association of Chemists and Biochemists