Frederick Tan

Post-Doctoral Fellow
Cellular and Molecular Medicine
fetan at


Ph.D. Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, Caltech, 2014
B.S. Biology, MIT, 2005
B.S. Chemical Engineering, MIT, 2005


Fred received his B.S. in Biology and Chemical Engineering from MIT. As an undergrad, he worked in the laboratory of Dr. Jackie Ying to engineer and characterize hydroxyapatite and silica-based nanoparticles for gene delivery applications. He also worked with Dr. Robert Langer where he helped synthesize and characterize a novel chemotherapeutic agent (dextran-peptide-methotrexate conjugate) for targeting solid tumors. Fred worked briefly at Genzyme Corporation, to conduct research and development for tissue engineering and drug delivery applications. However, it was a brief and exciting exposure to Synthetic Biology in the laboratory of Dr. Drew Endy, which led him to Caltech. He received his doctorate on research conducted in the laboratory of Dr. Michael Elowitz, where he discovered a novel RNA-binding protein regulatory mechanism that connects the activity of developmental signaling pathways to the expression of Nanog, a key regulator of pluripotency gene circuits. As a postdoctoral researcher in the Yeo lab, Fred is interested in deciphering the developmental and pathological roles played by IGF2-mRNA binding proteins.


Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2020. Luo EC, Nathanson JL, Tan FE, Schwartz JL, Schmok JC, Shankar A, Markmiller S, Yee BA, Sathe S, Pratt GA, Scaletta DB, Ha Y, Hill DE, Aigner S, Yeo GW.

Mol Cell. 2018 Dec A Transcriptome-wide Translational Program Defined by LIN28B Expression Level. Tan FE §, Sathe S §, Wheeler EC, Nussbacher JK, Peter S, Yeo GW (§ co-first author )

Mol Cell. 2016 Jan 7;61(1):1-2. Blurred Boundaries: The RNA Binding Protein Lin28A Is Also an Epigenetic Regulator. Tan FE, Yeo GW.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Apr 29;111(17):E1740-8. Brf1 posttranscriptionally regulates pluripotency and differentiation responses downstream of Erk MAP kinase. Tan FE, Elowitz MB