Martin Kang, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of PediatricsHeadshot of Dr. Martin Kang
Darby Children’s Research Institute

Medical University of South Carolina
Darby Children’s Research Institute, Room 508
173 Ashley Avenue
Charleston, SC 29425


Education & Training:

University of British Columbia, Vancouver, 1998, B.M.L.Sc.
Queen’s University, Kingston, 2003, M.Sc. in Pathology
University of British Columbia, Vancouver, 2013, Ph.D. in Medical Genetics
Duke University, Durham, 2016, Postdoctoral Associate
Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, Ottawa, 2021, Postdoctoral Fellow

Research Interests:

Our research goals are to identify novel strategies or therapeutic targets for acquired or inherited pediatric diseases that have little to no treatment options. This includes prolonging the effects of gene therapy by targeting our immune response, exploring intraamniotic gene transfer and editing as therapeutic strategies, and identifying safe and feasible alternative vectors besides viruses for gene transfer. Our lab uses basic science research techniques and preclinical small animal models of disease to achieve these goals. This includes delivery of viral vector-mediated gene therapies such as adeno-associated viruses (AAV) to tissues such as the lungs, heart, and liver; utilizing transgenic and lineage tracing animal models; the application of surgical techniques to these models; the differentiation of human-induced pluripotent stem cells into alveolar epithelial cells to use as model cells; and the post-transcriptional regulation of proteins. The mentorship and training of a diverse group of students and trainees is priority for this lab, and institutional, national, and international collaborations are pursued to achieve our research goals.

Highlight Publications:

  • Kang MH, Hu J, Pratt RE, Hodgkinson CP, Asokan A, Dzau VJ. (2020), Optimizing Delivery for Efficient Cardiac Reprogramming. Biochem Biophys Res Commun., 533, 9-16. PMID: 32917363.
  • Kang MH, van Lieshout LP, Xu L, Domm JM, Vadivel A, Renesme L, Mühlfeld C, Hurskainen M, Mizikova I, Pei Y, van Vloten JP, Thomas SP, Milazzo C, Cyr-Depauw C, Whitsett JA, Nogee LM, Wootton SK, Thébaud B.  (2020), A Lung Tropic AAV Vector Improves Survival in a Mouse Model of Surfactant B Deficiency. Nat Commun., 11, 3929. PMID: 32764559.
  • Jan A, Karasinska JM, Kang MH, de Haan W, Ruddle P, Kaur A, Connolly C, Leavitt BR, Sorensen PH, Hayden MR. (2015), Direct intracerebral delivery of a miR-33 antisense oligonucleotide into mouse brain increases brain ABCA1 expression. Neurosci Lett., 598, 66-72.  PMID: 25957561
  • Brunham LR, Kang MH, Van Karnebeek C, Sadananda SN, Collins JA, Zhang LH, Sayson B, Miao F, Stockler S, Frolich J, Cassiman D, Rabkin SW, Hayden MR. (2015), Clinical, Biochemical, and Molecular Characterization of Novel Mutations in ABCA1 in Families with Tangier Disease. J Inherit Metab Dis Reports., 18, 51-62. PMID: 25308558
  • Kang MH#, Zhang L#, Wijesekara N, de Haan W, Butland S, Bhattacharjee A, Hayden MR. (2013), Regulation of ABCA1 Protein Expression and Function in Hepatic and Pancreatic Islet Cells by miR-145. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol., 33, 2724-2732. (# These authors contributed equally to this work). PMID: 24135019
  • Wijesekara N, Zhang L, Kang MH, Abraham T, Bhattacharjee A, Warnock GL, Verchere CB, Hayden MR. (2012), miR33a modulates ABCA1 expression, cholesterol accumulation and insulin secretion in pancreatic islets. Diabetes., 61, 653-658. PMID: 22315319
  • Huang K, Kang MH, Askew C, Kang R, Sanders SS, Wan J, Davis NG, Hayden MR. (2010), Palmitoylation and function of glial glutamate transporter-1 is reduced in the YAC128 mouse model of Huntington disease. Neurobiol Dis., 40, 207-215. PMID: 20685337
  • Singaraja RR#, Kang MH#, Vaid K, Sanders SS, Vilas GL, Arstikaitis P, Coutinho J, Drisdel RC, El-Husseini AE, Green WN, Berthiaume L and Hayden MR. (2009), Palmitoylation of ABCA1 is essential for its trafficking and function. Circ Res., 105, 138-147. (#These authors contributed equally to this work) PMID: 19556522

Complete NCBI list:


  • Wootton S, van Lieshout L, Thébaud BCF, Kang MH. (2020), ‘Adeno-Associated Virus Particle With Mutated Capsid And Methods Of Use Thereof’, US Patent #10,806,802.

Book Chapter:

  • Kang MH, Thébaud B. (2022), Chapter 5: The differentiation of embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells into airway and alveolar epithelial cells. Current Topics in iPSCs Technology, Volume 17, (A Birbrair, Editor), Academic Press - Elsevier.