Pharmacy Website

Faculty Profile


Ah-Ng Tony Kong, Ph.D.
Distinguished Professor and Glaxo Endowed Professor of Pharmaceutics
Director of Graduate Program in Pharmaceutical Science

Rutgers University
Department of Pharmaceutics
Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy. Room 228/226
Piscataway. NJ 08854

(848) 445-6368
FAX: (732) 445-3134




Dr. Ah-Ng Tony Kong is Distinguished Professor, Glaxo Endowed Chair in Pharmaceutics and Director of the Graduate Program in Pharmaceutical Sciences. He is Co-Leader of the Carcinogenesis and Cancer Prevention Program and Co-Director of the PK-PD facility Core at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey (CINJ). He obtained his B.S. Pharmacy (First Class Standing), University of Alberta, Canada and obtained his PhD in Pharmaceutics, Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics under the mentorship of Professor William J. Jusko from the State University of New York at Buffalo. He performed his first postdoctoral training with Dr. Daniel W. Nebert in molecular biology of Phase I and Phase II drug metabolizing enzymes and second postdoctoral training with Dr. Lawrence E. Semelson and Dr. Richard D. Klausner in cellular and molecular signaling of T-cell activation both at the National Institutes of Health. He was previously on the faculty of Jefferson Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University and College of Pharmacy, University of Illinois at Chicago prior to joining Rutgers in 2001. He has trained more than 40 Ph.D. students, postdoctors and visiting scientists. He has published more than 200 original research, review articles and book chapters in pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, PK-PD modeling, drug metabolism, pharmacogenomics, cellular signaling, Nrf2-mediated anti-oxidative stress and anti-inflammatory responses, and cancer chemoprevention by dietary phytochemicals. He has been continuously receiving funding from the NIH since 1993 and has continued to serve on numerous NIH panels since 1998. He is an Editor of Pharmaceutical Research, Associate Editor of Molecular Carcinogenesis and Life Sciences and member of Editorial Board of nine scientific journals such as Cancer Prevention Research, Carcinogenesis and Biopharmaceutics and Drug Disposition. He teaches Introduction to Biopharmaceutics and Pharmacokinetics to the PharmD students and Advanced Pharmacokinetics/ Pharmacodynamics and Advanced Drug Metabolism to the PhD/MS students.


Kong Lab Home Page

Book Editor: “Inflammation, Oxidative Stress, and Cancer: Dietary Approaches for Cancer Prevention”. CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group. August 7, 2013

Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics (PK/PD) Shared Resource

Carcinogenesis and Chemoprevention Program

Molecular Biosiences

View Dr. Kong's publications in Pub Med[Author]


Professor Ah-Ng Tony Kong’s current interest integrates biopharmaceutics; drug targeting against biomarkers (viral-based shRNA); drug absorption of various formulations of drug products; drug metabolism (phase I, II drug metabolizing enzymes and phase III transporters); pharmacogenomics (microarray, CHiP-CHIP technology, bioinformatics); Nrf2-mediated anti-oxidative stress and anti-inflammatory signaling; in vivo animal cancer models; dietary phytochemicals; cancer chemoprevention; epigenetics/epigenomics; pharmacokinetics/ pharmacodynamics; and PK-PD modeling. The current research theme in my laboratory integrates pharmacokinetics, pharmacogenomics, drug metabolism/transport, dietary dietary phytochemicals, cancer chemoprevention, Nrf2-mediated redox signaling and pharmacodynamic responses in 3 major foci. (1) Studies of dietary phytochemicals-mediated cellular signaling and cancer chemoprevention. Many dietary phytochemicals have been shown to possess health beneficial effects. My laboratory is utilizing the latest molecular, cellular, genomics, epigenetics/epigenomics, and LC-MS-MS to interrogate the biological responses elicited by these health promoting phytochemicals using a combination of various mammalian cell lines coupled with different animal cancer models including TRAMP (prostate), APCmin (intestinal), AOM-DSS (colon), Nrf2-/- (skin, colon and prostate). (2) Nrf2-mediated redox signaling in anti-oxidative stress and anti-inflammatory. Nrf2 is the key transcription factor regulating the antioxidant response element (ARE)-mediated Phase II drug metabolizing enzymes (DME) /Phase III transporters and anti-oxidative stress genes. The latest molecular, cellular and epigenetics/epigenomics technologies are utilized to study Nrf2-mediated signaling mechanisms in vitro and in vivo. (3) Pharmacokinetics, drug metabolism/transport, pharmacodynamics and personalized medicine. Many phenolic compounds/phytochemicals have poor in vivo bioavailability (systemic absorption) and may render them ineffective and/or required higher doses. We are trying to understand the absorption, metabolism and transport of xenobiotics in vivo resulting in appropriate blood and tissue levels leading to the pharmacodynamic responses in tissues to elicit the biological effects. Differences between individuals (due to genetic polymorphism and or epigenetics) in drug metabolizing enzymes, transporters as well as target sites (receptors, enzymes or RNAs) would yield different responses between individuals to the same doses of drugs or xenobiotics in human.

Selected Publications:

Cheung KL, Lee JH, Shu L, Kim JH, Sacks DB, Kong AN. The Ras GTPase-activating-like Protein IQGAP1 Mediates Nrf2 Protein Activation via the Mitogen-activated Protein Kinase/Extracellular Signal-regulated Kinase (ERK) Kinase (MEK)-ERK Pathway. J Biol Chem. 2013 Aug 2;288(31):22378-86.

Wu TY, Khor TO, Lee JH, Cheung KL, Shu L, Chen C, Kong AN. Pharmacogenetics, Pharmacogenomics and Epigenetics of Nrf2-regulated Xenobioticmetabolizing Enzymes and Transporters by Dietary Phytochemical and Cancer Chemoprevention. Curr Drug Metab. 2013 Jul 1;14(6):688-94.

Kong AN
, Zhang C, Su ZY. Targeting epigenetics for cancer prevention by dietary cancer preventive compounds--the case of miRNA. Cancer Prev Res (Phila). 2013 Jul;6(7):622-4.  (Perspective)

Wu TY, Khor TO, Su ZY, Saw CL, Shu L, Cheung KL, Huang Y, Yu S, Kong AN. Epigenetic Modifications of Nrf2 by 3,3'-diindolylmethane In Vitro in TRAMP C1 Cell Line and In Vivo TRAMP Prostate Tumors. AAPS J. 2013 2013 Jul;15(3):864-74.

Zhang C, Su ZY, Khor TO, Shu L, Kong AN. Sulforaphane Enhances Nrf2 Expression in Prostate Cancer TRAMP C1 Cells through Epigenetic Regulation. Biochem Pharmacol. 2013 May 1;85(9):1398-404.  Epub 2013 Feb 14.

Wang, H., Khor, T.O., Yang, Q., Huang, Y., Wu, T.Y., Saw, C.L.L., Lin, W., Ioannis P. Androulakis, I.P. and Kong, A.N.T. Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics of Phase II Drug Metabolizing/Antioxidant Enzymes Gene Response by Anti-cancer Agent Sulforaphane in Rat Lymphocytes. Mol Pharm. 2012 Oct 1;9(10):2819-27. Epub 2012 Sep 11.

Lee JH, Khor TO, Shu L, Su ZY, Fuentes F, Kong AN. Dietary Phytochemicals and Cancer Prevention: Nrf2 Signaling, Epigenetics, and Cell Death Mechanisms in Blocking Cancer Initiation and Progression. Pharmacol Ther. 2012 Oct 3. pii: S0163-7258(12)00210-0. doi: 10.1016/j.pharmthera.2012.09.008. [Epub ahead of print]

Kim JH, Xu EY, Sacks DB, Lee J, Shu L, Xia B, Kong AN. Identification and Functional Studies of a New Nrf2 partner IQGAP1: A critical role in the stability and transactivation of Nrf2. Antioxidant Redox Signaling. 2012 Jul 15. [Epub ahead of print].

Huang, Y., Khor, T.O., Shu, L. Saw, C.L.L., Wu, T.Y.,  and Kong, A.N. γ-tocopherol enriched mixed tocopherols restores Nrf2 expression in TRAMP prostate tumors in vivo via epigenetic inhibition of CpG methylation of Nrf2 promoter. J. Nutrition 2012 May;142(5):818-23. Epub 2012 Mar 28.

Kim, J.H., Yu, S. Chen, J. D. and Kong, A.N. The nuclear cofactor RAC3/AIB1/SRC-3 enhances Nrf2 signaling by interacting with transactivation domains. Oncogene  2012 Feb 27. doi: 10.1038/onc.2012.59. [Epub ahead of print].

Khor, T.O., Huang Y, Wu TY, Shu L, Lee J, Kong AN. Pharmacodynamics of curcumin as DNA hypomethylation agent in restoring the expression of Nrf2 via promoter CpGs demethylation. Biochem Pharmacol. 2011 Nov 1;82(9):1073-8. Epub 2011 Jul 20

Shu L, Khor TO, Lee JH, Boyanapalli SS, Huang Y, Wu TY, Saw CL, Cheung KL, Kong, A.N.T. Epigenetic CpG Demethylation of the Promoter and Reactivation of the Expression of Neurog1 by Curcumin in Prostate LNCaP Cells.  AAPS J. 2011 Dec;13(4):606-14. Epub 2011 Sep 22.

Lin, W., Hong, J.L., Shen, G., Wu, R.T., Wang, Y., Huang, Q., Heimbach, T., and Kong, A.N.T. Pharmacokinetic Disposition of Dietary Cancer Chemopreventive Compound Dibenzoylmethane (DBM) in the Rats and Impacts of Nanoemulsion and Genetic knockout of Nrf2 in mice. Biopharm. Drug Dispos. 2011 Mar;32(2):65-75. Epub 2010 Dec 16.

Hu, R., Saw, C.L., Yu, R., and Kong, A.N.T. Regulation of Regulation of NF-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) Signaling for Cancer Chemoprevention: Antioxidant Coupled with Anti-inflammatory (review). Antioxid. Redox Signaling 2010 Dec 1;13(11):1679-98. Epub 2010 Aug 17.

Yu, S., Khor, T.O, Cheung, K.L., Li, W., Wu. T.Y., Huang, Y., Foster, B.A., Kan, Y.W., Kong, A.N.T.  Nrf2 Expression Is Regulated by Epigenetic Mechanisms in Prostate Cancer of TRAMP Mice. PLoS One 2010 Jan 5;5(1):e8579.

Cheung, K.L., Kong, A.N.T. Molecular targets of dietary phenethyl isothiocyanate and sulforaphane for cancer chemoprevention. (Invited review). AAPS J. 2010 Mar;12(1):87-97. Epub 2009 Dec 15. PMID: 20013083.

Li, W., Thakor, N,, Xu, E.Y., Huang, Y., Chen, C., Yu, R., Holcik, M., Kong, A.N.T. An internal ribosomal entry site mediates redox-sensitive translation of Nrf2. Nucleic Acids Research 2010 Jan 1;38(3):778-88. Epub 2009 Nov 24.

Shen, G., Kong, A.N.T. Nrf2 Plays an Important Role in Coordinated Regulation of Phase II Drug Metabolism Enzymes and Phase III Drug Transporters (review). Biopharm. Drug Dispos. 30:345-55, 2009.

Keum, Y.S., Khor, T.O., Kwon, K.H., Barve, A., Li, W., Kong, A.N.T. Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics of Broccoli Sprouts on the Suppression of Prostate Cancer in Transgenic Adenocarcinoma of Mouse Prostate (TRAMP) Mice: Implication of Induction of Nrf2, HO-1 and Apoptosis and the Suppression of Akt-dependent Kinase Pathway. Pharmaceutical Research Oct;26(10):2324-31, 2009

Li, W. and Kong, A.-N.T.  Redox mechanisms of Nrf2-mediated antioxidant response. (Review).  Molecular Carcinogenesis. Feb;48(2):91-104, 2009 [2008 July 10; Epub ahead of print]).

Khor, T.O., Keum, Y.-S., Lin, W., Kim, J.H., Hu, R., Shen, G., Gopalkrishnan, A., Reddy, B., Zheng, X., Conney, A., and Kong, A.-N.T.  Inhibitory Effects of Curcumin and Phenethyl isothiocyanate (PEITC) on the Growth of Human PC-3 Prostate Xenografts in Immunodeficient Mice. Cancer Res.66(2):613-621, 2006 (Priority Report). [This manuscript has received quite a lot of media attention].

Li, W., Yu, S.-W., Yuan, X.-L., and Kong, A.-N.T.  Nrf2 possesses a redox-sensitive NES in the Neh5 transactivation domain. J. Biol. Chem. Sep 15;281(37):27251-63, 2006. Epub Jun 21 2006.

Chen, C. and Kong, A.-N.T.  Dietary cancer-chemopreventive compounds: from signaling and gene expression to pharmacological effects (Invited Review). Trends in Pharmacol. Sci. 26(6):318-326, 2005.

Yu, R., Chen, C., Mo, Y., Hebbar, V., Owour, E.D., and Kong, A.-N.T. Activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways induces antioxidant response element-mediated gene expression via Nrf2-dependent mechanism. J. Biol. Chem. 275: 39907-39913, December 22, 2000.

Petersen, D.D., Kong, A.-N.T., Jorge, L.F., Nebert, D.W., and Arias, T.D.  Debrisoquine polymorphism:  Novel CYP2D6 gene BamHI RFLP in the Ngawbe Guaymi Indian of Panama.  Pharmacogenetics  1:136-142, 1991.

Kong, A,-N., Ludwig, E., Slaughter, R., DiStefano, P., DeMasi, J., Middleton, E. and Jusko, W.J. Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamic modeling of direct suppression effects of methylprednisolone on serum cortisol and blood histamine in man.  Clin. Pharmacol. Ther. 46: 616-628, 1989.

Kong, A,-N
., and Jusko, W.J. Definitions and applications of mean transit/residence time to a two-compartment mammillary plasma clearance model.  J. Pharm. Sci 43: 157-165, 1988.

Awards and Honors:

2012     Visiting Professor, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, China
2011     Guest Professor, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing, China


    Elected Member-at-Large, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
2004     Fellow (Elected), American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS)
2003     Alumni Association Distinguished Visitor” under the Alumni Association Rotating Visiting Professorship Program, The King Edward VII College of Medicine and  The Faculties of Medicine, Universities of Malaya and Singapore
1998     Recognized by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy as Teacher of the Year 1998 at the Awards Banquet,Snowmass Village, Colorado, July 21, 1998
1998     “Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award” from the first professional year class, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy
1996     “Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award” from the first professional year class, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy
1994     Young Investigator Award in Pharmacokinetics, Pharmacodynamics and Drug Metabolism from the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS), Sponsored by Burroughs Wellcome Fund