Bryan E. Welm, PhD

Research Interests

  • Breast Cancer
  • Mammary Glands, Animal
  • Mammary Glands, Human
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Animal
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental
  • Mammary Tumor Virus, Mouse


Lab Website


  • English

Academic Information

  • Departments: Oncological Sciences - Adjunct Associate Professor, Surgery - Associate Professor
  • Divisions: General Surgery
  • Cancer Center Programs: Cell Response & Regulation

Academic Office Information

  • 801-587-4633
  • Huntsman Cancer Institute
    2000 Circle of Hope, Room: HCI 3342
    Salt Lake City, UT 84112

Academic Bio

Bryan Welm, PhD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Surgery at the University of Utah, an investigator at the Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI), and a member of the Cell Response and Regulation Program.

Welm investigates the link between breast stem cells and breast cancer. The breast is a highly regenerative organ that undergoes many growth and functional changes during pregnancies. This regenerative capacity has been attributed to a rare stem cell population that can give rise to the many different cell types of the mammary gland. Studies provide evidence that breast stem cells may be the cells that cause breast cancer.

It is poorly understood how the mechanisms that drive changes and growth of stem cells become dysregulated in breast cancer. Welm's main research interest is to understand the cause of breast cancer by identifying the cellular origins for cancer and the initial transforming events within those cells.

Welm joined HCI after completing postdoctoral work in the laboratory of Zena Werb, PhD, at the University of California, San Francisco.

Education History

Type School Degree
Postdoctoral Fellowship University of California, San Francisco
Postdoctoral Fellow
Doctoral Training Baylor College of Medicine
Cell and Molecular Biology
Undergraduate University of California, Santa Cruz
Undergraduate Diablo Valley College

Selected Publications

Journal Article

  1. Basham KJ, Kieffer C, Shelton DN, Leonard CJ, Bhonde VR, Vankayalapati H, Milash B, Bearss DJ, Looper RE, Welm BE (2013). Chemical genetic screen reveals a role for desmosomal adhesion in mammary branching morphogenesis. J Biol Chem, 288(4), 2261-70.
  2. DeRose YS, Gligorich KM, Wang G, Georgelas A, Bowman P, Courdy SJ, Welm AL, Welm BE (2013). Patient-derived models of human breast cancer: protocols for in vitro and in vivo applications in tumor biology and translational medicine. Curr Protoc Pharmacol, Chapter 14, Unit14.23.
  3. Gligorich KM, Vaden RM, Shelton DN, Wang G, Matsen CB, Looper RE, Sigman MS, Welm BE (2013). Development of a screen to identify selective small molecules active against patient-derived metastatic and chemoresistant breast cancer cells. Breast Cancer Res, 15(4), R58.
  4. Liu J, Welm B, Boucher KM, Ebbert MT, Bernard PS (2012). TRIM29 functions as a tumor suppressor in nontumorigenic breast cells and invasive ER+ breast cancer. Am J Pathol, 180(2), 839-47.
  5. Pathak TP, Osiak JG, Vaden RM, Welm BE, Sigman MS (2012). Synthesis and Preliminary Biological Study of Bisindolylmethanes Accessed by an Acid-Catalyzed Hydroarylation of Vinylindoles. Tetrahedron, 68(26), 5203-5208.
  6. Maddox J, Shakya A, South S, Shelton D, Andersen JN, Chidester S, Kang J, Gligorich KM, Jones DA, Spangrude GJ, Welm BE, Tantin D (2012). Transcription factor Oct1 is a somatic and cancer stem cell determinant. PLoS Genet, 8(11), e1003048.
  7. Smith BA, Shelton DN, Kieffer C, Milash B, Usary J, Perou CM, Bernard PS, Welm BE (2012). Targeting the PyMT Oncogene to Diverse Mammary Cell Populations Enhances Tumor Heterogeneity and Generates Rare Breast Cancer Subtypes. Genes Cancer, 3(9-10), 550-63.
  8. Lum DH, Matsen C, Welm AL, Welm BE (2012). Overview of human primary tumorgraft models: comparisons with traditional oncology preclinical models and the clinical relevance and utility of primary tumorgrafts in basic and translational oncology research. Curr Protoc Pharmacol, Chapter 14, Unit 14.22.
  9. DeRose YS, Wang G, Lin YC, Bernard PS, Buys SS, Ebbert MT, Factor R, Matsen C, Milash BA, Nelson E, Neumayer L, Randall RL, Stijleman IJ, Welm BE, Welm AL (2011). Tumor grafts derived from women with breast cancer authentically reflect tumor pathology, growth, metastasis and disease outcomes. Nat Med, 17(11), 1514-20.
  10. Pathak TP, Gligorich KM, Welm BE, Sigman MS (2010). Synthesis and preliminary biological studies of 3-substituted indoles accessed by a palladium-catalyzed enantioselective alkene difunctionalization reaction. J Am Chem Soc, 132(23), 7870-1.
  11. Shelton DN, Fernandez-Gonzalez R, Illa-Bochaca I, Ortiz-de-Solorzano C, Barcellos-Hoff MH, Welm BE (2010). Use of stem cell markers in dissociated mammary populations. Methods Mol Biol, 621, 49-55.


  1. Smith BA, Welm AL, Welm BE (2012). On the shoulders of giants: a historical perspective of unique experimental methods in mammary gland research. [Review]. Semin Cell Dev Biol, 23(5), 583-90.