- Undergraduate Education
- B.S. (2004) Physics, Fudan University
- Graduate Education
- Ph.D. (2009) Structural Biology, Baylor College of Medicine
- Postdoc. Structural Biology, Stanford University (2009-13)
- Joined Texas A&M in January 1, 2014
Cryo-EM of Cellular Machineries
The living cell contains a collection of molecular machines to grow and function. These machines include the ribosomes, the chaperons, the proteasomes and other enzymes. Malfunction of these machines, if occurred in human, are related to many diseases. Understanding their three-dimensional (3D) structures is essential to understand how these machines work in the cell and eventually to treat those related diseases.
Here we use an experimental technique called cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) to image these cellular machines in their native environment at liquid nitrogen temperatures. We then use image processing and graphics techniques to visualize their 3D structures, answering the questions such as how they assemble and how they interact with each other.
In addition, we develop computational modeling tools to interpret and animate these obtained 3D structures to further describe their movements and dynamics.
Peng, Z, Simeon, R, Mitchell, SB, Zhang, J, Feng, H, Chen, Z et al.. Designed Ankyrin Repeat Protein (DARPin) Neutralizers of TcdB from Clostridium difficile Ribotype 027. mSphere. 2019;4 (5):.
Wang, B, Zhang, J, Wu, Y. A Multiscale Model for the Self-Assembly of Coat Proteins in Bacteriophage MS2. J Chem Inf Model. 2019;59 (9):3899-3909.
Meng, R, Jiang, M, Cui, Z, Chang, JY, Yang, K, Jakana, J et al.. Structural basis for the adsorption of a single-stranded RNA bacteriophage. Nat Commun. 2019;10 (1):3130.
Simeon, R, Jiang, M, Chamoun-Emanuelli, AM, Yu, H, Zhang, Y, Meng, R et al.. Selection and characterization of ultrahigh potency designed ankyrin repeat protein inhibitors of C. difficile toxin B. PLoS Biol. 2019;17 (6):e3000311.
Brock, DJ, Kustigian, L, Jiang, M, Graham, K, Wang, TY, Erazo-Oliveras, A et al.. Efficient cell delivery mediated by lipid-specific endosomal escape of supercharged branched peptides. Traffic. 2018;19 (6):421-435.
Cui, Z, Gorzelnik, KV, Chang, JY, Langlais, C, Jakana, J, Young, R et al.. Structures of Qβ virions, virus-like particles, and the Qβ-MurA complex reveal internal coat proteins and the mechanism of host lysis. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2017;114 (44):11697-11702.
Yang, K, Chang, JY, Cui, Z, Li, X, Meng, R, Duan, L et al.. Structural insights into species-specific features of the ribosome from the human pathogen Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Nucleic Acids Res. 2017;45 (18):10884-10894.
Weaver, J, Jiang, M, Roth, A, Puchalla, J, Zhang, J, Rye, HS et al.. GroEL actively stimulates folding of the endogenous substrate protein PepQ. Nat Commun. 2017;8 :15934.
Gorzelnik, KV, Cui, Z, Reed, CA, Jakana, J, Young, R, Zhang, J et al.. Asymmetric cryo-EM structure of the canonical Allolevivirus Qβ reveals a single maturation protein and the genomic ssRNA in situ. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2016;113 (41):11519-11524.
Lee, JR, Xie, X, Yang, K, Zhang, J, Lee, SY, Shippen, DE et al.. Dynamic Interactions of Arabidopsis TEN1: Stabilizing Telomeres in Response to Heat Stress. Plant Cell. 2016;28 (9):2212-2224.