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HONGJIE ZHANG
Assistant Professor
Title : Assistant Professor
Faculty Coordinator (Fhs)
Institute: Faculty of Health Sciences
Research Fields: Organ Morphogenesis, C. Elegans, Sphingolipid (SL) Homeostatic Network Regulation, Pathology and Molecular Mechanism
Email: hjzhang@um.edu.mo
Tel: 8822 4518
Office: (Office) E12-3008 / (Lab) N22-2031
Consultation Hours: Tue, Fri 16:30-17:30
Notes: --
HONGJIE ZHANG

Research Contents

The main research interest of our group is focused on the molecular mechanism of organ morphogenesis. Majority of human diseases are originated from internal organs. Understanding the molecular mechanism of organ formation and maintenance is fundamental to developmental biology and medicine. However, currently the process of organ morphogenesis is not possible to be examined in complex organisms in vivo. We use genetically tractable and structurally simple C. elegans as a model system, employing genetic, biochemical and functional genomics approaches to investigate how organs form and how the shape and size of organs are regulated and maintained.We are also interested in in vivo sphingolipid (SL) homeostatic network regulation. SLs are involved in a wide array of cellular processes and are affected in a variety of diseases ranging from diabetes to cancer, from neurodegenerative- to cardiovascular diseases. Yet, little is known about their roles in the development of these diseases and their potential to serve as drugs or treatment targets. We use the C. elegans model, with a simple set of conserved SLs, to delineate the SL homeostatic network and its regulation on the whole organism level and to explore the link between SL metabolites and the pathology of the diseases linked to defects in SL biosynthesis and metabolism.

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