Molecular Biology Program
The Xiaolan Zhao Lab
Our lab studies two fundamental aspects of biology that have broad implications for human health. The first research direction examines how cells faithfully duplicate their genomes and repair DNA lesions arising from endogenous and exogenous sources. The second direction focuses on how a protein modifier called SUMO mediates signal transduction, directs the DNA stress response, and dynamically regulates the functions of many proteins. We have implemented a versatile combination of molecular, genetic, biochemical, cell biological, and genomic/proteomic approaches toward answering these questions. Our current work aims to elucidate new underlying principles of the above processes, and reveal how they are integrated with other cellular functions to achieve cell proliferation under various conditions.
Meng X, Wei L, Devbhandari S, Zhang T, Xiang J, Remus D, Zhao X. DNA polymerase ε relies on a unique domain for efficient replisome assembly and strand synthesis. Nat Commun. 2020 May 15;11(1):2437. doi: 10.1038/s41467-020-16095-x. PubMed PMID: 32415104.
Peng XP, Lim S, Li, S, Marjavaara L, Chabes A, Zhao X (2018) Acute Smc5/6 depletion reveals its primary role in rDNA replication by restraining recombination at fork pausing sites PLoS Genet 14: e1007129
Bonner, J.N., Choi ,K., Xue, X., Torres, N.T., Szakal, B., Wei, L., Wan, B., Arter, M., Matos, J., Sung, P., Brown, P.W., Branzei, D. and Zhao, X. (2016) Smc5/6 mediated sumoylation of the Sgs1-Top3-Rmi1 complex promotes removal of recombination intermediates. Cell Reports 16, 368-378.
Xiaolan Zhao, PhD
- Molecular biologist Xiaolan Zhao studies chromosomal organization, genome integrity, DNA replication and repair, dynamic protein modification.
- PhD, Columbia University
- Bressler Scholar, Alfred W. Bressler Scholar Endowment Fund (2007-2010)
- Research Scholar, American Cancer Society (2012-2016)
- Scholar, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (2013-2018)
- Discovery of the extensive SUMO-based DNA damage response
- Discovery of the connection between the nuclear pore complex and desumoylation
- Discovery of the Smc5/6 complex in budding yeast
- Discovery of the essential function of the DNA replication and damage checkpoint
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Doctors and faculty members often work with pharmaceutical, device, biotechnology, and life sciences companies, and other organizations outside of MSK, to find safe and effective cancer treatments, to improve patient care, and to educate the health care community.
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Xiaolan Zhao discloses the following relationships and financial interests:
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