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PROFESSOR | Cell, Developmental and Regenerative Biology


Biology Our laboratory studies genetic and epigenetic regulation of embryonic stem cell pluripotency and somatic cell reprogramming, using genomic and proteomics approaches. For more information, please visit the Wang Laboratory website. Research Topic Developmental Biology, Epigenetics, Gene Expressions, Gene Regulation, Mass Spectrometry, Protein Complexes, Proteomics, Stem Cells, Transcription Factors, Transcriptional Activation and Repression Multi-Disciplinary Training Area Developmental and Stem Cell Biology [DSCB] Education BS, Nankai University MS, Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences PhD, University of Massachusetts at Amherst Postdoc, Lineberger Comp. Cancer Center, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill Postdoc, Children's Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School Instructor in Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School Awards 2013 The Dr. Harold and Golden Lamport Research Award Mount Sinai School of Medicine 2013 Irma T. Hirschl and Weill-Caulier Trusts Career Scientist Award Hirschl Trust 2007 Cell Development Award Harvard Stem Cell Institute (HSCI) 2000 LRFA Postdoctoral Fellowship Lymphoma Research Foundation of America 1995 University Graduate Fellowship University of Mass. Amherst 1988 University Undergraduate Award Nankai University, Tianjin, China Research Specific Clinical/Research Interest: Genetic and epigenetic regulation of stem cell pluripotency and somatic cell reprogramming Wang Lab Personnel: Current Members Xin Huang, Ph.D. Title: Postdoctoral Fellow Nationality: Chinese Research Interest: Proteomics, Epigenetics Email: Diana Guallar, Ph.D. Title: Postdoctoral Fellow Nationality: Spanish Research Interest: Transcriptional control of stem cell pluripotency Email: Miguel Fidalgo, Ph.D. Title: Postdoctoral Fellow Nationality: Spanish Research Interest: Naive and primed pluripotency and somatic cell reprogramming Email: Francesco Faiola, Ph.D. Title: Postdoctoral Fellow Nationality: Italian Research Interest: Protein-Protein Interaction and Stem Cell Pluripotency Email: Junjun Ding, Ph.D. Title: Postdoctoral Fellow Nationality: China Research Interest: Epigenetic regulation of stem cell pluripotency Email: Arven Saunders, M.S. Title: PhD candidate Nationality: USA Research Interest: Nanog control of pluripotency and reprogramming Former members: Chandra P. Shekar, Ph.D. Title: Postdoctoral Fellow (2009-2010) Nationality: India Research Interest: Novel pluripotency factors for stem cell pluripotency and development Email: Sarah H. Orkin, B.S. (2009-2010) Title: Research Coordinator Nationality: United States Research Interest: Technician and lab manager Summary of Research Studies: Embryonic stem (ES) cells serve as a potentially inexhaustible source for tissue replacement in regenerative medicine due to their capability of unlimited self-renewal and multi-lineage differentiation. Vital cellular functions of ES cells require the coordinated action of a large number of proteins that assemble into an array of multi-protein complexes of distinct composition and structure (protein-protein interactions). In addition, physical interactions between regulatory pluripotency transcription factors and their target genes (protein-DNA interactions) provide insights into differential gene expression dictating the pluripotency program. Analysis of protein complexes encompassing intricate protein-protein and regulatory protein-DNA interactions is key to understanding stem cell pluripotency. Recently, we tested the utility of in vivo biotinylation of transcription factors in mouse ES cells, and have established an in vivo biotinylation system for BirA-mediated specific biotinylation of critical pluripotency factors in mouse ES cells. We developed and optimized an approach for affinity purification of pluripotency protein complexes involving streptavidin capture of biotinylated proteins (dubbed bioSAIP) and demonstrated the feasibility of in vivo biotinylation for mapping global/chromosomal targets of many different transcription factors (dubbed bioChIP-chip). Utilizing the technologies we developed, we have constructed a protein interaction network surrounding the pluripotency factor Nanog in mouse ES cells (Wang et al., Nature 2006) and mapped an extended transcriptional network for pluripotency of mouse ES cells (Kim et al. Cell 2008). The network is highly enriched for factors known to be critical in ES cell biology and appears to function as a module for pluripotency. Pluripotency is maintained by many transcription factors that form a highly interconnected protein interaction network including the two homeobox proteins Nanog and Oct4, and a battery of associated proteins of known and unknown functions linking to multiple co-repressor pathways. Further dissection of the pluripotency network in human ES cells (and induced pluripotent stem cells) and understanding molecular function of the novel factors should illuminate fundamental properties of stem cells and the process of cellular reprogramming, and ultimately lead to precise manipulation and realization of the full clinical therapeutic benefits of these unique cells. Therefore, my lab will be focusing on the following three research areas: 1) Defining protein-protein and protein-DNA interaction networks for pluripotency of human ES cells (and human iPS cells); 2) Dissecting molecular action of novel pluripotency factors on stem cell self-renewal and pluripotency; 3) Elucidating functional significance of novel pluripotency factors in early development and somatic cell reprogramming. For more information, please visit the Wang Laboratory website.


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