Zhaoyu Xue, Ph.D.

Zhaoyu Xue, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral fellow, Wen Laboratory


Dr. Zhaoyu Xue earned his B.S. in biology from Shandong University and his Ph.D. in molecular and developmental biology from Tsinghua University. His graduate work focused on CRISPR/Cas9 mediated genome editing and functional research of histone modifications in Drosophila. Along with his other research, he is familiar with fly genetics, immunohistochemistry and microscopy. In 2018, he joined the laboratory of Dr. Xiaobing Shi at Van Andel Institute as a postdoctoral fellow. In 2020, he transferred to Dr. Hong Wen’s laboratory.


Current research focus

Post-translational modifications (PTMS) on histones are important for regulating chromatin-associated processes. Histone PTMs are recognized by different kinds of protein domains, including simple “readers” of PTMs. Therefore, identification of novel reader proteins is critical for understanding the function of histone modifications. Another project focuses on histone reader ENL mutations in Wilms tumor. ENL mutations drive aberrant developmental programs and impair nephron differentiation. Using mouse models, Dr. Xue investigates if ENL mutations could drive tumor formation in the kidneys. He seeks to answer the questions: What is the function of ENL mutations in kidney development and what is the underlying mechanism?

Education & Training

Ph.D. in molecular and developmental biology, Tsinghua University (Advisor: Dr. Guanjun Gao)
Thesis: Development of Drosophila Cas9 system and its application in probing the function of histone

B.S. in biology, Shandong University

Awards & External Funding

National Postgraduate Scholarships (Tsinghua University) (2014)

Entrance Scholarship (Tsinghua University) (2012)

National Encouragement Scholarships for Under-Graduate Students (Shandong University) (2011)

National Encouragement Scholarships for Under-Graduate Students (Shandong University) (2009)


To view a list of selected publications click below.

Read More

Zhang, W#, Zhang, X#, Xue, Z#, Li, Y#, Ma, Q, Ren, X, … Ren, M. 2019. Probing the function of metazoan histones with a systematic library of H3 and H4 mutantsDevelop Cell 48(3), 406-419.
# Equal contribution

Hu L, Xu J, Yin MX, Zhang L, Lu Y, Wu W, Xue Z, Ho MS, Gao G, Zhao Y, et al. 2016. Ack promotes tissue growth via phosphorylation and suppression of the Hippo pathway component Expanded. Cell Discov 2: 15047.

Wen K, Yang L, Xiong T, Di C, Ma D Wu M, Xue Z, Zhang X, Long L, Zhang W, et al. 2016. Critical roles of long noncoding RNAs in Drosophila spermatogenesis. Genome Res 26: 1233-1244.F1000

Xue, Z, Wu, M, Wen, K, Ren, M, Long, L, Zhang, X, and Gao, G. 2014. CRISPR/Cas9 mediates efficient conditional mutagenesis in Drosophila. G3-Genes Genom Gene 4:2167-2173.

Xue, Z, Ren, M, Wu, M, Dai, J, Rong, YS, Gao G. 2014. Efficient gene knock-out and knock-in with transgenic Cas9 in Drosophila. G3-Genes Genom Gene 4:925-929.