Jian Zhu, Ph.D.

Jian Zhu, Ph.D.

Contact Information

University of Rochester Medical Center
School of Medicine and Dentistry
601 Elmwood Ave, Box 672
Rochester, NY 14642

Office: (585) 275-6916
Lab: (585) 275-0013
Administrative: (585) 275-3402
Fax: (585) 473- x9573

Research Bio

Virus and host are equivalent opponents and have been playing a dynamic and "never-ending" match for a long time. Virus highly depends on host cellular machineries to replicate, while host cells develop multi-layered antiviral mechanisms to control or prevent viral invasion. Short-term acute or long-term chronic viral infection might yield different yet complicated consequences in host cells. Our lab studies the host-virus interactions, particularly for HIV and herpesviruses, by using recently developed, "state-of-the-art", multidisciplinary systematic approaches. We work at the interface of virology, immunology, cellular and molecular biology, proteomics, and functional genomics.

The goal is to not only pinpoint key genes that play a role in viral replication or mediate the consequences of viral infection for further dissection of their mechanistic functions using classic cell and/or animal models, but also construct a global landscape of gene network modulating viral infection from the massive data generated by integrative multiple systematic approaches at a higher resolution with the aid of powerful bioinformatic analyses. Currently, one of our major directions is to identify key host factors that regulate viral latency and reactivation for HIV and herpesviruses, by combining the genome-wide RNA interference (RNAi) screening together with various modern proteomic approaches including our recently developed PLATO (ParalleL Analysis of Translated ORFs) synthetic display method. Meanwhile, we're also interested in improving current systematic approaches or developing new ones to facilitate the study of host-virus interactions at various (genetic, biochemical and serological) levels, as well as to improve such study in a more quantitative, dynamic, and in vivo condition. Continuing to improve systematic approaches will increase their reliability and accuracy for better applications reaching a greater scope and depth of current host-virus studies. With more advanced systematic tools we will be led towards a complete understanding of viral pathogenesis, antiviral defense mechanisms, and their consequences in critical diseases such as autoimmunity and cancer.

Awards & Honors (National)

National Research Service Award (NRSA) F32 | NIH/NIAID | F32 Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship Award 2012 - 2013

Awards & Honors (Local)

The 18th Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) | Young Investigator Award | Boston, Massachusetts, United States 2011
Predoctoral Fellowship Award | American Heart Association | Dallas, Texas, United States 2007 - 2009
Undergraduate Thesis Presentation Award | Peking University | Beijing, P.R. China 2000
Annual University Fellowship Award for Excellent Undergraduates | Peking University | Beijing, P.R. China 1997 - 2000
Bronze Medal of National Championship of Applied Physics | Wuxi | Jiangsu, P.R. China 1993

Recent Journal Articles

Showing the 5 most recent journal articles. 11 available »

2013 Apr
Zhu J, Larman HB, Gao G, Somwar R, Zhang Z, Laserson U, Ciccia A, Pavlova N, Church G, Zhang W, Kesari S, Elledge SJ. "Protein interaction discovery using parallel analysis of translated ORFs (PLATO)." Nature biotechnology. 2013 Apr; 31(4):331-4. Epub 2013 Mar 17.
2012 Oct 25
Zhu J, Gaiha GD, John SP, Pertel T, Chin CR, Gao G, Qu H, Walker BD, Elledge SJ, Brass AL. "Reactivation of latent HIV-1 by inhibition of BRD4." Cell reports. 2012 Oct 25; 2(4):807-16. Epub 2012 Oct 04.
2012 May
Shamay M, Liu J, Li R, Liao G, Shen L, Greenway M, Hu S, Zhu J, Xie Z, Ambinder RF, Qian J, Zhu H, Hayward SD. "A protein array screen for Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus LANA interactors links LANA to TIP60, PP2A activity, and telomere shortening." Journal of virology. 2012 May; 86(9):5179-91. Epub 2012 Feb 29.
Woodard C, Shamay M, Liao G, Zhu J, Ng AN, Li R, Newman R, Rho HS, Hu J, Wan J, Qian J, Zhu H, Hayward SD. "Phosphorylation of the chromatin binding domain of KSHV LANA." PLoS pathogens. 2012 8(10):e1002972. Epub 2012 Oct 18.
2011 Oct 20
Li R, Zhu J, Xie Z, Liao G, Liu J, Chen MR, Hu S, Woodard C, Lin J, Taverna SD, Desai P, Ambinder RF, Hayward GS, Qian J, Zhu H, Hayward SD. "Conserved herpesvirus kinases target the DNA damage response pathway and TIP60 histone acetyltransferase to promote virus replication." Cell host & microbe. 2011 Oct 20; 10(4):390-400.

Current Appointments

Assistant Professor - Department of Microbiology and Immunology (SMD) - Primary
Assistant Professor - Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics (SMD)


PhD | Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences | The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine2009
MS | Pharmaceutical Sciences | University of Nebraska Medical Center2004
BS (summa cum laude) | Pharmacology | Health Science Center, Peking University2000

Post-Doctoral Training & Residency

Postdoctoral Research Fellow Laboratory of Dr. Stephen Elledge (mentor) Division of Genetics Brigham and Women's Hospital Harvard Medical School Boston, Massachusetts, United States 2013