Da-Zhi Wang, PhD
|Hospital Title||Principal Investigator|
|Academic Title||Associate Professor|
320 Longwood Avenue
John F. Enders Research Bldg., Room 1261
Focus of Research
Current research in the lab focuses on three major areas:
I. Transcriptional and epigenetic control of mammalian cardiovascular development and function
II. miRNAs in cardiac muscle development and function
III. miRNAs in skeletal muscle development and regeneration
The heart is the "heart" of life. Congenital heart disease represents the most common classes of birth defects in humans. Heart disease is the number one killer on both sides of the age spectrum, resulting in significant mortality and morbidity in children and adults.
Research in our lab aims at understanding the genetic pathways for the formation and function of cardiac, skeletal and vascular smooth muscle cell type. In particular, we are interested in the transcriptional control of mammalian heart growth and differentiation, vascular smooth muscle differentiation as well as cell proliferation and differentiation-related human cardiovascular disorders, such as cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure. In addition, we study the biological function of microRNAs, a novel class of non-coding small RNAs, in stem cell development, function and muscle regeneration. We apply a variety of molecular, cellular, and genetic approaches, including transgenic and knock-out mice, to investigate the in vitro and in vivo functions of myocardin family of transcription factors during mammalian development and disease. The ultimate goal of our research is to delineate the molecular pathways for the development and function of muscle cell types and to use this information to design pharmacologic and genetic therapies for muscle-related human disease.
About Da-Zhi Wang, PhD
Dr. Da-Zhi Wang received his Ph.D. in 1998 from the Department of Biological Sciences of the University of Iowa in the laboratory of Prof. Jim Lin where he studied vertebrate development. Dr. Wang conducted his postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Prof. Eric Olson at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas from 1998 to 2002. As a postdoctoral fellow and instructor, Dr. Wang identified a novel transcription factor, myocardin, and demonstrated that myocardin is essential for cardiovascular development. In 2002, Dr. Da-Zhi Wang was recruited to UNC-CH as an Assistant Professor of the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology and a member of the Carolina Cardiovascular Biology Center (CCBC) to establish his independent research program. He was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 2008 at UNC. Dr. Wang was recruited to the Division of Cardiovascular Research of Children's Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School in July 2009 and relocated his lab from Chapel Hill to Boston.
Thomas E. Callis, Kumar Pandya, Hee Young Seok, Ru-Hang Tang, Mariko Tatsuguchi, Zhan-Peng Huang, Jian-Fu Chen, Zhongliang Deng, Bronwyn Gunn, Janelle Shumate, Monte S. Willis, Craig H. Selzman, Da-Zhi Wang. 2009. MicroRNA-208a is a regulator of cardiac hypertrophy and conduction in mice. J Clin Invest 119:2772–2786.
RL. Neppl and DZ Wang, 2009. Smooth(ing) muscle differentiation with microRNAs. Cell Stem Cell 5:130-2.
Thomas E. Callis and Da-Zhi Wang. 2008. Taking microRNAs to heart. Trends in Molecular Medicine 14: 254-260.
Jian-Fu Chen, Elizabeth P. Murchison, Mauricio Rojas, Ruhang Tang, Mariko Tatsuguchi, Thomas E. Callis, Scott M. Hammond, Gerhard Meissner, Craig Selzman, Michael Schneider, Gregory J. Hannon, Cam Patterson and Da-Zhi Wang. 2008. Targeted Deletion of Dicer in the Heart Leads to Dilated Cardiomyopathy and Heart Failure. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 105: 2111-2116.
Tang RH, Zheng XL, Callis TE, Stansfield WE, He J, Baldwin AS, Wang DZ*, Selzman CH*.2008. Myocardin inhibits cellular proliferation by inhibiting NF-kappaB(p65)-dependent cell cycle progression. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 105: 3362-3367 (*Co-corresponding authors).
Xing W, Zhang TC, Cao D, Wang Z, Antos CL, Li S, Wang Y, Olson EN, Wang DZ. 2006. Myocardin Induces Cardiomyocyte Hypertrophy. Circ Res. 98: 1089-1097. Also see comments in Circ Res. 98, 985-7.
Chen JF, Mandel EM, Thomson JM, Wu Q, Callis TE, Hammond SM, Conlon FL, Wang DZ. 2006. The role of microRNA-1 and microRNA-133 in skeletal muscle proliferation and differentiation. Nat Genet. 38: 228-233. Epub 2005 Dec 25.
Cao, D., Wang, Z., Zhang C., Oh, J., Xing, W., Li, S., Richardson, JA., Wang*, D-Z, and Olson*, EN. 2005. Modulation of smooth muscle gene expression by association of histone acetyltransferases and deacetylases with myocardin. Mol. Cell. Biol. 25, 364- 376. (*Co-corresponding authors).
Wang, D.-Z., Li, S., Hockemeyer, D., Sutherland, L.B., Wang, Z., Schratt, G., Richardson, J.A., Nordheim, A., and Olson, E.N., 2002. Potentiation of serum response factor activity by a family of myocardin-related transcription factors. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 99, 14855-60.
Shin, C. H., Liu, Z.-P., Passier, R., Zhang, C.-L., Wang, D.-Z., Harris, T. M., Yamagishi, H., Richardson, J. A., Childs, G., and Olson, E. N., 2002. Modulation of cardiac growth and development by HOP, an unusual homeodomain protein. Cell 110, 725-735.
- Wang, D.-Z., Chang, P.S., Wang, Z, Sutherland, L., Small, E., Krieg, P.A. and Olson, E.N., 2001. Activation of cardiac gene expression by Myocardin, a transcriptional cofactor for serum response factor. Cell 105, 851-862. Comments about this paper may be found in Science 293, 175 (2001); Mol Cell 8, 1-2 (2001).