Jian Zuo, Ph.D.

Jian Zuo, Ph.D.

Department of Developmental Neurobiology
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Affiliated Professor
Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
262 Danny Thomas Place
Memphis, TN 38105
Tel: (901) 495-3891
Fax: (901) 495-2270
Email: Jian Zuo


  • Ph.D. Institution: University of California, San Francisco, CA (1993)
  • Postdoctoral: Rockefeller University


Research Interests

The work in Dr. Zuo's laboratory is focused on the identification and characterization of genes important for the development and degeneration of cerebellar Purkinje cells and inner ear hair cells. They are taking two complimentary approaches. The first, positional cloning of mouse mutant genes, takes advantage of recent advances in the mouse genome project. Mouse cerebellar mutants, such as lurcher (Lc), Purkinje cell degeneration (pcd) and nervous (nr), are of particular interest. They have identified and characterized the Lc gene and established genetic and physical maps of pcd and nr loci. As the mutant pcd gene induces Bcl-2 dependent apoptosis, they are searching for downstream genes involved in the degenerative process in pcd mutant mice. The second approach takes advantage of a new technique that allows modification of endogenous genes in bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs) with a green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter gene and further introduction of modified BACS into pronuclei to generate trans-genic mice with labeled neurons in the developing brain. They have chosen to modify three genes that have been shown to be expressed specifically in hair cells of the inner ear: alpha-9 AchR, Brn3.1 and delta-1 GluR. These transgenic mice will provide a resource for the construction of hair cell specific cDNA libraries at different developmental stages, as well as a tool for the introduction of exogenous genes into hair cells in vivo and for making hair cell specific knockout mice.

Representative Publications

  • Liu X, Yamashita T, Chen Q, Belevych N, Mckim DB, Tarr AJ, Coppola V, Nath N, Nemeth DP, Syed ZW, Sheridan JF, Godbout JP, Zuo J, Quan N. Interleukin 1 type 1 receptor restore: a genetic mouse model for studying interleukin 1 receptor-mediated effects in specific cell types. J Neurosci. 2015 Feb 18;35(7):2860-70. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3199-14.2015. PubMed PMID: 25698726; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4331620.
  • Xu H, Robinson GW, Huang J, Lim JY, Zhang H, Bass JK, Broniscer A, Chintagumpala M, Bartels U, Gururangan S, Hassall T, Fisher M, Cohn R, Yamashita T, Teitz T, Zuo J, Onar-Thomas A, Gajjar A, Stewart CF, Yang JJ. Common variants in ACYP2 influence susceptibility to cisplatin-induced hearing loss. Nat Genet. 2015 Mar;47(3):263-6. doi: 10.1038/ng.3217. Epub 2015 Feb 9. PubMed PMID: 25665007; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4358157.
  • Cai Q, Wang B, Coling D, Zuo J, Fang J, Yang S, Vera K, Hu BH. Reduction in noise-induced functional loss of the cochleae in mice with pre-existing cochlear dysfunction due to genetic interference of prestin. PLoS One. 2014 Dec 8;9(12):e113990. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0113990. eCollection 2014. PubMed PMID: 25486270; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4259315.
  • Walters BJ, Liu Z, Crabtree M, Coak E, Cox BC, Zuo J. Auditory hair cell-specific deletion of p27Kip1 in postnatal mice promotes cell-autonomous generation of new hair cells and normal hearing. J Neurosci. 2014 Nov 19;34(47):15751-63. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.3200-14.2014. PubMed PMID: 25411503; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4236404.
  • Mellado Lagarde MM, Wan G, Zhang L, Gigliello AR, McInnis JJ, Zhang Y, Bergles D, Zuo J, Corfas G. Spontaneous regeneration of cochlear supporting cells after neonatal ablation ensures hearing in the adult mouse. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Nov 25;111(47):16919-24. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1408064111. Epub 2014 Nov 10. PubMed PMID: 25385613; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4250150.
  • Cox BC, Dearman JA, Brancheck J, Zindy F, Roussel MF, Zuo J. Generation of Atoh1-rtTA transgenic mice: a tool for inducible gene expression in hair cells of the inner ear. Sci Rep. 2014 Nov 3;4:6885. doi: 10.1038/srep06885. PubMed PMID: 25363458; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4217099.

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