Start main content

Academic Staff

Professor HUANG, Jiandong 黃建東

Professor HUANG, Jiandong 黃建東

  • BS (Fudan U); PhD (U of California, LA)
  • Chair Professor of Synthetic Biology
  • L & T Charitable Foundation Professor in Biomedical Sciences
L3-72, Laboratory Block, 21 Sassoon Road, Hong Kong
+852 3917 6810 (Office); +852 3917 9479 (Lab)
+852 2855 1254
  • Investigate the roles of intracellular transportation in development, cellular function and diseases
  • Use synthetic biology approach to investigate biological pattern/structure formation, to develop vaccines against infectious diseases, and to create novel cancer treatment

Prof. Huang earned his BS degree from Fudan University, Shanghai and went to the US through the CUSBEA program to pursue his PhD study in transcriptional regulation during fruit fly embryonic pattern formation. He earned his PhD degree from the University of California, Los Angeles. Thereafter, Prof. Huang received his postdoctoral training in mouse genetics at National Cancer Institute, NIH in the USA. During this period, Prof. Huang was the first to report that the two major intracellular transportation systems of mammalian cells, the microtubule- and actin-filament-based system directly interact with each other through their motor proteins, kinesin and myosin. He established his own laboratory at the University of Hong Kong. Prof. Huang is now an endowed professor in the School of Biomedical Sciences, the University of Hong Kong.

(Please also see the Huang Lab website.)

Intracellular Transportation: My major research interest is in the mechanism of intracellular transportation and its roles in development, cellular functions and diseases. Within the cell, a variety of cellular components are moved to specific sites at specific times. The intracellular transportation processes are essential not only for housekeeping purpose but also for specialized cellular functions, such as the transport of synaptic vesicles. Intracellular transportation is carried out over two major cellular networks, the microtubule and actin networks. Micro-tubule motors include the kinesin and dynein families of proteins while actin motors are the myosin family of proteins. Current research suggests that the micro-tubule network is used for transport over long distances while the actin network is used for short-range delivery in animal cells. Disruption of these processes result in genetic diseases. For example, mutation in myosin-VA results in human Griscelli disease characterized by pigment dilution, immunodeficiency, neurological defect and cognitive disorder. Mutations in other motor molecules result in many other diseases such as heart diseases and deafness.

My previous work demonstrated that myosin-VA can interact directly with the ubiquitously expressed kinesin, implying that the two transportation systems are at least partially coordinated through their motor molecules. The major interest of my group is to use transgenic and knockout mice to study the functions of kinesins in chondrocytes, neurons, and other cell types. Another area of interest in the lab is to investigate the molecular and structural basis of cargo-binding by kinesins.

Synthetic Biology: Synthetic Biology refers to the design and fabrication of biological components and systems that do not already exist in the natural world; and the re-design and fabrication of existing biological systems for useful purpose. My laboratory is aiming to design and fabricate artificial biological parts, devices and circuits to control biological pattern formation, to attack cancer cells, and to prevent infectious diseases.

(For a full list of publications, please see the Huang Lab website.)

  1. Agnese I. Curatolo, Nan Zhou, Yongfeng Zhao, Chenli Liu, Adrian Daerr, Julien Tailleur and Jian-Dong Huang (2020) Cooperative pattern formation in multi-species bacterial colonies. Nature Physics (article) (Published 24 August 2020)
  2. Bao-zhong Zhang, Hin Chu, Shuo Han, Huiping Shuai, Jian Deng, Ye-fan Hu, Hua-rui Gong, Andrew Chak-Yiu Lee, Zijiao Zou, Thomas Yau, Wutian Wu, Ivan Fan-Ngai Hung, Jasper Fuk-Woo Chan, Kwok-Yung Yuen, Jian-Dong Huang (Published online: 04 August 2020) SARS-CoV-2 productively infects human brain organoids. Cell Research
  3. Bao-zhong Zhang, Ye-fan Hu, Lin-lei Chen, Thomas Yau, Yi-gang Tong, Jing-chu Hu, Jian-piao Cai, Kwok-Hung Chan, Ying Dou, Jian Deng, Xiao-lei Wang, Ivan Fan-Ngai Hung, Kelvin Kai-Wang To, Kwok-yung Yuen, and Jian-Dong Huang (Published online: July 1, 2020) Mining of Epitopes on Spike Protein of SARS-CoV-2 from COVID-19 Patients. Cell Research
  4. Meriem Belabed, François-Xavier Mauvais, Sophia Maschalidi, Mathieu Kurowska, Nicolas Goudin, Jian-Dong Huang, Alain Fischer, Geneviève de Saint Basile, Peter Van Endert, Fernando E. Sepulveda and Gaël Ménasché, (Published: 14 April 2020) Kinesin-1 is required for antigen cross-presentation by inducing the scission of tubulations from early endosomes in dendritic cells. Nature Communications V11, Article number 1817.
  5. Raozhou Lin, Zhigang Duan, Haitao Sun, Man-Lung Fung, Hansen Chen, Jing Wang, Chi-Fai Lau, Di Yang, Yu Liu, Yanxiang Ni, Zai Wang, Ju Cui, Wutian Wu, Wing-Ho Yung, Ying-Shing Chan, Amy C.Y. Lo, Jun Xia, Jiangang Shen, and Jian-Dong Huang (Available online February 18, 2019, March 29, 2019) Kinesin-1 Regulates Extrasynaptic Targeting of NMDARs and Neuronal Vulnerability Toward Excitotoxicity, iSciences v13, pp82-97. DOI: 10.1016/j.isci.2019.02.009
  6. Yan-Xiang Ni, Nan Zhou, Wen-Qian Xue, Li Rong, Wing-Ho Yung, Rao-Zhou Lin, Richard Yi-Tsun Kao, Zhi-Gang Duan, Hai-Tao Sun, Hua-Rui Gong, Xu-Ming Tang1, Wen Zhang, Shuang Qi, Sookja Chung, You-Qiang Song and Jian-Dong Huang (2018, published online December 25, 2018) A new role of anterograde motor Kif5b in facilitating large clathrin-coated vesicle mediated endocytosis via regulating clathrin uncoating. Cell Discovery Volume 4, Article number: 65. DOI: 10.1038/s41421-018-0067-5 (
  7. Baozhong Zhang, JianPiao Cai, Bin Yu, Lifeng Xiong, Qiubin Lin, SongYue Zheng, Richard Yi-Tsun Kao, Konghung SZE, Kwok-Yung Yuen, and Jian-Dong Huang (July 15, 2017, Published online June 13, 2017) Immunotherapy Targeting Adenosine Synthase A Decreases Severity of Staphylococcus aureus Infection in Mouse Model. Journal of Infectious Diseases V216, p245-253 [Abstract] DOI: 10.1093/infdis/jix290
  8. Lei Shi, Bin Yu, Chunhui Cai, Wei Huang, Bo-Jian Zheng, David K. Smith, Kwok-Yung Yuen, Jian-Dong Huang (Jan., 2016, published online: December 10, 2015) Combined prokaryotic-eukaryotic delivery and expression of therapeutic factors through a primed autocatalytic positive-feedback loop. Journal of Controlled Release V222 pp. 130–140 DOI: 10.1016/j.jconrel.2015.12.005
  9. Baozhong Zhang, YanHong Hua, Bin Yu, Candy ChoiYi Lau, JianPiao Cai, SongYue Zheng, WingCheong Yam, Richard Yi-Tsun Kao, Konghung Sze, Bo-Jian Zheng, Kwok-Yung Yuen and Jian-Dong Huang (January 2015. Epub ahead of print 2014 Nov 3.) Recombinant ESAT-6-like proteins provoke protective immune responses against invasive Staphylococcus aureus disease in a murine model. Infection and Immunity V83(1):339-345
  10. Ye Jin, Jianting Wu, Yannan Li, Zhiming Cai and Jian-Dong Huang (2013 published on September 1, 2013, Epub ahead of print July 9, 2013) Modification of the RpoS network with an artificial small RNA. Nucleic Acids Research, V41(17):8332-8340
  11. Zai Wang, Ju Cui, Jing Wang, Xin-Mei Zhang, Wai Man Wong, Neal G. Copeland, Nancy A. Jenkins, Julian A. Tanner, Kathryn S E Cheah, Wu-Tian Wu and Jian-Dong Huang (February 1, 2013) Kinesin-1 controls the localization of myofibrils components for their assembly and linkage to the myotendinous junctions. Development V140(3), P617-626
  12. Chenli Liu, Xiongfei Fu, Lizhong Liu, Xiaojing Ren, Carlos K.L. Chau, Sihong Li, Lu Xiang, Hualing Zeng, Guanhua Chen, Lei-Han Tang, Peter Lenz, Xiaodong Cui, Wei Huang, Terence Hwa, Jian-Dong Huang (2011) Sequential establishment of stripe patterns in an expanding cell population. Science V334(6053), P238-241
  13. Ju Cui, Zai Wang, Qianni Cheng, Raozhou Lin, Xin-Mei Zhang, Po Sing Leung, Neal G. Copeland, Nancy A. Jenkins, Kwok-Ming Yao, and Jian-Dong Huang (2011) Targeted Inactivation of Kinesin-1 in Pancreatic β-Cells in vivo Leads to Insulin Secretory Deficiency. Diabetes V60(1), P320-330
  14. Richard Y Kao, Dan Yang, Lai-Shan Lau, Wayne H W Tsui, Lihong Hu, Jun Dai, Mei-Po Chan, Che-Man Chan, Pui Wang, Bo-Jian Zheng, Jian Sun, Jian-Dong Huang, Jason Madar, Guanhua Chen, Honglin Chen, Yi Guan & Kwok-Yung Yuen (2010) Identification of influenza A nucleoprotein as an antiviral target. Nature Biotechnology V28, P600–605
  15. Yang, N., Tanner, J.A., Watt, R.M., Jin, L., Zheng, B.J., He, M.L., Lu, L.Y., Lin, Y.P., Wong, K.L., Lin, M.C., Kung, H.F., Sun, H.Z.*, and Huang, J.D.* (2007). Bismuth Complexes as Inhibitors of the SARS Coronavirus, Angewandte Chemie-International Edition, V46:6464-6468 (* co-corresponding author)
  16. Liu, B., Wang, J., Chan, K. M., Tjia, W. M., Deng, W., Guan, X., Huang, J. D., Li, K. M., Chau, P. Y., Chen, D. J., Pei, D., Pendas, A. M., Cadinanos, J., Lopez-Otin, C., Tse, H. F., Hutchison, C., Chen, J., Cao, Y., Cheah, K. S.,Tryggvason K,Zhou Z (2005).Genomic instability in laminopathy-based premature aging. Nature Medicine 11 (7), 780-785
  17. Huang, J.D., Brady, S.T., Richards, B.W., Stenoien, D., Resau, J.H., Copeland, N.G., and Jenkins, N.A. (1999). Direct interaction of microtubule-and actin-based transport motors. Nature, V397: 267-270

Prof. Huang is a recipient of the Outstanding Graduate Award for Universities in Shanghai, Fellow of the China and United States Biochemistry Examination and Application (CUSBEA) Program, the HKU Outstanding Young Researcher Award 2005-2006, the HKU Outstanding Research Student Supervisor Award 2011-2012, and the HKU Outstanding Researcher Award 2014-2015.

Last updated: 2020-09-17