Zhang, Xiuren individual record

Our laboratory focuses on systemic analysis of biochemical, molecular and biological functions of AGO family proteins (AGOs-mics) in genetically tractable Arabidopsis and economically important crops (i.e. rice). We'd like to identify the small RNAs, mRNA targets and protein components which associate with these AGOs. We will study protein/RNA and protein/protein interactions in these RISC assembly events. Our goal is to understand how these AGOs are functionally specialized or redundant corresponding to endogenous development cues and external environmental stimuli. Particularly, we'd like to learn how plants reprogram their gene expression through the small RNAs and AGOs to construct a new cellular niche in responses to environmental challenges and biotic stresses.

Another aspect of our research involves host/virus interaction. Plants take advantage of RNA silencing pathways to defend themselves from exogenous nucleic acid invaders (i.e. viruses). As an anti-host defense mechanism, viruses encode suppressors that can block RNA silencing responses. We have recently demonstrated that CMV 2b disables AGO1 cleavage activity to inhibit RNA silencing and to counter host defense. We are now extending our study to suppressors of several other viruses and the molecular mechanisms of their suppression.

selected publications
Academic Articles38
  • Sun, D. i., Li, Y., Ma, Z., Yan, X., Li, N., Shang, B., ... Zhang, X. (2021). The epigenetic factor FVE orchestrates cytoplasmic SGS3-DRB4-DCL4 activities to promote transgene silencing in Arabidopsis. 7(32), eabf3898.
    doi badge
  • Sun, D. i., & Zhang, X. (2021). HASTY moves to chromatin for miRNA production. 14(3), 364-365.
    doi badge pubmed badge
  • Li, Y., Sun, D. i., Ma, Z., Yamaguchi, K., Wang, L., Zhong, S., ... Zhang, X. (2020). Degradation of SERRATE via ubiquitin-independent 20S proteasome to survey RNA metabolism.. Nat Plants. 6(8), 970-982.
    doi badge pubmed badge
  • Nagashima, Y., Ma, Z., Zhang, X., von Schaewen, A., & Koiwa, H. (2020). Lack of endoplasmic reticulum quality control (ERQC) promotes tonoplast (TP) targeting of KORRIGAN 1 (KOR1).. Plant Signal Behav. 15(4), 1744348-1744348.
    doi badge pubmed badge
  • Nagashima, Y., Ma, Z., Liu, X., Qian, X., Zhang, X., von Schaewen, A., & Koiwa, H. (2020). Multiple Quality Control Mechanisms in the ER and TGN Determine Subcellular Dynamics and Salt-Stress Tolerance Function of KORRIGAN1.. Plant Cell. 32(2), 470-485.
    doi badge pubmed badge
in the news
chaired theses and dissertations
First Name
Last Name
mailing address
Texas A&M University; Biochemistry & Biophysics; 2128 TAMU
College Station, TX 77843-2128