Research team of Professor Xiu Qin Xu


 Team members:

 Professor: Xiuqin Xu

 Assistant Professor: Jing Liu

 Postdoc: Tao Zhang

 Technician: Longqing Zheng

 Postgraduate students: Yu Lin, Xu Kong, Lei Pan, Ziguan Zhang, Liyan Guo, Mengkai Zhang, Ying Luo, Xi Chen, Wanlu Zhou

 Tel: 0592-2185276


 Research Focus:

 Pluripotent stem cells, including embryonic stem cells (ESC) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) with the ability to differentiate to any cell types in the body provide a unique system to study genes that are involved in the earliest stages of differentiation during embryo development, and hold great potential for cellular therapy. Our lab focuses on the specification of embryonic cell lineages giving rise to the cardiomyocyte differentiation. Genomics, proteomics, bioinformatics, and molecular biology methods are used to identify the key genes and signaling pathways associated with cardiac lineage-specific differentiation. Delineation of the molecular mechanism that drive lineage-specific differentiation of human ESC could provide handles to in vitro manipulate the ESC and derive unlimited amounts of specific cell types for cellular therapy and drug screening.

 Heart development: ESC/iPSC are pluripotent stem cells, yet mechanisms of directed differentiation into cardiomyocytes remain poorly defined. We study cardiac development in mouse embryos and we differentiate mouse and human ESC/iPSC into cardiomyocytes in vitro to define the molecular genetic programs.

 iPSC as in vitro cell system for disease modeling and drug screening: Develop human heart disease models based on iPSC generated from reprogramming of somatic cells obtained from patients with heart diseases. We then use these disease models to discover novel disease mechanisms, develop drug therapies.

 Role of RNA binding protein in stem cell lineage-specific differentiation. Most studies focus on the Rbm24, an RNA binding protein recently identified by our group as a cardiac enriched gene during human embryonic stem cell (ESC) cardiogenesis, and subsequently first characterized its role in heart development in zebrafish model.  We demonstrated Rbm24 as a key splicing regulator that modulates post-transcriptional networks during ESC transition to cardiac differentiation. These investigations utilize a combination of cell culture and genetic models including transgenic and knock out mouse to understand the how an RNA binding protein influences ESC lineage differentiation by splicing-mediated regulating mechanisms, and uncovers potential novel pathways operating to direct differentiation of ESC into cardiomyocytes for envisioned regenerative therapies.

 Recent Publications:

  1.  Zhang, T., Lin, Y., Liu, J., Zhang, Z.G., Fu, W., Guo, L.Y., Pan, L., Kong, X., Zhang, M.K., Lu, Y.H. Zhang, R.H. Qiang, X., Wei, H.L., Xu, X.Q.  Rbm24 regulates alternative splicing switch in Embryonic stem cell cardiac lineage differentiation. Stem cells. 2016. 34:1776–1789. (corresponding author).

  2.  J Liu, L Wang, J Cao, Y Huang, Y Lin, XY Wu, Z Wang, F Zhang, XQ Xu*and G Liu ,Functional investigations on embryonic stem cells labeled with clinically translatable iron oxide nanoparticles,Nanoscale, (2014) 6: 9025-9033 (corresponding author).

  3.  Xiu Qin Xu and William Sun, Perspective From the Heart: The Potential of Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes, J. Cell. Biochem. 114: 39–46, 2013. (corresponding author).

  4.  Xiu Qin Xu, Manasi Nandihalli, Kar Tong Tan, William Sun,“Cardiomyocytes from Human Embryonic Stem Cells” Book Chapter: Encyclopedia of Molecular Cell Biology and Molecular Medicine. 2013,  Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA. DOI: 10.1002/3527600906.mcb.201200007.

  5.  Kar Lai Poon; Kar Tong Tan; Yang Ye Wei; Chee Peng Ng; Alan Colman; Vladimir Korzh; Xiu Qin Xu* RNA-binding protein RBM24 is required for sarcomere assembly and heart contractility. Cardiovascular Research (2012) 94:418-427 (corresponding author).  

  6.  Junfang Zhang, Hailong Cao, Bing Zhang, Hanwei Cao, Xiuqin Xu  Hang Ruan a, Tingting Yi, Li Tan, Rui Qu , Gang Song, Bangmao Wang,  Tianhui Hu, Berberine potently attenuates intestinal polyps growth in ApcMin mice and familial adenomatous polyposis patients through inhibition of Wnt signalling,J. Cell. Mol. Med. Vol 17, No 11, 2013 pp. 1484-1493

  7.  Wang, J., Huang, W., Xu, R., Nie, Y., Cao, X., Meng, J., Xu, X., Hu, S., and Zheng, Z., MicroRNA-24 regulates cardiac fibrosis after myocardial infarction. J Cell Mol Med, 2012. 16(9): p. 2150-60.

  8.  Xiu Qin Xu*,  SY Soo, W Sun, R Zweigerdt. Global Expression Profile of Highly Enriched Cardiomyocytes Derived from Human Embryonic Stem Cells. Stem Cells (2009) 27: 2163-2174 (corresponding author).

  9.  Xiu Qin Xu*, R Graichen, C Mummery, Alan Colman, R Zweigerdt, B. Davidson. Chemically Defined Medium supporting Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells to Cardiomyocytes. Differentiation, (2008)  76: 958-970 (corresponding author).

  10.  Xiu Qin Xu*, R Zweigerdt, A Colman, and W Sun. Highly Enriched Cardiomyocytes from Human Embryonic Stem Cells. Cytotherapy, (2008) 10:376-89 (corresponding author).

  11.  R Graichen, Xiu Qin Xu, SY Soo, SC Tham, C Mummery, A Colman, R Zweigerdt, BP Davidson. Enhanced cardiomyogenesis of human embryonic stem cells by a smallmolecular inhibitor of p38 MAPK.  Differentiation, (2008) 76:357-70.

  12.  KM, Mohankumar*, Xiu Qin Xu*,  LD Miller, ET Liu, PD Gluckman, PE Lobie. HOXA1-stimulated oncogenicity is mediated by selective upregulation of components of the p44/42 MAP kinase pathway in human mammary carcinoma cells.  Oncogene. (2007) 7:3998-4008 (*Equal first author).

  13.  Freund, C., D. Ward-van Oostwaard, J. Monshouwer-Kloots, S. van den Brink, M. van Rooijen, X.Q. Xu, R. Zweigerdt, C. Mummery, and R. Passier, Insulin redirects differentiation from cardiogenic mesoderm and endoderm to neuroectoderm in differentiating human embryonic stem cells. Stem Cells, 2008. 26(3): p. 724-33.

  14.  S Shin, Y Sun, Y Liu,  Xiu Qin Xu, B Davidson, E Reubinoff, S Goldman, Z Ming,  M Rao, J Chestnut, Whole Genome Analysis of Human Neural Stem Cells Derived from Embryonic Stem Cells and Stem and Progenitor Cells Isolated from Fetal Tissue. Stem Cells (2007)25: 1298-1306

  15. X Zhang X Lu, Xiu-Qin Xu, HC  Leung, WH. Wong. Recursive SVM Feature Selection and Sample Classification for Proteomics Mass-Spectrometry and microarray Data.  BMC Bioinformatics (2006) 7:197

  16.  Xiu Qin Xu , BS Emerald, EL Goh, N. Kannan, LD Miller, PD Gluckman, Edison T Liu and P Lobie.  Gene expression profiling to identify oncogenic determinants of autocrine human growth hormone (hGH) in human mammary carcinoma. Journal of Biological Chemistry. (2005) 280: 23987-24003  

  17. CL Wei, P Robson  L. Stanton , SK Lim, Xiu-Qin Xu, Y J Ruan, M Rao.  Bing Lim.  Transcriptome Profiling of Human and Murine ESCs Identifies Divergent Paths Required to Maintain the Stem Cell State. Stem Cells. (2005) 23:166–185

  18. Xiu-Qin Xu,  X Lu, X. Zhang, JS. Liu, WH Wong, A Asperger, S Deininger, CK Leow, HC Leung (2004) Molecular Classification of Liver Cirrhosis in Rat Model by Proteomics and Bioinformatics.  Proteomics (2004) 4: 3235-3245  

  19. Xiu Q. Xu and S. Q. Pan.  Feedback regulation of Agrobacterium catalase gene katA involved in Agrobacterium-plant interaction.  Molecular Microbiology (2001) 42: 645-657  

  20. Xiu. Q. Xu and S. Q. Pan An Agrobacterium catalase is a virulence factor involved in tumorigenesis.  Molecular Microbiology (2000) 35: 407-14


 1. “Direct differentiation of cardiomyocytes from human embryonic stem cells” (2007) WIPO (World International Property Organization) Pub. No.: WO/2007/070964  

 2. “Cardiomyocyte Production” (2007) WIPO (World International Property Organization)   Pub. No.: WO/2007/030870

 3.利用小分子化合物诱导干细胞向心肌分化的方法(2016),国内授权号:ZL 2014 1 0629278.5