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Jau-Nian Chen
Phone: (310) 206-4513
Office: 450C Biomedical Sciences Research Building
Lab: 454 Biomedical Sciences Research Building

Research Interests

The cardiovascular system is the first functioning organ during development. Abnormalities in the formation and/or function of the heart and vessels often lead to embryonic lethality or cause severe health issues in the adult. Our laboratory uses a multidisciplinary approach and the zebrafish model to understand the genetic, molecular and cellular basis of the cardiovascular system during normal development and in diseases.

Several unique features make zebrafish ideal for genetic and embryological studies. For instance, the transparent nature of zebrafish embryos provides easy access to observe and study organ development in live embryos. From classic and chemical genetic screens, we have identified mutations and compounds that affect proper patterning or function of the heart and vessels in the zebrafish. We are now using these mutants and compounds as points of entry to study questions about (1) molecular hierarchies important for the formation and cardiac progenitor cells; (2) molecular and cellular mechanisms for cardiac chamber maturation; (3) molecular and physiological mechanisms by which rhythmic cardiac contraction is maintained and by which cardiac arrhythmia occurs.

Selected Publications

Berchtold MW, Kulej K, Zacharias T, Wang K, Torggler RF, Lorentzen L, Jespersen T, Chen JN, Larsen MR and La Cour JM, "The Arrhythmogenic Calmodulin Mutation D129G Dysregulates Cell Growth, Calmodulin-dependent Kinase II Activity and Cardiac Function in Zebrafish", J. Biol Chem 291: 26636-26646 (2016).

Lu F, Langenbacher AD and Chen JN, "Transcriptional Regulation of Heart Development in Zebrafish", J. Cardiovasc Dev Dis 3 (14): (2016).

Gao C, Ren S, Lee J-H, Qiu J, Chapski D, Rau C, Zhou Y, Abdellatif M, Nakano A, Vondriska T, Xiao X, Fu X-D, Chen JN and Wang Y, "RBFox1 Mediated RNA Splicing Regulates Cardiac Hypertrophy and Heart Failure", J. Clin. Invest 126: 195-206 (2015).

Cavanaugh A, Huang J and Chen JN, "Two developmentally distinct populations of neural crest cells contribute to the zebrafish heart", Developmental Biology 404: 103-112 (2015).

Shimizu H*, Schredelseker J*, Huang J*, Lu K*, Naghdi S, Lu F, Franklin S, Fiji HDG, Wang K, Zhu H, Cheng T, Lin B, Nakano H, Nakai J, Stieg AZ, Gimzewski JK, Nakano A, Goldhaber JI,Vondriska TM, Hajnóczky G, Kwon O and Chen JN, "Activation of VDAC2 modulates mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake and cardiac rhythmicity", eLife 4: (2015).

Lin C, Yao E, Wang K, Nozawa Y, Shimizu H, Johnson J, Chen JN, Krogan N, Chuang PT., "Regulation of Sufu activity by p66b and mycbp provides new insights into vertebrate hedgehog signaling", Genes and Development 28: 2547-2563 (2014).

Li R, Beebe T, Jen N, Yu F, Takabe W, Harrison M, Cao H, Lee J, Yang H, Han P, Wang K, Shimizu H, Chen JN, Line CL, Chi NC, Hsiai TK, "Shear stress-activated Wnt-angiopoietin-2 signaling recapitulated vascular repair in zebrafish embryos", Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 34: 2268-2275 (2014).

Zhang Y, Shimizu H, Siu KL, Mahajan A, Chen JN and Cai H, "NADPH oxidase 4 induces cardiac arrhythmic phenotype in zebrafish", J. Biol Chem 289: 23200-23208 (2014).

Schredelseker J, Paz A, Lopez CJ, Altenbach C, Leung CS, Drexler MK, Chen JN, Hubbell WL, Abramson J., "High resolution structure and double electron-electron resonance of the zebrafish voltage-dependent anion channel 2 reveal an oligomeric population", J Biol Chem 289: 12566-12577 (2014).

Monte E, Mouillesseaux K, Chen H, Kimball T, Ren S, Wang Y, Chen JN, Vondriska TM, Franklin S., "Systems proteomics of cardiac chromatin identifies nucleolin as a regulator of growth and cellular plasticity in cardiomyocytes", Am J Physiology 305: 1624-1638 (2013).

Foster WH, Langenbacher A, Gao C, Chen JN, Wang Y., "Nuclear phosphatase PPM1G in cellular survival and neural development", Developmental Dynamics 242: 1101-1109 (2013).

Van Handel B, Montel-Hagen A, Sasidharan R, Nakano H, Ferrari R, Boogerd CJ, Shredelseker J, Wang Y, Hunter S, Org T, Zhou J, Li X, Pellegrini M, Chen JN, Orkin SH, Kurdistani SK, Evans SM, Nakano A and Mikkola HKA, "Latent cardiogenic potential in prospective hemogenic endothelium and endocardium revealed in the absence of Scl/Tal1", Cell 150: 590-605 (2012).

Langenbacher A, Huang J, Chen Y and Chen JN, "Sodium pump activity in the yolk syncytial layer regulates zebrafish heart tube morphogenesis", Developmental Biology 362: 263-270 (2012).

Mouillesseaux K and Chen JN, "Mutation in utp15 Disrupts Vascular Patterning in a p53-Dependent Manner in Zebrafish Embryos", PLoS One 6: (2012).

Choi J, Mouillesseaux K, Wang Z, Fiji HDG, Kinderman SS, Otto FW, Geisler R, Kwon O and Chen JN, "Aplexon targets the HMG-CoA reductase pathway and preferentially regulates angiogenesis from venous endotheial cells", Development 138: 1173-1181 (2010).