Prof. Zhang obtained his B.S and Ph.D degrees in Developmental Genetics from Fudan University Shanghai. His graduate works with Professor Min Han uncovered the long-sought linkers between the nucleus and centrosome during radial neuronal cell migration in neocortex, and showed that the Sun-KASH complex is required for cortical layer formation. He worked with Professor Christopher A. Walsh at Harvard and Boston Children’s Hospital as a postdoc fellow and showed that cell type-specific alternative RNA splicing is required for human brain development. Dr. Zhang started as an assistant professor in the Department of Human Genetics and the Grossman Institute in Jan 2018. His current research focuses on the roles of RNA metabolism in neocortex development and neurological disorders.




CaiQi-resizedCAI QI, PhD
Dr. Qi obtained his PhD from Peking University in 2014 working on epigenetic regulation of dendritic arborization. Before joining the Zhang lab, Cai has been working on synapse formation/axon regeneration and evolutionary cortical development. At UChicago, Cai is interested in understanding molecular mechanisms underlying neuronal cell type specification and connectivity.






XiangbinRuan-resizedXIANGBIN (Cham) RUAN, MD PhD
Dr. Ruan graduated from Wuhan University in 2010 with a B.A. in clinical medicine. He obtained his PhD from Peking Union Medical College in Prof. Boqin Qiang’s lab, and he was co-mentored by Prof. Weimin Zhong (Yale). His PhD thesis investigated the roles of microRNAs in cortical layer formation, and their cross-talk with Wnt signaling. Xiangbin is interested in developing new approaches to study RNA dynamics and diversity in the brain.







XinranFeng-resizedXINRAN (Sherry) FENG
Rotation student, Human Genetics. Xinran earned bachelor’s degree in Biological Sciences from Fudan University Shanghai. Xinran is particularly interested in genetics of neurological disorders.





Irena is an undergraduate working towards a dual degree in biochemistry and chemistry. Before joining the Zhang Lab, Irena studied CRISPR and methods to improve gene editing efficiency, with other internships exploring her interests in alternative DNA repair pathways and genetic and epigenetic regulation of embryonic development. In the Zhang Lab, Irena is studying the involvement of adducin in various aspects of neural development. Irena is support by Liew Family College Research Fund.





Former members:
Zhuoyue Shi, rotation student, Committee Genetics, Genomics, and Systems Biology (2018)
Nate Westneat, Summer Link, The University of Chicago Lab School (2018)
Isadora Kucera, undergraduate at UChicago, DNUFO summer program (2018)
Grazyna Bozek, research assistant (2018)