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Details of the Faculty or Staff
Ping Zheng
Highest Education 
Kunming Institute of Zoology, the Chinese Academy of Sciences No. 32 Jiaochang Donglu, Kunming, Yunnan, 650223, P.R.China
   +86 871 68125422
Zip Code  
   +86 871 68125422
Research Interest:

1. Preimplantation embryonic development:
We use the mouse as animal model to investigate the developmental biology of mammalian preimplantation embryos. We are interested in the regulatory roles of maternal accumulated factors in controlling early embryonic development. In particular, our previous work demonstrated that Filia, one of the components of subcortical maternal complex, was required for successful pre-implantation development as well as the maintenance of chromosome stability. However, the underlying molecular mechanism remains largely unknown. Our current effort is to define the molecular basis of these phenotypes.
2. Female gametogenesis:
Following primordial germ cell specification and germ cell sex determination, germ cells from males and females undergo distinct molecular changes leading to the formation of the mature gametes. We are investigating the molecular events regulating the development of female germ cells via in vivo and in vitro approaches.

Public Services:

Supported Projects:
1. Germ cell biology
Germ cells are essential for the reproductive competence of all species relying upon sexual reproduction. The journey from the specification of small portion of progenitor cells into mature gametes involves detailed genetic, epigenetic and morphogenetic steps. We focus on the following events of germ cell development:

Primordial germ cell (PGC) specification and maintenance.
PGCs are progenitors of germ cells. We utilize embryonic stem cell differentiation system to identify the molecules implicated in germ cell specification and maintenance and to investigate their roles and functional mechanisms.

Ovarian germline stem cells (GSCs) in primates.
Ovarian GSCs have been isolated in mice. The ovarian GSCs were considered as fundamental machinery for maintenance of female reproductive competence. We hypothesize that this machinery might be conserved among mammalian species. To this end, we are investigating the existence of ovarian GSCs in rhesus monkeys. We also investigate the molecular characteristics of ovarian GSCs, their regenerative activity under the physiological condition, and the molecular events governing ovarian GSC self-renewal and differentiation in both primates and rodents. 
2.  Roles of maternal effect genes in early embryonic development.
 Maternal effect genes play essential roles in early embryonic development. We have described a sub-cortical maternal complex (SCMC) essential for pre-implantation embryonic development. Five components were identified in this complex and the essential roles of each protein were verified via genetic mutation. We use the knock-out mouse lines to investigate the detailed roles of these proteins during oocyte maturation and early embryonic development. Moreover, some of the SCMC components (e.g. Filia, Floped, and Tle6) are specifically expressed in undifferentiated embryonic stem cells (ESCs) as well. We also study the functions of these genes in ESC biology.

3.  Pig transgenesis 
The biotechniques currently utilized to make transgenic pig are costly and inefficient. To improve the efficiency of transgenesis in pig, we work in two ways: 1) Establish a pig donor cell type which allows efficient genetic modification and reprogramming upon nuclear transfer into enucleated recipient oocyte; 2) Isolate and propagate pig spermatogonia stem cells (SSCs) in vitro. SSCs are alternative to make gene modification in species in which pluripotent embryonic stem cells are not available.   

Selected Publication:

1. Guo K, Li CH, Wang XY, He DJ, Zheng P#. Germ stem cells are active in postnatal mouse ovary under physiological conditions. Mol Hum Reprod, 2016, 22(5): 316-328 (该工作受到杂志同期特邀评论 Mol Hum Reprod, 2016, 22(5):313-315).  

2.Lu YQ, He XC, Zheng P#. Decrease in expression of maternal effect gene Mater is associated with maternal ageing in mice. Mol Hum Reprod, 2016, 22(4): 252-260.  

3.Zhao B, Zhang WD, Duan YL, Lu YQ, Cun YX, Li CH, Guo K, Nie WH, Li L, Zhang R, Zheng P#. Filia is an ESC-specific regulator of DNA damage response and safeguards genomic stability. Cell Stem Cell, 2015, 16: 684-698.  

4.Zhang W, Xiao MS, Ji S, Tang J, Xu L, Li X, Li M, Wang HZ, Jiang HY, Zhang DF, Wang J, Zhang S, Xu XF, Yu L, Zheng P, Chen X, Yao YG. Promoter variant rs2301228 on the neural cell adhesion molecule 1 gene confers risk of schizophrenia in Han Chinese. Schizophr Res, 2014, 160(1-3):88-96.  

5.Yu XJ, Yi Z, Gao Z, Qin D, Zhai Y, Chen X, Ou-Yang Y, Wang ZB, Zheng P, Zhu MS, Wang H, Sun QY, Dean J, Li L. The subcortical maternal complex controls symmetric division of mouse zygotes by regulating F-actin dynamics. Nat Commun, 2014, 5:4887.  

6.Tan T, Zhang Y, Ji W#, Zheng P#. miRNA Signature in Mouse Spermatogonial Stem Cells Revealed by High-Throughput Sequencing. Biomed Res Int, 2014, 154251.  

7.Zhao YQ, Ji S, Wang JK, Huang JF#, ZhengP#. mRNA-Seq and microRNA-Seq whole-transcriptome analysis of  rhesus monkey ESC  neural differentiation  revealed the potential regulators of rosette neural stem cells. DNA Research, 2014, 21(5):541-54.  

8. Zhang XO, Yin QF, Wang HB, Zhang Y, Chen T, Zheng P, Lu X, Chen LL, Yang L. Species-specific alternative splicing leads to unique expression of sno-lncRNAs. BMC Genomics, 2014, 15: 287.  

9.Liu H, Zhao B, Chen Y, You D, Liu R, Rong M, Ji W, Zheng P, Lai R. Multiple coagulation factor deficiency protein 2 contains the ability to support stem cell self-renewal. FASEB J, 2013, 27(8):3298-305.  

10.Zheng P#, Baibakov B, Wang XH, Dean J#. PtdIns(3,4,5)P3 is constitutively synthesized and required for spindle translocation during meiosis in mouse oocytes. J Cell Sci, 2013, 126(Pt 3):715-21.  

11.Li L, Zheng P, Dean J. Maternal control of early mouse development. Development, 2010, 137: 859-870.  

12.Zheng P, Dean J. Role of Filia, a Maternal Effect Gene, in Maintaining Euploidy during Cleavage Stage Mouse Embryogenesis. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2009, 106(18):7473-8.  

13.Ohsugi M, Zheng P, Baibakov B, Li L, Dean J. Maternally derived FILIA-MATER complex localizes asymmetrically in cleavage-stage mouse embryos. Development, 2008, 135(2):259-269.  

14.Zheng P, Vassena R, Latham KE. Effects of in vitro oocyte maturation and embryo culture on the expression of glucose transporters, glucose metabolism and insulin signaling genes in rhesus monkey oocytes and preimplantation embryos. Mol Hum Reprod, 2007, 13: 361-371.  

15.Zheng P, Dean J. Oocyte-specific genes affect folliculogenesis, fertilization, and early development (Invited review). Semin Reprod Med, 2007, 25(4):243-251.  

16.Zheng P. Effects of in vitro maturation of monkey oocytes on their developmental capacity (Invited review). Anim Reprod Sci, 2007, 98:56-71.  

17.Zheng P, Vassena R, latham K. Expression and downregulation of WNT signaling pathway genes in rhesus monkey oocytes and embryos. Mol Reprod Dev, 2006, 73: 667-677.  

18.Zheng P, Patel B, McMenamin M, Moran E, Paprocki AM, Kihara M, Schramm RD, Latham KE. Effects of follicle size and oocyte maturation conditions on maternal message RNA regulation and gene expression in rhesus monkey oocytes and embryos. Biol Reprod, 2005, 72:890-897.   

19.Zheng P, Schramm RD, Latham KE. Developmental regulation and in vitro culture effects on expression of DNA repair and cell cycle checkpoint control genes in rhesus monkey oocytes and embryos. Biol Reprod, 2005, 72: 1359-1369.    

20.Zheng P, Patel B, McMenamin M, Reddy, S, Paprocki AM, Schramm RD, Latham KE. The primate embryo gene expression resource:  A novel resource to facilitate rapid analysis of gene expression patterns in non-human primate oocytes and preimplantation stage embryos. Biol Reprod, 2004, 70: 1411-1418.  

21.Zheng P, Patel B, McMenamin M, Paprocki AM, Schramm RD, Nagl N, Wilsker D, Wang G, Moran E, Latham KE. Expression of genes encoding chromatin regulatory factors in developing rhesus monkey oocytes and preimplantation stage embryos: Possible roles in genome activation. Biol Reprod, 2004, 70: 1419-1427.  

22.Si W, Zheng P, Li YH, Dinnyes A, Ji WZ. Effect of Glycerol and Dimethyl Sulfoxide on cyropreservation of rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta) sperm. Am J Primatol, 2004, 62: 301-306.  

23.Zheng P, Si W, Bavister BD, Yang JF, Ding CH, Ji WZ. 17-b Estradiol and progesterone improve in-vitro cytoplasmic maturation of oocytes from unstimulated prepubertal and adult rhesus monkeys. Hum Reprod, 2003, 18(10): 2137-2144.  

24.Zheng P, Bavistser BD, Ji WZ. Amino acid requirements for maturation of rhesus monkey oocytes in culture. Reproduction, 2002; 124, 515-525.   

25.Zheng P, Wang H, Bavister BD, Ji WZ. Maturation of rhesus monkey oocytes in chemically defined culture media and their functional assessmental by IVF and embryo development. Hum Repro,2001, 16(2): 300-305.  

26.Zheng P, Bavister BD, Ji WZ. Energy substrate requirement for in vitro maturation of oocytes from unstimulated adult rhesus monkeys. Mol Reprod Dev, 2001, 58: 348-355.   

27.Zheng P, Si W, Wang H, Zou RJ, Bavister BD, Ji WZ*. Effect of age and breeding season on the developmental capacity of oocytes from unstimulated and FSH-stimulated rhesus monkeys. Biol Reprod, 2001, 64: 1417-1421.  

28.Si W, Zheng P, Tang XH, He XC, Wang H, Bavister BD, Ji WZ. Cryopreservation of rhesus monkey (Macaca mulatta) spermatozoa and their functional assessment by in vitro fertilization. Cryobiology, 2000, 41(3): 232-240.  



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Adress:No.32 Jiaochang Donglu Kunming 650223 Yunnan, China Tel:86-871-5199125