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Xiaoping Zhong, MD, PhD

Professor of Pediatrics
Professor of Immunology
Member of the Duke Cancer Institute
Campus mail: Box 2644 Med Ctr, Div. Pediatric Allergy & Immunology, Durham, NC 27710
Phone: (919) 681-9450
Email address: xiaoping.zhong@duke.edu

The immune system protects the host from microbial infection but can cause diseases if not properly controlled. My lab is interested in the receptor signaling mediated regulation of immune cell development and function as well as the pathogenesis and treatment of autoimmune diseases and allergies.

We are currently investigating the roles diacylglycerol kinases (DGKs) and TSC1/2-mTOR play in the immune system. DGKs are a family of ten enzymes that catalyze the conversion of diacylglycerol (DAG) to phosphatidic acid (PA), Both DAG and PA are important second messengers involved signaling from numerous receptors. While we expect DGKs to perform important roles in development and cellular function by modulating DAG and PA levels, the physiologic functions of DGKs have been poorly understood. Using cell line models and genetically manipulated mice, we have demonstrated that DGKα and ζ isoforms play critical roles in: T cell development, activation, and anergy by regulating T cell receptor signaling; FcεRI signaling and mast cell function; and Toll-like receptor signaling and innate immune responses.

Research areas that we are actively pursuing include:
1. The mechanisms that control T cell maturation, activation
and self-tolerance.
2. NKT cell development and function.
3. Thymic epithelial cells and thymic development, function, and involution.
4. Regulation of Toll-like receptor signaling and innate immunity. 
5. The pathogenesis and treatment of autoimmune hepatitis. 
6. Mast cell development and function.
7. The pathogenesis and immunotherapy for peanut allergy.

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., Duke University, 1997
  • M.D., First Medical College in Guangzhou (China), 1985

Publications

Zhou, Xinying, Lijie Zhang, Linmiao Lie, Zelin Zhang, Bo Zhu, Jiahui Yang, Yuchi Gao, et al. “MxA suppresses TAK1-IKKα/β-NF-κB mediated inflammatory cytokine production to facilitate Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection.” J Infect 81, no. 2 (August 2020): 231–41. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jinf.2020.05.030.

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Pan, Yun, Wenhai Deng, Jinhai Xie, Shimeng Zhang, Edwin C. K. Wan, Lei Li, Huishan Tao, et al. “Graded diacylglycerol kinases α and ζ activities ensure mucosal-associated invariant T-cell development in mice.” Eur J Immunol 50, no. 2 (February 2020): 192–204. https://doi.org/10.1002/eji.201948289.

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Chen, Pengcheng, Shang Wang, Kyathanahalli S. Janardhan, Rachel L. Zemans, Wenhai Deng, Peer Karmaus, Shudan Shen, et al. “Efficient CD4Cre-Mediated Conditional KRas Expression in Alveolar Macrophages and Alveolar Epithelial Cells Causes Fatal Hyperproliferative Pneumonitis.” J Immunol 203, no. 5 (September 1, 2019): 1208–17. https://doi.org/10.4049/jimmunol.1900566.

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Fu, Yuling, Xiaoxia Zhan, Yichong Wang, Xiaobing Jiang, Min Liu, Yalong Yang, Yulan Huang, et al. “NLRC3 expression in dendritic cells attenuates CD4+ T cell response and autoimmunity.” Embo J 38, no. 16 (August 15, 2019): e101397. https://doi.org/10.15252/embj.2018101397.

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Xie, Jinhai, Yun Pan, Huishan Tao, Peng Wang, Yongping Chen, Jimin Gao, and Xiao-Ping Zhong. “Deficiency of Mucosal-Associated Invariant T Cells in TCRJα18 Germline Knockout Mice.” Immunohorizons 3, no. 6 (June 11, 2019): 203–7. https://doi.org/10.4049/immunohorizons.1900035.

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Chen, Pengcheng, Wenhai Deng, Dandan Li, Tai Zeng, Ling Huang, Qun Wang, Jinli Wang, et al. “Circulating Mucosal-Associated Invariant T Cells in a Large Cohort of Healthy Chinese Individuals From Newborn to Elderly.” Front Immunol 10 (2019): 260. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2019.00260.

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Yang, Jialong, Hong-Xia Wang, Jinhai Xie, Lei Li, Jinli Wang, Edwin C. K. Wan, and Xiao-Ping Zhong. “DGK α and ζ Activities Control TH1 and TH17 Cell Differentiation.” Front Immunol 10 (2019): 3048. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2019.03048.

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Tao, Huishan, Lei Li, Ying Gao, Zehua Wang, and Xiao-Ping Zhong. “Differential Control of iNKT Cell Effector Lineage Differentiation by the Forkhead Box Protein O1 (Foxo1) Transcription Factor.” Front Immunol 10 (2019): 2710. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2019.02710.

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Wang, Hong-Xia, Wenrong Pan, Lei Zheng, Xiao-Ping Zhong, Liang Tan, Zhanfeng Liang, Jing He, Pingfeng Feng, Yong Zhao, and Yu-Rong Qiu. “Thymic Epithelial Cells Contribute to Thymopoiesis and T Cell Development.” Front Immunol 10 (2019): 3099. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2019.03099.

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Hu, Shengfeng, Xialin Du, Yulan Huang, Yuling Fu, Yalong Yang, Xiaoxia Zhan, Wenting He, et al. “NLRC3 negatively regulates CD4+ T cells and impacts protective immunity during Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection.” Plos Pathog 14, no. 8 (August 2018): e1007266. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1007266.

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