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  Home > VBS Faculty > Zheng Xing

Zheng Xing

 Zheng Xing

email: zxing@umn.edu 

301F Veterinary ScienceBuilding
1971 Commonwealth Avenue
Saint Paul, MN 55108
phone: 612 626 5392




Ph.D., CornellUniversity, Ithaca, New York
Postdoctoral,University of California at Berkeley, Berkeley, California


Research Interests


Regulation of host responses to viruses; host-pathogen interaction and systems biology; emerging zoonotic viruses  

Ongoing projects in Dr. Xing's Laboratory


Research interests in our laboratory are focused on studying the regulation of host responses to viruses, especially those causing emerging infectious diseases in animals and human, and elucidating the mechanism of host-virus interaction and viral pathogenesis. The pathogens studied in our lab include members of orthomyxoviruses and bunyaviruses such as avian and swine influenza viruses and novel bunyaviruses.

Characterization of Novel Mechanisms for Immune Evasion by Bunyaviruses
Severe fever with thrombocytopenia Syndrome (SFTS), an emerging tick-borne infectious disease, is caused by a new bunyavirus (SFTSV), which is similar to the Heartland virus identified in Missouri in 2011. The viruses infect a variety of agricultural and wildlife animals as well as human. Studies in our lab initially showed that SFTSV inhibits host innate immunity and later found that viral nonstructural protein NSs interacts with TBK1, a key kinase for IFN signaling, and sequesters TBK1 together with IKKe and IRF3 into viral inclusion bodies formed by NSs itself, resulting in the suppression of host antiviral IFN induction, a novel mechanism of viral immune evasion, as spotlighted by Journal of Virology and recommended to Faculty of 1000Prime Report for its “special significance”.


Regulation of Host Responses to Avian and Swine Influenza Viruses
We have deciphered the mechanism about the regulation of host proinflammatory and antiviral cytokines in immune cells and differentiated bronchial epithelial cells of avian and human species by MAP kinases and NFkB signaling, which also play a role in the replication of avian influenza viruses in the host. Genomic and cell biology approaches are carried out, together with reverse genetics to generate mutant influenza virus strains, to characterize how viral nonstructural proteins including NS1 and PB1-F2 interact with cellular components essential to signaling pathways in controlling host cytokine induction, apoptosis and viral pathogenesis in animals and human. 

Selected Recent Publications 

Sun Q, Jin C, Zhu LL, Liang MF, Li C, Cardona CJ, Li D, Xing Z*. 2015. Host Responses and Regulation by NFkB signaling in Liver Epithelial Cells Infected with A Novel Bunyavirus. Scientific Reports. In Press.

Shen X, Sun W, Shi Y, Xing Z*, Su X*. 2015. Altered viral replication and cell responses by inserting microRNA recognition element into PB1 in pandemic influenza A virus (H1N1) 2009. Mediators and Inflammation. doi: 10.1155/2015/976575.

Hagag I.T., Mansour S.M.G, Ali A.H., Ismaiel E.M., Salama A.A., Cardona C.J., Collins J., and Xing Z*. 2015. Pathogenicity of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Virus H5N1 in Naturally Infected Poultry in Egypt. PLoS One. In Press

Wu XD, Qi, X., Liang MF, Li C, Cardona, C.J. Li D and Xing Z*. 2014. Roles of Viroplasm-like Structure Formed by NSs in Infection with Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome Virus. FASEB Journal 28(6):2504-16.

Wu XD, Qi X, Qu B, Zhang Z, Liang M, Li C, Cardona CJ, Li D, Xing Z*. 2014. Evasion of antiviral immunity through sequestering TBK1/IKKe/IRF3 into viral inclusion bodies. Journal of Virology 88(6):3067-3076.

  • Selected by Journal of Virology for “Spotlight” to highlight research articles of “significant interest in unveiling a novel mechanism for viral immune evasion”. Spotlight Feature: http://jvi.asm.org/content/88/6/3057
  • Selected to “Faculty of 1000Prime Report”: Recommended as “being of special significance in its field” F1000Prime: http://f1000.com/prime/718206803?subscriptioncode=74f8a773-db47-45b3-a66b-ef438e7b4d45.

Xing Z* and Murtaugh M. 2014. Novel bunyavirus in domestic and captive farmed animals, Minnesota, USA [letter]. Emerging Infectious Diseases. 20(2):337-8.

Shah JD, Baller J, Zhang Y, Silverstein K, Xing Z, Cardona CJ. 2014. Comparison of tissue sample processing methods for harvesting the viral metagenome and a snapshot of the RNA viral community in a turkey gut. Journal of Virological Methods. 209:15-24. doi: 10.1016/j.jviromet.2014.08.011.

Aksenov, AA., Sandrock, CE., Zhao, W, Sankaran, S, Harper, R, Cardona, CJ, Xing Z, Davis, CE. 2014. Cellular Scent of Influenza Virus Infection. ChemBioChem. 15(7):1040-8.

Niu G, Li J, Liang MF, Jiang XL, Jiang M, Yin H, Wang Z, Li C, Zhang QF, Jin C, Wang XJ, Ding SJ, Xing Z, Wang SW, Bi Z, Li D. 2013. Infection of domesticated animals with Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome Virus in Endemic Areas of China. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 19(5):756-63.

Xing Z *, Schefers, J, Schwabenlander, M, Jiao, Y, Liang, MF, Li C, Goyal S, Cardona CJ, Li D, Collins J and Murtaugh MP. 2013. SFTSV-like Bunyavirus in farm and wild life animals in the United States. Emerging Infectious Diseases. 19(9):1487-9.

Mondal S, Xing Z and Cardona, CJ. 2013. A comparison of virulence of influenza A virus isolates from Mallards in experimentally challenged turkeys. Avian Diseases. 57(4):790-6.

Chi Y, Zhu Y, Wen T, Cui L, Ge Y, Jiao YJ, Wu T, Ge A, Ji H, Xu K, Bao CJ, Zhu Z, Qi X, Wu B, Shi ZY, Tang FY, Xing Z, Zhou MH. 2013. Cytokine and chemokine levels in patients infected with the novel H7N9 avian influenza A virus in China. Journal of Infectious Diseases. 208(12):1962-7.

Xing Z*, Schefers J, Schwabenlander M, Jiao Y, Liang M, Qi X, et al. Novel bunyavirus in domestic and captive farmed animals, Minnesota, USA. 2013. Emerging Infectious Diseases 19(9):1487-9. Niu G, Li J, Liang M, Jiang X, Jiang M, Yin H, Wang Z, Li C, Zhang Q, Jin C, Wang X, Ding S, Xing Z, Wang S, Bi Z, Li D. 2013. Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome virus among domesticated animals, China. Emerging Infectious Diseases 19(5):756-63.

Adams S, Xing Z, Li J, Mendoza K, Perez D, Reed K, Cardona C. 2013. The effect of avian influenza virus NS1 allele on virus replication and innate gene expression in avian cells. Molecular Immunology 56(4):358-368.

Chi C, Sun Q, Wang S, Zhang Z, Li X, Cardona CJ, Jin Y, Xing Z*. 2013. Robust antiviral responses to enterovirus 71 infection in human intestinal epithelial cells. Virus Research 176(1-2):53-60.

Qi X, Cui L, Jiao Y, Pan Y, Li X, Zu R, Huo X, Wu B, Tang F, Song Y, Zhou M, Wang H, Cardona CJ, Xing Z. 2013. Antigenic and genetic characterization of a European avian-like H1N1 swine influenza virus from a boy in China in 2011. Archives of Virology 158(1):39-53.

Qu BQ, Qi X, Wu X, Liang M, Li C, Cardona CJ, Xu W, Tang F, Li Z, Wu B, Powell K, Wegner M, Li D, Xing Z*. 2012. Suppression of the interferon and NF-κB responses by severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome virus. Journal of Virology 86(16):8388-401.

Gao W, Sun W, Qu B, Cardona CJ, Powell K, Wegner M, Shi Y, Xing Z*. 2012. Distinct Regulation of Host Responses by ERK and JNK MAP Kinases in Swine Macrophages Infected with Pandemic (H1N1) 2009 Influenza Virus. PLoS One 7(1):e30328. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0030328.

Qu BQ, Li X, Gao W, Sun WQ, Jin Y, Cardona CJ, Xing Z*. 2011. Human intestinal epithelial cells are susceptible to influenza virus subtype H9N2. Virus Research 163(1):151-9.

Li Y, Cao H, Dao N, Luo Z, Yu H, Chen Y, Xing Z, Baumgarth N, Cardona C, Chen X. 2011. High-throughput neuraminidase substrate specificity study of human and avian influenza A viruses. Virology 415(1):12-9.

Xing Z*, Harper R, Anunciacion J, Yang Z, Gao W, Qu B, Guan Y, Cardona CJ. 2011. Host immune and apoptotic responses to avian influenza virus H9N2 in human tracheobronchial epithelial cells. American Journal of Respiratory Cell & Molecular Biology 44(1):24-33.

Xing Z*, Cardona CJ, Anunciacion JD, Adams SA, Dao D. 2010. Roles of the ERK MAP Kinase in the Regulation of Proinflammatory and Apoptotic Responses in Chicken Macrophages Infected with H9N2 Avian Influenza Virus. Journal of General Virology 91(2):343-51.

Xing Z* and Cardona CJ. 2009. Preexisting immunity in human populations to novel influenza A (H1N1) virus. Emerging Infectious Diseases 15(11):1847-9.

Xing Z*, CJ Cardona, S Adams, ZQ. Yang, D Perez and PR Woolcock. 2009. Differential Regulation of Antiviral and Proinflammatory Cytokines and Suppression of Fas-mediated Apoptosis by NS1 of H9N2 Avian Influenza Virus in Chicken Macrophages. Journal of General Virology 90(5): 1109-18.

Xing Z*, CJ Cardona, JL Li, N Dao, T Tran, and J Andrada. 2008. Modulation of Adaptive Immune Responses in Chickens by Low Pathogenicity Avian Influenza Virus H9N2. Journal of General Virology 89(5): 88-99.

Xing Z*, CJ Cardona, P Dao, S Hietala, and W Boyce. 2008. Failure of the Standard Realtime RT-PCR Assay to Detect H7 Subtype Avian Influenza Virus Isolated from Wild Birds. Journal of Clinical Microbiology 46(5):1844-6.

Xing Z., EM Conway, C Kang, and A Winoto. 2004. Essential Role of Survivin, an Inhibitor of Apoptosis Protein (IAP), in T Cell Development, Maturation and Homeostasis. Journal of Experimental Medicine 199(1): 69-80.

Chang D, Xing Z*, Pan Y, Algeciras-Schimnich A, Yaish-Ohad S, Peter, ME, and Yang XL. 2002. (*equal contribution) c-FLIPL is a dual function regulator for caspase-8 activation and CD95-mediated apoptosis. EMBO Journal 21(14):3704-3714.

Xing Z and Schat KA. 2000. Inhibitory effect of nitric oxide and interferon-gamma on the replication of Marek’s disease virus. Journal of Virology 74(8):3605-3612.

Xing Z and Whitton JL. 1993. An Anti-lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus ribozyme expressed in tissue culture cells diminishes viral RNA levels and leads to a reduction in infectious virus yield. Journal of Virology 67(4):1840-1847.

Xing Z and Whitton JL. 1992. Ribozymes which cleave arenavirus RNAs: identification of susceptible target sites, and inhibition by target site secondary structure. Journal of Virology 66:1361-1369.




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