Chunhua Zhang

Chunhua Zhang Profile Picture

Assistant Professor Department of Botany and Plant Pathology
Ph.D., Purdue University, Plant Biology, 2009

Contact Info:

Training Group(s):
Plant Biology
Chemical Biology

Active Mentor - currently hosting PULSe students for laboratory rotations and recruiting PULSe students into the laboratory; serves on preliminary exam committees

Current Research Interests:

Endomembrane trafficking is essential for plant growth and development and is involved in multiple aspects of plants' interaction with the environment. We are interested in understanding the mechanisms of macromolecule transport between different organelles and the temporal and spatial regulation of the trafficking process. We use high-throughput chemical library screening to identify compounds that target specific trafficking process and then use conditional genetic screening to identify novel cellular components that are involved in the same process. It allows us to observe and document direct and instant cellular response upon trafficking machinery interruption by short-term compound treatment combined with live cell imaging. Mutations in genes that are involved in trafficking process may show altered response to compound in compare with the wild-type plants. Due to the conservation of trafficking machinery between different organisms, our research topic provides opportunities in collaboration with plant pathologists in understanding plant-microbe interaction and biomedical researchers in studying human disease control.

Selected Publications:

Zhang C, Brown MQ, van de Ven W, Zhang ZM, Wu B, Young MC, Synek L, Borchardt D, Harrison R, Pan S, Luo N, Huang YM, Ghang YJ, Ung N, Li R, Isley J, Morikis D, Song J, Guo W, Hooley RJ, Chang CA, Yang Z, Zarsky V, Muday GK, Hicks GR, Raikhel NV (2015) Endosidin2 Targets Conserved EXO70 to Inhibit Exocytosis. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 2015 Nov 25. pii: 201521248 .

Zhang, C.; Hicks, G.R.; Raikhel, N.V. Molecular Composition of Plant Vacuoles: Important but Less Understood Regulations and Roles of Tonoplast Lipids. Plants 2015, 4, 320-333.

Zhang C, Hicks GR, Raikhel NV. Plant Vacuole Morphology and Vacuolar Trafficking. Front. Plant Sci. 5:476. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00476

Zhang C, Hicks GR, Raikhel NV. Chemical biology in plants: Finding new connections between pathways using the small molecule Sortin1. Concepts and Case Studies in Chemical Biology (Chapter 19). Published 2014 by Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA. Pages 285-294.

Zhang C, Mallery EL, Szymanski DB. ARP2/3 localization in Arabidopsis leaf pavement cells: a diversity of intracellular pools and cytoskeletal interactions. Front Plant Sci.. 2013 Jul 12;4:238. PMID: 23874346.

Zhang C, Mallery E, Reagan S, Boko VP, Kotchoni SO, Szymanski DB. The Endoplasmic Reticulum is a Reservoir for WAVE/SCAR Regulatory Complex Signaling in the Arabidopsis Leaf. Plant Physiology. 2013 Jun; 162(2):689-706. PMID: 23613272.

Zhang C, Raikhel NV, Hicks GR. CLASPing Microtubules and Auxin Transport. Dev Cell. 2013 Mar 25;24(6):569-71. PMID: 23537629

Zhang C, Halsey L, Szymanski DB. The development and geometry of shape change in Arabidopsis cotyledon pavement cells. BMC Plant Biology. 2011 Feb 1;11(1):27. PMID: 21284861

Zhang C, Kotchoni SO, Samuels L, Szymanski DB. SPIKE1 signals originate from and assemble specialized domains of the endoplasmic reticulum. Current Biology. 2010 December; 20: 2144-2149. PMID: 21109438

Zhang C, Mallery EL, Schlueter J, Huang S, Fan Y, Brankle S, Staiger CJ, Szymanski DB. Arabidopsis SCARs function interchangeably to meet actin-related protein 2/3 activation thresholds during morphogenesis. Plant Cell. 2008 Apr;20(4):995-1011. PMID: 18424615

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