Xi Yang photo

Xi Yang

Assistant Professor

What I do

My lab uses a combination of molecular biology, cell biology, genetics, and biochemistry approaches to lysosome dynamics and its molecular regulation, with a long-term goal of exploring new treatment strategies for neurodegeneration, cancer, and lysosome storage diseases.

Professional Biography

2007 B.S., Biology- Shanghai Jiao Tong University- China
2014 Ph.D., Genetics- Chinese Academy of Sciences-China
2014-2017 Postdoctoral research associate, Chinese Academy of Sciences
2017-2023 Postdoctoral research associate, University of Michigan
Since 2023.9 Assistant Professor at DU

Research

The lysosome is a central catabolic station that breaks down and recycles cellular materials to maintain nutrient homeostasis. It also plays a vital role in nutrient sensing and intracellular signaling through the mTORC1 complex. Inborn lysosomal genetic defects in human cells will cause lysosomal storage diseases (LSDs). Lysosome dysfunction is also linked to age-related neurodegeneration such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. Furthermore, cancer cells frequently up-regulate their lysosomal catabolic activity to fuel uncontrolled growth, making the lysosome a promising therapeutical target.
Despite its importance, very little is known about how lysosome biogenesis and composition are dynamically regulated according to environmental cues. My lab uses a combination of molecular biology, cell biology, genetics, and biochemistry approaches to lysosome dynamics and its molecular regulation, with a long-term goal of exploring new treatment strategies for neurodegeneration, cancer, and lysosome storage diseases.