Professional Education

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Chinese University of Hong Kong (2018)
  • Master of Science, Chinese Academy Of Sciences (2015)

Stanford Advisors

All Publications

  • Comparative Genomics Reveals Insights into the Divergent Evolution of Astigmatic Mites and Household Pest Adaptations. Molecular biology and evolution Xiong, Q., Wan, A. T., Liu, X., Fung, C. S., Xiao, X., Malainual, N., Hou, J., Wang, L., Wang, M., Yang, K. Y., Cui, Y., Leung, E. L., Nong, W., Shin, S. K., Au, S. W., Jeong, K. Y., Chew, F. T., Hui, J. H., Leung, T. F., Tungtrongchitr, A., Zhong, N., Liu, Z., Tsui, S. K. 2022; 39 (5)


    Highly diversified astigmatic mites comprise many medically important human household pests such as house dust mites causing ∼1-2% of all allergic diseases globally; however, their evolutionary origin and diverse lifestyles including reversible parasitism have not been illustrated at the genomic level, which hampers allergy prevention and our exploration of these household pests. Using six high-quality assembled and annotated genomes, this study not only refuted the monophyly of mites and ticks, but also thoroughly explored the divergence of Acariformes and the diversification of astigmatic mites. In monophyletic Acariformes, Prostigmata known as notorious plant pests first evolved, and then rapidly evolving Astigmata diverged from soil oribatid mites. Within astigmatic mites, a wide range of gene families rapidly expanded via tandem gene duplications, including ionotropic glutamate receptors, triacylglycerol lipases, serine proteases and UDP glucuronosyltransferases. Gene diversification after tandem duplications provides many genetic resources for adaptation to sensing environmental signals, digestion, and detoxification in rapidly changing household environments. Many gene decay events only occurred in the skin-burrowing parasitic mite Sarcoptes scabiei. Throughout the evolution of Acariformes, massive horizontal gene transfer events occurred in gene families such as UDP glucuronosyltransferases and several important fungal cell wall lytic enzymes, which enable detoxification and digestive functions and provide perfect drug targets for pest control. This comparative study sheds light on the divergent evolution and quick adaptation to human household environments of astigmatic mites and provides insights into the genetic adaptations and even control of human household pests.

    View details for DOI 10.1093/molbev/msac097

    View details for PubMedID 35535514

  • Single-Cell RNA Sequencing (scRNA-seq) in Cardiac Tissue: Applications and Limitations. Vascular health and risk management Wang, M., Gu, M., Liu, L., Liu, Y., Tian, L. 2021; 17: 641-657


    Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are a group of disorders of the blood vessels and heart, which are considered as the leading causes of death worldwide. The pathology of CVDs could be related to the functional abnormalities of multiple cell types in the heart. Single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) technology is a powerful method for characterizing individual cells and elucidating the molecular mechanisms by providing a high resolution of transcriptomic changes at the single-cell level. Specifically, scRNA-seq has provided novel insights into CVDs by identifying rare cardiac cell types, inferring the trajectory tree, estimating RNA velocity, elucidating the cell-cell communication, and comparing healthy and pathological heart samples. In this review, we summarize the different scRNA-seq platforms and published single-cell datasets in the cardiovascular field, and describe the utilities and limitations of this technology. Lastly, we discuss the future perspective of the application of scRNA-seq technology into cardiovascular research.

    View details for DOI 10.2147/VHRM.S288090

    View details for PubMedID 34629873

  • Endothelial-Myocardial Angiocrine Signaling in Heart Development. Frontiers in cell and developmental biology Kim, H., Wang, M., Paik, D. T. 2021; 9: 697130


    Vascular endothelial cells are a multifunctional cell type with organotypic specificity in their function and structure. In this review, we discuss various subpopulations of endothelial cells in the mammalian heart, which spatiotemporally regulate critical cellular and molecular processes of heart development via unique sets of angiocrine signaling pathways. In particular, elucidation of intercellular communication among the functional cell types in the developing heart has recently been accelerated by the use of single-cell sequencing. Specifically, we overview the heterogeneic nature of cardiac endothelial cells and their contribution to heart tube and chamber formation, myocardial trabeculation and compaction, and endocardial cushion and valve formation via angiocrine pathways.

    View details for DOI 10.3389/fcell.2021.697130

    View details for PubMedID 34277641

  • In silico analysis of proteins and microRNAs related to human African trypanosomiasis in tsetse fly COMPUTATIONAL BIOLOGY AND CHEMISTRY Yang, Z., Wang, M., Zeng, X., Wan, A., Tsui, S. 2020; 88: 107347


    Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT), also known as sleeping sickness, causes millions of deaths worldwide. HAT is primarily transmitted by the vector tsetse fly (Glossina morsitans). Early diagnosis remains a key objective for treating this disease. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are evolutionarily conserved small non-coding RNAs that play key roles in vector-borne diseases. To date, the roles of proteins and miRNAs in HAT disease have not been thoroughly elucidated. In this study, we have re-annotated the function of protein-coding genes and identified several miRNAs based on a series of bioinformatics tools. A batch of 81.1 % of tsetse fly proteins could be determined homology in mosquito genome, suggesting their probable similar mechanisms in vector-borne diseases. A set of 11 novel salivary proteins and 14 midgut proteins were observed in the tsetse fly, which could be applied to the development of vaccine candidates for the control of HAT disease. In addition, 35 novel miRNAs were identified, among which 10 miRNAs were found to be unique in tsetse fly. Pathway analysis of these 10 miRNAs indicated that targets of miR-15a-5p were significantly enriched in the HAT-related neurotrophin signaling pathway. Besides, topological analysis of the miRNA-gene network indicated that miR-619-5p and miR-2490-3p targeted several genes that respond to trypanosome infection, including thioester-containing protein Tep1 and heat shock protein Hsp60a. In conclusion, our work helps to elucidate the function of miRNAs in tsetse fly and establishes a foundation for further investigations into the molecular regulatory mechanisms of HAT disease.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.compbiolchem.2020.107347

    View details for Web of Science ID 000591245400012

    View details for PubMedID 32745971

  • High-quality assembly of Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus genome and transcriptome reveals a wide range of novel allergens JOURNAL OF ALLERGY AND CLINICAL IMMUNOLOGY Liu, X., Yang, K., Wang, M., Kwok, J., Zeng, X., Yang, Z., Xiao, X., Lau, C., Li, Y., Huang, Z., Ba, J., Yim, A., Ouyang, C., Ngai, S., Chan, T., Leung, E., Liu, L., Liu, Z., Tsui, S. 2018; 141 (6): 2268-2271

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jaci.2017.11.038

    View details for Web of Science ID 000434701600031

    View details for PubMedID 29305317