Dr. Ying Liu, M.D., PhD.

Dr. Ying Liu, M.D., PhD.

Assistant Professor, Department of Neurosurgery and Center for Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine; Research Scientist, Mischer Neuroscience Institute

Email Address: ying.liu.1@uth.tmc.edu
Phone Number: 713-500-3567
Room Number: SRB 630G


Dr. Liu is a fellowship-trained investigator whose research focuses on the use of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to model central nervous system (CNS) development and diseases. By differentiating and genetically manipulating hESCs and iPSCs, Dr. Liu hopes to dissect the development pathways and corresponding pathogenesis in the neural lineage. Her aim is to identify therapeutic targets for the treatment of CNS injury and neurodegenerative diseases.

Dr. Liu earned her medical degree at Peking University Health Science Center in China, where her primary clinical interest was the molecular diagnosis of leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. She received her PhD in neurobiology and anatomy at the University of Utah, where she investigated the development of glia and glial precursors. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in gene targeting in hESCs at the National institute on Aging of the National Institutes of Health.

Before joining the University of Texas Medical School at Houston and Mischer Neuroscience Institute, she was an assistant project scientist in the Department of Reproductive Medicine at the University of California, San Diego, with a concomitant appointment as a professional scientific collaborator at the Center for Regenerative Medicine in the Department of Chemical Physiology at the Scripps Research Institute. She has also held clinical and research positions at the Peking University First Hospital in China and was senior scientist for primary and stem cell systems at Invitrogen, a division of Life Technologies Corporation.

Dr. Liu’s research has been presented and published widely. She has co-authored articles that have appeared in Stem Cells, Stem Cells and Development, Nature Protocols, Cancer Research, Glia, Neuroscience, the Journal of Neurochemistry, Clinical Neuroscience Research, Developmental Biology, Journal of Cellular Biochemistry, Developmental Dynamics, and Nature Genetics, among other journals. Her long-term goal as an investigator is to elucidate the fundamental mechanisms of neural differentiation with the aim of translating this knowledge into novel therapeutic strategies for neural repair and protection.

Selected publications:

Liu, Y, Virshup, DM, White, RL, and Hsu, LC. (2002). Regulation of BRCA1 phosphorylation by interaction with protein phosphatase 1alpha. Cancer Res 62, 6357-6361.

Liu, Y, Wu, Y, Lee, JC, Xue, H, Pevny, LH, Kaprielian, Z, and Rao, MS. (2002). Oligodendrocyte and astrocyte development in rodents: an in situ and immunohistological analysis during embryonic development. Glia 40, 25-43.

Liu, Y, and Rao, M. (2003). Oligodendrocytes, GRPs and MNOPs. Trends Neurosci 26, 410-412.

Liu, Y, and Rao, MS. (2003). Transdifferentiation--fact or artifact. J Cell Biochem 88, 29-40.

Wu, Y, Liu, Y, Levine, EM, and Rao, MS. (2003). Hes1 but not Hes5 regulates an astrocyte versus oligodendrocyte fate choice in glial restricted precursors. Dev Dyn 226, 675-689.

Han, SS, Liu, Y, Tyler-Polsz, C, Rao, MS, and Fischer, I (2004). Transplantation of glial-restricted precursor cells into the adult spinal cord: survival, glial-specific differentiation, and preferential migration in white matter. Glia 45, 1-16.

Liu, Y, Han, SS, Wu, Y, Tuohy, TM, Xue, H, Cai, J, Back, SA, Sherman, LS, Fischer, I, and Rao, MS. (2004). CD44 expression identifies astrocyte-restricted precursor cells. Dev Biol 276, 31-46.

Liu, Y, and Rao, MS. (2004). Glial progenitors in the CNS and possible lineage relationships among them. Biol Cell 96, 279-290.

Liu, Y, and Rao, MS. (2004). Olig genes are expressed in a heterogeneous population of precursor cells in the developing spinal cord. Glia 45, 67-74.

Back, SA, Tuohy, TM, Chen, H, Wallingford, N, Craig, A, Struve, J, Luo, N L, Banine, F, Liu, Y, Chang, A, Trapp, BD, Bebo, BF, Jr, Rao, MS, and Sherman, LS. (2005). Hyaluronan accumulates in demyelinated lesions and inhibits oligodendrocyte progenitor maturation. Nat Med 11, 966-972.

Maitra, A, Arking, DE, Shivapurkar, N, Ikeda, M, Stastny, V, Kassauei, K, Sui, G, Cutler, DJ, Liu, Y, Brimble, SN, Noaksson, K, Hyllner, J, Schulz, TC, Zeng, X, Freed, WJ, Crook, J, Abraham, S, Colman, A, Sartipy, P, Matsui, S, Carpenter, M, Gazdar, AF, Rao, M, and Chakravarti, A (2005). Genomic alterations in cultured human embryonic stem cells. Nat Genet 37, 1099-1103.

Liu, Y, Shin, S, Zeng, X, Zhan, M, Gonzalez, R, Mueller, FJ, Schwartz, CM, Xue, H, Li, H, Baker, SC, Chudin, E, Barker, DL, McDaniel, TK, Oeser, S., Loring, JF, Mattson, MP, and Rao, MS. (2006). Genome wide profiling of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), their derivatives and embryonal carcinoma cells to develop base profiles of U.S. Federal government approved hESC lines. BMC Dev Biol 6, 20.

Li, H*, Liu, Y*, Shin, S, Sun, Y, Loring, JF, Mattson, MP, Rao, MS, and Zhan, M. (2006). Transcriptome coexpression map of human embryonic stem cells. BMC Genomics 7, 103. (* Equal contribution)

Shin, S, Sun, Y, Liu, Y, Khaner, H, Svant, S, Cai, J, Xu, QX, Davidson, BP, Stice, SL, Smith, AK, Goldman, SA, Reubinoff, BE, Zhan, M, Rao, MS, and Chesnut, JD. (2007). Whole genome analysis of human neural stem cells derived from embryonic stem cells and stem and progenitor cells isolated from fetal tissue. Stem Cells 25, 1298-1306.

Sun, Y, Li, H, Liu, Y, Shin, S, Mattson, MP, Rao, MS, and Zhan, M. (2007). Cross-species transcriptional profiles establish a functional portrait of embryonic stem cells. Genomics 89, 22-35.

Thyagarajan, B, Liu, Y, Shin, S, Lakshmipathy, U, Scheyhing, K, Xue, H, Ellerstrom, C, Strehl, R, Hyllner, J, Rao, MS, and Chesnut, JD. (2008). Creation of engineered human embryonic stem cell lines using phiC31 integrase. Stem Cells 26, 119-126.

Campanelli, JT, Sandrock, RW, Wheatley, W, Xue, H, Zheng, J, Liang, F, Chesnut, JD, Zhan, M, Rao, M. S, and Liu, Y. (2008). Expression profiling of human glial precursors. BMC Dev Biol 8, 102.

Liu, Y, Thyagarajan, B, Lakshmipathy, U, Xue, H, Lieu, P, Fontes, A, MacArthur, CC, Scheyhing, K, Rao, MS, and Chesnut, JD. (2009). Generation of a platform human embryonic stem cell line that allows efficient targeting at a predetermined genomic location. Stem Cells Dev 18, 1459-1472

Xue, H, Wu, S, Papadeas, S, Spusta, S, Swistowska, AM, MacArthur, CC, Mattson, MP, Maragakis, NJ, Capecchi, M, Rao, MS, Zeng, X, and Liu, Y. (2009). A targeted neuroglial reporter line generated by homologous recombination in human embryonic stem cells. Stem Cells, 27, 1836-1846

Liu, Y*, Jiang, P, and Deng, W*. (2011) Olig gene targeting in human pluripotent stem cells for motor neuron and oligodendrocyte differentiation. Nat Prot. 6, 640-655. (*Co-corresponding author)

Liu, Y, Lakshmipathy, U, Ozgenc, A, Thyagarajan, B, Lieu, P, Fontes, A, Xue, H, Scheyhing, K, MacArthur C, Chesnut, JD. (2010) hESC engineering by integrase-mediated chromosomal targeting. Methods Mol Biol. 584:229-68.

Liu, Y, Rao, M. (2011) Gene targeting in human pluripotent stem cells. Methods Mol Biol. 767:355-367.

MacArthur, CC, Xue, H, Van Hoof, D, Lieu, P, Dudas, M, Fontes, A, Swistowski, A, Touboul, T, Seerke, R, Laurent, LC, Loring, JF, German, MS, Zeng X, Rao, MS, Lakshmipathy, U, Chesnut, JD, and Liu, Y. (2012). Chromatin insulator elements block transgene silencing in engineered human embryonic stem cell lines at a defined chromosome 13 locus. Stem Cells Dev. 21: 191-205 [Epub ahead of print 2011 Aug 4]