Institute of Stroke

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Institute of Stroke

Lei Liu

Lei Liu
Research interests:
My lab is interested in understanding the molecular mechanisms of aging and cell death. In the aging research, we have established a fruit fly genetic model of muscle weakness induced by calcium toxicity. Using this model, we preformed genetic screens to discover new regulatory pathways. In addition, we are interested in drug screens to search for novel treatment strategies against vascular and immune cell aging. Currently, we are focused on the anti-aging effect of terazosin, which is a clinical drug to treat hypertension and prostate hypertrophy. In the cell death research, we have established several fly genetic models of neuronal necrosis and performed genetic and drug screens. Our long-term goal is to discover new principle of cell death, and find ways to delay or prevent the cell death in the nervous system. We are interested in diseases such as brain stroke, traumatic brain injury and Parkinson's disease.     
Country of citizenship: P. R. China

Ph.D. in Molecular Physiology, 2002
University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa

M.A. in Biology (Physiology and Cell Biology), 1996
University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas

M.S. in Agronomy, 1992
Shenyang Agricultural University, Shenyang, China

B.S. in Plant Protection, 1987
Jilin Agricultural Collage, Changchun, China

Professional Experience

Professor                                                                         November 2014 to Now
Beijing Institute for Brain Disorders
Capital Medical University, Beijing

Assistant professor                                                            September 2008 to October 2014
School of Life Sciences
Peking University, Beijing

Research investigator                                                         August 2007 to August 2008
Department of Internal Medicine
University of Iowa, Iowa city, IA 52242

Postdoctoral Research Scholar                                            August 2002 to July 2007
Department of Internal Medicine
University of Iowa, Iowa city, IA 52242

Graduate Research Assistant                                              August 1996 to July 2002
Interdisciplinary Studies in Molecular Physiology (sponsoring department – Neuroscience)
University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242

Graduate Teaching Assistant                                               August 1994 to May 1996                            
Department of Physiology and Cell Biology
University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66044

Graduate Research Assistant                                               August 1992 to May 1994                            
Department of Entomology
University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66044


Member, The Genetics Society of America
Member, The Society for Neuroscience

Honors and Awards

PostDoc Poster Award (2006) on Aging Study at College of Medicine/Collage of Public Health/VA Hospital Research week University of Iowa

PostDoc Poster Award (2005) on Aging Study at College of Medicine/Collage of Public Health/VA Hospital Research week University of Iowa

Graduate Poster Award (2001) at College of Medicine/Collage of Public Health Research week. University of Iowa


1. Lin Hou, Kai Liu, Yuhong Li, Shuang Ma, Xunming Ji* and Lei Liu * (*Corresponding
author) (2016) Necrotic pyknosis is a morphologically and biochemically distinct event from
apoptotic pyknosis. Journal of Cell Science (IF=4.6)  Online doi: 10.1242/jcs.184374

2. Yu Zhang, Rong Cai, Rui Zhou, Yuhong Li* and Lei Liu* (2016). Tousled-like kinase mediates a new type of cell death in Drosophila.  Cell Death and Differentiation (IF=8.2) 23:146-57.

3. Xinping Chen#, Chunyue Zhao#, Xiaolong Li#, Tao Wang#, Yizhou Li, Cheng Cao, Yuehe Ding,  Mengqiu Dong, Lorenzo Finci, Jia-huai Wang*, Xiaoyu Li* and Lei Liu*  (2015) Terazosin activates Pgk1 and Hsp90 to promote stress resistance. Nature Chemical Biology (IF=13.0) 11: 19-25.

4. Kai Liu, Lianggong Ding, Yuhong Li, Hui Yang, Chunyue Zhao, Ye Lei , Shuting Han, Wei Tao, Dengshun Miao, Hermann Steller, Michael Welsh* and Lei Liu* (2014). Neuronal necrosis is regulated by a conserved chromatin-modifying cascade. Proc Natl Acad Sci (IF=9.8) 111: 13960-13965.

5. Yong Yang, Lin Hou, Yuhong Li, Jianquan Ni and Lei Liu* (2013) Neuronal necrosis and spreading death in Drosophila genentic model. Cell Death and Disease (IF=5.2) 4 e723.

Slice presentation at national conferences

1. BIT's 5th Annual World Congress of Molecular & Cell Biology, Nanjing, April 27, 2015
   Title: Terazosin activated Pgk1 and Hsp90 to promote stress resistance

2. The 54th Annual Drosophila Research Conference. Washington DC. April 6, 2013
Title: Necrotic cell death is mediated by a special chromatin-modifying pathway in fly and mammals (presented by my graduate student, Kai Liu)

3. The 52nd Annual Drosophila Research Conference San Diego, CA  April 1, 2011
Title: Apoptosis negatively regulates necrosis in Drosophila (presented by my graduate student, Yong Yang)

4. Cold Spring Harbor Conference on Neurobiology of Drosophila.  Cold Spring Harbor, NY. October 6, 2005
Title: Involving of TRP genes, nanchung and water witch in Drosophila Hygrosensation.  

5. The 44th Annual Drosophila Research Conference.  Chicago.  March 6, 2003.

Title: Identification and function of thermosensory neurons in Drosophila larvae 

601 Basic Science Research Building
Aging and Disease lab of Xuanwu Hospital and Center of Stroke, Beijing Institute for Brain Disorders, Capital Medical University, Youanmen, Beijing, 100069, China

Tel: (10)83950212