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Zemin Zhou, Ph.D.

Languages spoken: English, Chinese

Academic Information

Departments: Pathology - Research Assistant Professor

Divisions: Microbiology and Immunology

Academic Office Information

(801) 213-0966

Emma Eccles Jones Medical Research Building

15 N Medical Dr E, Room: 1124
Salt Lake City, UT

Research Interests

  • Antigen Processing and Presentation
  • Autoreactive T Cell Development
  • Diabetes Mellitus
  • Autoimmune Diseases
  • Tumor Immunology
  • Redox Biochemistry
  • Novel Techniques in Immunology

Research Statement

Our laboratory broadly focuses on the molecular mechanism and regulation of antigen processing and presentation that involved in autoimmunity and infectious diseases. A major interest is the molecular mechanism of processing disulfide bond bearing antigens. GILT (gamma-interferon inducible lysosomal thiol-reductase) is a unique enzyme functioning in unfolding disulfide bond at acidic pH in MHC class II antigen processing and presentation pathway. We utilize various techniques, including site-specific mutagenesis, CRISPR knock-out library screening, single-particle cryo-EM, mouse models, to characterize the molecular and structural mechanism of GILT, and identify novel regulators that modulate its activity. GILT biological function in different diseases, such as malaria infection, diet induced obesity, multiple sclerosis, is also characterized with mouse models.

We also interest in mechanisms involved in quality control of epitope presentation in adaptive immunity and immunological tolerance. HLA-DM plays critical role in MHC class II pathway by catalyzing peptide loading and exchange (DM editing), determining the repertoire of peptides presented to CD4+ T cells. We are particularly interested in studying the biochemical mechanism of DM editing and the role of DM for its sensitivity on editing of peptides bound to MHC class II molecules that associated with autoimmune diseases, such as type 1 diabetes.

Education History

Internship ARUP Laboratories
Clinical Immunology
Doctoral Training University of Utah
Microbiology and Immunology
Postdoctoral Fellowship University of Utah
Postdoctoral Fellow
Doctoral Training Huazhong Agricultural University
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Undergraduate Huazhong Agricultural University

Global Impact