Home CAS Center for Excellence


Members of CAS, CAE
National Outstanding Young Scientists Award
Principal Investigators
Address: 320 Yue Yang Road, Shanghai 200031, P.R. China
Tel: 86-21-54920000
Fax: 86-21-54921011
Email: sibcb@sibs.ac.cn
Website: www.sibcb.ac.cn
Principal Investigators
Ph.D., Professor
Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Yue-yang Road, Shanghai 200031, China.
Email: hcheng@@sibcb.ac.cn

Research Areas
mRNA export, gene expression, HBV, coupling, TREX

Research Interests
In eukaryotes, expression of protein-coding genes is a complex multi-step pathway which begins with transcription and processing of nascent pre-mRNA in the nucleus. These processing steps include 5¨ capping, splicing to remove introns and polyadenylation at the 3¨ end. The mature mRNA is then exported to the cytoplasm to translate into proteins. Each step in gene expression pathway is carried out by a distinct machine. Machines in gene expression pathway are directly coupled to each other through the direct interactions between proteins present in each machine. This extensive coupling may enhance the efficiency and fidelity of gene expression. Our group focuses on understanding the molecular mechanism for RNA export and the coupling between mRNA export to other steps in gene expression pathway.
1. Regulation and function of mRNA export.
    a. The mechanisms for mRNA export factors.
    b. Coupling between mRNA export to other steps in gene expression.
    c. Formation, structure and function of the mRNA export machinery (TREX complex).
2. Mechanism and function of viral RNA export.

Selected Publications

  1. Wang K, Wang LT, Wang JS, Chen SL, Shi M, Cheng H*. Intronless mRNAs transit through nuclear speckles to gain export competence. J Cell Biol. (2018). doi:10.1083/jcb.201801184.
  2. Fan J, Kuai B, Wang K, Wang LT, Wang YM, Wu XD, Chi BK, Li GH, Cheng H*. mRNAs are sorted for export or degradation before passing through nuclear speckles. Nucleic Acids Res. (2018). doi:10.1093/ nar/gky650.
  3. Wang K, Shi M, Cheng H*. Microinjection and fluorescence in situ hybridization assay for studying mRNA export in mammalian cells. Methods Mol Biol. (2017).1648:95-102.
  4. Shi M, Zhang H, Wu XD, He ZS, Wang LT, Yin SY, Tian B, Li GH*, Cheng H*.ALYREF mainly binds to the 5¨ and the 3¨ regions of the mRNA in vivo. Nucleic Acids Res. (2017). 45:9640-9653.
  5. Fan J, Kuai B, Wu GF, Wu XD, Chi BK, Wang LT, Wang K, Shi ZB, Zhang H, Chen S, He ZS, Wang SY, Zhou ZC, Li GH*, Cheng H*.Exosome cofactor hMTR4 competes with export adaptor ALYREF to ensure balanced nuclear RNA pools for degradation and export. EMBO J. (2017).36:2870-2886.
  6. Zhang DL, Chen DF, Cao LR, Li GH*, Cheng H*. The Effect of Codon Mismatch on the Protein Translation System. PLoS One. (2016) 11(2):e0148302. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0148302.
  7. Shi M, Zhang H, Wang LT, Zhu CL, Sheng K, Du YH, Wang K, Anusha Dias, Chen S, Malcolm Whitman, Wang ED, Robin Reed*, Cheng H*. Premature Termination Codons Are Recognized in the Nucleus in A Reading-Frame Dependent Manner. Cell Discovery. (2015) 1, 15001. doi:10.1038.
  8. Chi B, Wang K, Du Y, Gui B, Chang X, Wang L, Fan J, Chen S, Wu X, Li G*, Cheng H*.  Hepatitis B virus post-transcriptional element enhances mRNA export via the cellular mRNA export machinery TREX. Nucleic Acids Res. (2014). 42: 7305-18.
  9. Chi B, Wang Q, Wu G, Tan M, Wang L, Shi M, Chang X, Li G, Cheng H*.  Aly and THO are required for assembly of the human TREX complex and association of TREX components with the spliced mRNA. Nucleic Acids Res. (2013) 41: 1294-1306.
  10. Liu HJ, Wu ZT, Shi XL, Li WJ, Liu C, Wang DK, Ye XY, Liu L, Na J, Cheng H*, Chen LY*. Atypical PKC, regulated by Rho GTPases and Mek/Erk, phosphorylates Ezrin during eight-cell embryocompaction. Dev Biol. (2013) 375: 13-22.
  11. Wu ZT, Yang M, Liu HJ, Guo HC, Wang Y, Cheng H, Chen LY*. Role of nuclear receptor co-activator 3 (Ncoa3) in pluripotency maintenance. J Biol Chem. (2012) 287: 38295-304.
  12. Cheng H, Dufu K, Valencia P and Reed R. mRNA Export. Encyclopedia of Life Sciences (ELS). (2007). doi:10.1002/9780470015902.a0005977. pub2.
  13. Cheng H, Dufu K, Lee, B, Jsu J. Das A and Reed R. Human mRNA export machinery recruited to the 5´ end of mRNA. Cell. (2006) 127: 1389-400.
  14. Reed R, Cheng H. TREX, SR proteins and export of mRNA. Curr Opin Cell Biol. (2005) 17: 269-73. (Review)
  15. Masuda S, Das R, Cheng H, Hurt E, Dorman N, Reed R. Recruitment of the human TREX complex to mRNA during splicing. Genes Dev. (2005) 19:1512-7.
  16. Cheng H, Sugiura R, Wu W, Fujita M, Lu Y, Sio SO, Kawai R, Takegawa K, Shuntoh H, Kuno T. Role of the Rab GTP-Binding Protein Ypt3 in the Fission Yeast Exocytic Pathway, and Its Connection to Calcineurin Function. Mol Biol Cell. (2002) 13: 2963-76.
  17. Lu Y, Sugiura R, Yada T, Cheng H, Sio SO, Shuntoh H, Kuno T. Calcineurin is Implicated in the regulation of the Septation Initiation Network in Fission Yeast. Cover story. Genes Cells. (2002)7:1009-19.

Education Background & Academic Experience
Dr. Hong Cheng graduated from China Medical University in 1998. In 1999, she went to Japan to start her graduate study at Kobe University and got her PhD degree in 2003. Then Dr. Cheng moved to the United States and joined the laboratory of Dr. Robin Reed at Harvard Medical School as a postdoc trainee. In 2008, Dr. Hong Cheng returned to China and joined Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology as a principal investigator.

Research Team


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