"If you're not failing every now and then, it's a sign you're not doing anything very innovative."     — Woody Allen

ZHOU LAB | Publications

Citations available herepdf versions available here

See Full list @ NCBI Bibliography


  • Optical control of membrane tethering and interorganellar communication at nanoscales.
He L, Jing JZhu L, Tan P, Ma G, Zhang Q, Nguyen NT, Wang J#, Zhou Y# and Huang Y#.

Chemical Science2017,8: 5275-81. (Cover article; PMID: 28959426)

Free Access - Royal Society of ChemistCry

Supporting Information.

Highlighted as Cover Story by Chem Sci @ Royal Society of Chemistry

BioTechniques News: "Building a bridge between membranes"

Vital Record: "Building bridges within the cell -using light"

[email protected]: "New technique uses light to build connections within disrupted cells"


新浪新闻中心: 在光遗传学工具开发中取得进展


ScienceDaily News

Nanowerk News

Phys.Org News

[email protected]

  • Targeted DNA methylation in vivo using an engineered dCas9-MQ1 fusion protein.

Lei Y, Zhang X, Su J, Jeong M, Gundry MC, Huang YH, Zhou Y, Li W and Goodell MA.

Nature Communications. 2017,8:16026 (PMID: 28695892).
Free Access

  • Mutations in 5-methylcytosine oxidase TET2 and RHOA cooperatively disrupt T-cell homeostasis.

Zang S, Li J, Yang H, Zeng H, Han W, Zhang J, Lee M, Moczygemba M, Isgandarova S, Yang Y, Zhou Y, Rao A, You JM, Sun D, Huang Y.

Journal of Clinical Investigation. 2017,127(8):2998-3012. (PMID: 28691982)
  • Engineered split-TET2 enzyme for inducible epigenetic remodeling.
Lee M, Li J, Liang Y, Ma G, Zhang J, He L, Liu Y, Li Q, Li M, Sun D, Zhou Y# and Huang Y#.

Journal of the American Chemical Society. 2017,139(13):4659-62. (PMID: 28294608; lead contact)



Featured in ACS Editors' Choice based on recommendations from over 400 editors of ACS' 44 journals

Highlighted in JACS Spotlights: "Epigenetic changes on demand with an enzyme-small molecule combo"

Vital Record: "Epigenetic changes on demand: turning the 'traffic light' of DNA from red to green"

  • The LINK-A lncRNA interacts with PtdIns(3,4,5)P3 to hyperactivate AKT and confer resistance to AKT inhibitors.
    Lin A*, Hu Q*, Li C*, Xing Z, Ma G, Wang C, Li J, Ye Y, Yao J, Liang K, Wang S, Park PK, Marks JR, Zhou Y, Zhou J, Hung MC, Liang H, Hu Z, Shen H, Hawke DH, Han L, Zhou Y, Lin C^ and Yang L^.

Nature Cell Biology. 2017,19(3):238-51. (PMID: 28218907)


Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol | Research Highlights: "The cancer link(RNA) between PIP3 and AKT"

  • Light-operated Ca2+ entry through engineered CRAC channels.
Ma G, Wen S, Huang Y, and Zhou Y.
In Store-operated Ca2+ entry  (SOCE) pathways, Springer International Publishing
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology. 2017,993:117-38. (PMID: 28900912)

  • New bioluminescent coelenterazine derivatives with various C-6 substitutions.

Jiang T, Yang X, Gao Y, Zhou Y, Yampolsky IV, Du L and Li M.

Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry. 2017,15(33):7008-18. (PMID: 28795755)

  • Integrated pipeline for inferring the evolutionary history of a gene family embedded in the species tree: a case study on the STIMATE gene family.

Song J, Zheng S, Nguyen NT, Wang Y, Zhou Y and Lin K.

BMC Bioinformatics. 2017,18:439. (PMID: 28974198)


SI: Phylogenetic trees for ORAI, STIM, and STIMATE

  • An engineered split-TET2 enzyme for chemical-inducible DNA hydroxymethylation and epigenetic remodeling.

Li MZhou Y#, and Yun Huang#.

Journal of Visualized Experiments. 2017(130), e56858.

  • Discovery of the first environment-sensitive fluorescent probe for GPR120 (FFA4) imaging.

Liu J, Tian C, Jiang T, Gao Y, Zhou Y, Li M and Du L.

ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters. 2017,8(4):428-32. (PMID: 28435531)

  • cybLuc: An Effective Aminoluciferin Derivative for Deep Bioluminescence Imaging.

Wu W, Su J, Tang C, Bai H, Ma Z, Zhang T, Yuan Z, Li Z, Zhou W, Zhang H, Liu Z, Wang Y, Zhou Y, Du L, Gu L, Li M.

Analytical Chemistry. 201,89(9):4808-16. (PMID: 28378575)


  • Molecular determinants for STIM1 activation during store-operated Ca2+ entry.
Ma G, Zheng S, Ke Y, Zhou L, He L, Wang Y, and Zhou Y.

Current Molecular Medicine. 2017,17(1):60-9. (PMID: 28231751).


Highlighted in "Editor's Choice"

News-MEDICAL: "Researchers gain new insights into factors crucial for STIM1 activation"

EurekAlert! AAAS: "Critical molecular determinants for activation of calcium influx into cells revealed"

  • Optogenetic immunomodulation: shedding light on antitumor immunity.
Tan P, He L, Han G, and Zhou Y.

Trends in Biotechnology. 2017,35(3):215-26. (PMID: 27692897)


  • Optogenetic toolkit for precise control of calcium signaling.
Ma G, Wen S, He L, Huang Y, Wang Y, and Zhou Y.

Cell Calcium. 2017,64:36-46 (PMID: 28104276).



  • TET1-mediated Oxidation of 5-formylcytosine (5fC) to 5-carboxycytosine (5caC) in RNA.
Basanta-Sanchez M, Wang R, Liu Z, Ye X, Li M, Shi X, Agris P, Zhou Y, Huang Y, Sheng J.

ChemBioChem. 2017,18(1):72-6.(PMID: 27805801)


  • Optogenetic approaches to control calcium entry in non-excitable cells.
He L, Zhang Q, Zhou Y# and Huang Y#.

Calcium entry channels in non-excitable cells. 2017:145-160. CRC Press.


  • TRIM14 inhibits cGAS degradation mediated by selective autophagy receptor p62 to promote innate immune responses.

Chen M, Meng Q, Qin Y, Liang P, Tan P, He L, Zhou Y, Chen Y, Huang J Wang RF and Cui J. 

Molecular Cell. 2016,64:1-15.


  • Meeting Our Associate Editor. 
Zhou Y.

Current Molecular Medicine. 2016,16(7):1.


  • Illuminating cell signaling with near-infrared light-responsive nanomaterials.
Zhang Y, Huang L, Li Z, Ma G, Zhou Y#, Han G#.

ACS Nano. 2016,10(4):3881-5. (PMID: 27077481; #: corresponding authors)


  • The LINK-A lncRNA activates normoxic HIF1a signlaing in triple-negative breast cancer. 
Liu A, Li C, Xing Z, Hu Q, Liang K, Han L, Wang C, Hawke DH, Wang S, Zhang Y, Wei Y, Ma G, Park PK, Zhou J, Hu Z, Zhou Y, Mark JR, Liang H, Hung MC, Lin C, and Yang L. 

Nature Cell Biology. 2016,18(2):213-24. (PMID: 26751287)


  • Store-operated CRAC channel inhibitors: opportunities and challenges. 
Tian C, Du L, Zhou Y# and Li M#. (#: corresponding authors)

Future Medicinal Chemistry. 2016,8(7):817-32. (PMID: 27149324)


  • Discovery of the first environment-sensitive near-infrared (NIR) fluorogenic ligand for a1-adrnergic receptor  imaging  in vivo. 
Ma, Lin Y, Cheng Y, Wu W, Cai R, Shen S, Shi B, Han B, Shi X, Zhou Y, Du L and Li M.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry. 2016,59(5):2151-62. (PMID: 26821136

  • SKF-96365 activates cytoprotective autophagy to delay apoptosis in colorectal cancer cells through inhibition of the calcium/CaMKIIy/AKT-mediated pathway. 
Jing Z, Sui X, Yao J, Xie J, Jiang L, Zhou Y, Pan H and Han W
Cancer Letters. 2016,372(2):226-38. (PMID: 26803657

  • SOCE and cancer: recent progress and new perspectives.

Xie J, Pan H, Zhou Y# and Han W#. (#: corresponding authors)

International Journal of Cancer. 2016,138(9):2067-77. DOI: 10.1002/ijc29840.


  • Environment-sensitive fluorescent probe for the human Ether-a-go-go-related gene (hERG) potassium channel.
Liu Z, Jiang T, Wang B, Ke B, Zhou Y, Du L and Li M. 
Analytical Chemistry. 2016,88(3):1511-5. (PMID: 26370746)

  • Quenching the firefly luciferase by various ions.
Zhang H, Bai H, Jiang T, Ma Z, Chen Y, Zhou Y, Du L and Li M. 
Photochemical and Photobiological Sciences. 2016,15(2):244-9. (doi10.1039/C5PP00432B)


  • Proteomic mapping of ER-PM junctions identifies STIMATE as a regulator of Ca2+ influx.

Jing J*, He L*, Sun A*, Quintana A*, Ding Y*, Ma G, Tan P, Liang X, Zheng X, Chen L, Shi X, Zhang SL, Zhong L, Huang Y, Dong MQ, Walker CL, Hogan PG, Wang Y, Zhou Y. 

Nature Cell Biology. 2015,17:1339-47. DOI: 10.1038/ncb3234. (PMID: 26322679) *Equal contribution


Supplementary Information.

Reported a novel optogenetic tool for optical control of ER-PM junctions: LiMETER

Related Protocols are available at: Protocol Exchange (2015) doi:10.1038/protex.2015.072

Supplementary Video 1 and 2

Featured as "News & Views" by Nature Cell Biology: "STIMATE reveals a STIM1 transitional state"

  • Near-infrared photoactivatable control of Ca2+ signaling and optogenetic immunomodulation.
He L*, Zhang Y*, Ma G*, Tan P*, Li Z, Zang S, Wu X, Jing J, Fang S, Zhou L, Wang Y, Huang Y, Hogan P, Han G & Zhou Y

eLIFE. 2015,pi:e10024 (*equal contribution; doi: 10.7554/elife.10024; PMID: 26646180)


Media Outlets

ScienceDaily  & Vital Record: "Harness the power of light to fight cancer"

The Battalion: "Researchers develop new cancer treatment

Optics & Photonics News: "Light-activated immune response"

News Medical: "Researchers explore ways to use light to combat cancer"

LabRoots: "Activating dendritic cells by optogenetic immunomodulation technology"

ALN Magazine: "New technique invovling light fights cancer in mice"

Biophotonics: "Optogenetic immunomodulation reduces cancer tumor size, metastasis in animal model"

Immuno-Oncology News: "Researchers using new technology to activate immune response in cancer treatment"

Australia Network News: "Using light to fight cancer"

[email protected]

Innovation Toronto

Texas A&M Today

Novus Light Technologies



  • Inside-out Ca2+ signaling prompted by STIM1 conformational switch.

Ma G*, Wei M*, He L*, Liu C*, Wu B, Zhang SL, Jing J, Liang X, Senes A, Tan P, Li S, Sun A, Bi Y, Zhong L, Si H, Shen Y, Li M, Lee MS, Zhou W, Wang J, Wang Y, Zhou Y.

Nature Communications. 2015,6:7826. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms8826. (PMID: 26184105) *Equal contribution


Supplementary Information available here.

Supplementary Video available at Youtube. 

  • TMEM110 regulates the maintenance and remodelling of mammalian ER-plasma membrane junctions competent for STIM-ORAI signalling. 
Quintana A, Rajanikanth V, Farber-Katz S, Gudlur A, Chen Z, Jing J, Zhou Y, Rao A and Hogan PG. 

PNAS. 2015,112(51):E7083-92. (doi: 10.1073/pnas.1521924112; PMID: 26644574)


[email protected]: "Matchmaker lets calcium flow"

  • Novel Intramolecular Photoinduced Electron Transfer-Based Probe for the Human Ether-a-go-go-Related Gene (hERG) Potassium Channel.

Liu Z, Zhou Y, Du L, and Li M.

Analyst. 2015,140(24):8101-8. (link; PMID: 2652630)


  • Discovery of a series of 2-phenylnaphthalenes as firefly luciferase inhibitors.

Bai H, Chen W, Wu W, Ma Z, Zhang H, Jiang T, Zhang T, Zhou Y, Du L, Shen Y and Li M.

RSC Advances. 2015,5:63450-7 (link

  • Fluorogenic probe for the human Ether-a-Go-Go-related gene potassium channel imaging.

Liu Z, Wang B, Ma Z, Zhou Y, Li M.

Analytical Chemistry. 2015,87(5):2550-4 (PMID: 25665091



  • STIM1 triggers a gating rearrangement at the extracellular mouth of the ORAI1 channel.

Gudlur A*, Quintana A*, Zhou Y, Hirve N, Mahapatra S, Patrick Hogan.

Nature Communications. 2014,5:5164 (PMID: 25296861)


  • Stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1) and Orai1 mediate histamine-evoked calcium entry and nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT) signaling in human umbilical vein endothelial cells.

Zhou MH, Zheng H, Si H, Jin Y, Peng JM, He L, Zhou Y, Munoz-Garay C, Zawieja CD, Kuo L, Peng X, Zhang SL

The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2014,289(42): 29446-56. (PMID: 25190815)



    • Initial activation of STIM1, the regulator of store-operated calcium entry.
    Zhou Y, Srinivasan P, Razavi S, Seymour S, Meraner P, Gudlur A, Stathopulos PB, Ikura M Rao A and Hogan PG.
    Nature Structural & Molecular Biology. 2013,20:973-981. [PMID: 23851458]  

    Highlighted in NSMB "News and Views": conformational dynamics of STIM1 activation

    • STIM-ORAI interactions that control the CRAC channel.

    Gudlur A, Zhou Y, and Hogan PG. 

    Current Topics in Membranes. 2013,71:33-58. [PMID:23890110]


    • Probing Ca2+ binding capability of viral proteins with the EF-hand motif by grafting approach.

    Zhou Y, Xue S, Frey TK and Yang JJ.

    Methods in Molecular Biology. 2013,963:37-53. (PMID: 23296603)

    • Calciomics: integrative studies on Ca2+ binding proteins and their interactomes in biological systems.

    Zhou Y, Xue S, and Yang JJ.

    Metallomics. 2013,5(1):29-42. (PMID: 23235533)


    • ORAI store-operated calcium channel.

    Zhou Y, Rao A and Hogan PG.

    Encyclopedia of Biological Chemistry. Elsevier. 2013:359-366.

    • Calcium and viruses.

    Zhou Y, Xue S, Chen Y, and Yang JJ.

    Encyclopedia of Metalloproteins. Springer. 2013.


    • STIM1 gates the store-operated calcium channel ORAI1 in vitro.

    Zhou Y, Meraner P, Kwon, HT, Machnes D, Oh-hora M, Zimmer J, Huang Y, Stura A, Rao A & Hogan PG.

    Nature Structural & Molecular Biology. 2010,17(1):112-116. (PMID: 20037597)


     Highlighted on the cover of NSMB: “CRACing Ca2+ entry” 

    Rated as “Must Read [F1000 article factor: 8]” on Faculty 1000

    Reported as “Featured News Story” on Immune Disease Institute’s homepage

    Highlighted as “Featured Article” on Nature Signaling Gateway: "Calcium signaling: STIM1 and ORAI1 alone"

    • Pore architecture of the ORAI1 store-operated calcium channel.

    Zhou Y, Ramachandran S, Oh-hora M, Rao A and Hogan PG.

    PNAS. 2010,107(11):4896-901. (PMID: 20194792)


    • Molecular interaction and functional regulation of connexin50 gap junctions by calmodulin.

    Chen Y, Zhou Y, Lin X, Wong HC, Xu Q, Jiang J, Wang S, Lurtz MM, Louis CF, Veenstra RD, Yang JJ.

    Biochemical Journal. 2011. 435(3):711-22. (PMID: 21320072)

    • Calcium-dependent association of calmodulin with the rubella virus nonstructural protease domain.

    Zhou Y, Tzeng WP, Wong HC, Ye Y, Jiang J, Chen Y, Huang Y, Suppiah S, Frey TK, and Yang JJ.

    The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2010,285(12):8855-68. (PMID:20086014)

    • Calmodulin regulates Ca2+-sensing receptor-mediated Ca2+ signaling and its cell surface expression.

    Huang Y*,  Zhou Y*, Wong HC, Castiblanco A, Chen Y, Brown EM, Yang JJ.

    The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2010,285(46):35919-31. (*: Equal contribution; PMID: 20826781)

    • Calciomics: prediction and analysis of EF-hand calcium binding proteins by protein engineering.

    Chen Y, Xue S, Zhou Y and Yang JJ.

    Science China Chemistry. 2010,53(1):52-60. (PMID: 20802784)

    • Site-specific modification of calmodulin Ca²(+) affinity tunes the skeletal muscle ryanodine receptor activation profile.

    Jiang J, Zhou Y, Zou J, Chen Y, Patel P, Yang JJ, Balog EM.

    Biochemical Journal. 2010,432(1):89-99. (PMID: 20815817)

    • Elucidation of a novel extracellular calcium-binding site on metabotropic glutamate receptor 1{alpha} (mGluR1{alpha}) that controls receptor activation.

    Jiang Y, Huang Y, Wong HC,  Zhou Y, Wang X, Yang J, Hall RA, Brown EM and Yang JJ.

    The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2010,285: 33463-74. (PMID: 20705606)

    Prior to 2010

    • A single EF-hand isolated from STIM1 forms dimer in the absence and presence of Ca2+.

    Huang Y,  Zhou Y, Wong, HC, Chen Y, Chen Y, Wang S, Castiblanco A, Liu A and Yang JJ.

    FEBS Journal. 2009,276(19):5589-97. (PMID: 19694801)

    • Viral calciomics: interplays between Ca2+ and virus.

    Zhou Y, Frey TK, Yang JJ.

    Cell Calcium. 2009,46(1):1-17. (PMID: 19535138)


    • Calmodulin mediates the Ca2+-dependent regulation of Cx44 gap junctions.

    Zhou Y, Yang W, Lurtz M, Chen Y, Jiang J, Huang Y, Louis CF, and Yang JJ.

    Biophysical Journal. 2009, 96(7):2832-48. (PMID:19348766)

    • A cysteine-rich metal-binding domain from rubella virus non-structural protein is essential for viral protease activity and virus replication.

    Zhou Y, Tzeng WP, Ye Y, Huang Y, Chen Y, Frey TK, Yang JJ. 

    Biochemical Journal. 2009, 417(2):477-83. (PMID: 18795894)

    • Multiple Ca(2+)-binding sites in the extracellular domain of the Ca(2+)-sensing receptor corresponding to cooperative Ca(2+) response.

    Huang Y, Zhou Y, Castiblanco A, Yang W, Brown EM, Yang JJ.

    Biochemistry. 2009, 48(2):388-98. (PMID: 19102677)

    highlighted on the journal’s home page

    • Rational design of protein-based MRI contrast agents.

    Yang JJ, Yang J, Wei L, Zurkiya O, Yang W, Li S, Zou J, Zhou Y, Maniccia AL, Mao H, Zhao F, Malchow R, Zhao S, Johnson J, Hu X, Krogstad E, Liu ZR.

    Journal of the American Chemical Society. 2008, 130(29):9260-7. (PMID: 18576649)

    • Identification of a Ca2+-binding domain in the rubella virus nonstructural protease.

    Zhou Y, Tzeng WP, Yang W, Zhou Y, Ye Y, Lee HW, Frey TK, Yang J.

    Journal of Virology. 2007, 81(14):7517-28. (PMID: 17475644)

    • Identification of the calmodulin binding domain of connexin 43.

    Zhou Y, Yang W, Lurtz MM, Ye Y, Huang Y, Lee HW, Chen Y, Louis CF, Yang JJ.

    The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2007,282(48):35005-17. (PMID: 17901047)

    • Identification and dissection of Ca(2+)-binding sites in the extracellular domain of Ca(2+)-sensing receptor.

    Huang Y*, Zhou Y*, Yang W, Butters R, Lee HW, Li S, Castiblanco A, Brown EM, Yang JJ. 

    The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2007, 282(26):19000-10. (PMID: 17478419; *: Equal contribution)

    • Functional elements on SIRPalpha IgV domain mediate cell surface binding to CD47.

    Liu Y,  Zhou Y, Lee HW, Yang JJ, Bühring HJ, Chen YT, Ha B, Chen CX, Yang Y, Zen K., Lee HW, Yang JJ.

    Journal of Molecular Biology. 2007;19;365(3):680-93. (PMID: 17070842)

    • Prediction of EF-hand calcium-binding proteins and analysis of bacterial EF-hand proteins.

    Zhou Y, Yang W, Kirberger M, Lee HW, Ayalasomayajula G, Yang JJ.

    Proteins: Structure, Function and Bioinformatics. PMID: 16981205)


    • Research advances of two-dimensional electrophoresis based proteomic application in biological fluids.

    Zhou Y, Zhou W, Zhang Y.

    Chinese Journal of Pharmacology and Toxicology. 2003,17(4):292-97.