Professor Wen received his Ph.D. in Molecular Cell Biology from the Rockefeller University in 1997 and postdoctoral training with Professor Irving Weissman at Stanford University. He was a Principle Investigator at the Institute of Molecular Agrobiolgy and the Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, Singapore, until 2007. He subsequently moved to Hong Kong and joined the Department of Biochemistry at the Hong Kong University Science and Technology as an Associate Professor. He is currently a Professor of Division of Life Science at the Hong Kong University Science and Technology.
Hematopoiesis or blood cell formation is a sophisticated biological process which occurs in discrete anatomical locations during development and culminates in the adult with the replenishable production of dozens of functionally divergent blood cells. Dysregulation of this process is repeatedly seen in many kinds of human diseases including cancers. Professor Wen’s laboratory utilizes zebrafish, a tiny tropical fish whose blood system shares many similarities to humans, to investigate the development and function of hematopoietic stem cells, microglia and Langerhans cells and how their dysregulations incur diseases.
A combination of photo-inducible lineage tracing, time-lapse imaging and devising genetic strategies will be employed to investigate the origin, migration, fate determination and function of hematopoietic stem cells, microglia and Langerhans cells in the intact developing and adult zebrafish with highest possible cellular resolution. The ultimately goal is to uncover novel cellular and molecular principles that organize the formation, maintenance and function of these hematopoietic cells under physiological and pathological states.
(#Co-first author; *Co-corresponding author)
- Wu ST, Xue RT, Hassan SL, Nguyen TML, Wang TN, Pan HR, Liu QF, Xu J, Zhang WQ, and Wen ZL. (2018) Il34-Csf1r pathway regulates the migration and colonization of microglial precursors. Developmental Cell (In press).
- Tian Y, Xu J, Feng SC, He SC, Zhao SZ, Zhu L, Jin W, Dai YM, Luo LF, Qu JY, and Wen ZL. (2017) The first wave of T lymphopoiesis in zebrafish arises from aorta endothelium independent of hematopoietic stem cells. The Journal of Experimental Medicine 214:3347-3360.
- Yu T, Guo WL, Tian Y, Xu J, Chen JH, Li L, and Wen ZL. (2017) Distinct regulatory networks control the development of macrophages of different origins in zebrafish. Blood 129:509-519.
- Xu J, Wang TN, Wu Y, Jin W, and Wen ZL. (2016) Microglia colonization of developing zebrafish midbrain is promoted by apoptotic neuron and lysophosphatidylcholine. Developmental Cell 38:214-222.
- Xu J, Zhu L, He SC, Wu Y, Jin W, Yu T, Qu JY, and Wen ZL. (2015) Temporal-spatial resolution fate mapping reveals distinct origins for embryonic and adult microglia in zebrafish. Developmental Cell 34:632–641.