The research in the Yang lab focuses primarily on the
function and sensory regulation of bacterial type IV pili (Tfp) which are
important for at least three related bacterial processes: surface motility,
pathogenesis and biofilm formation. The functions of Tfp in all these three
depends the ability of Tfp to retract and deliberately move and translocate
cells. We are interested in deciphering the mechanisms by which bacteria
direct their Tfp-mediated cell movements and in understanding how the
regulation of Tfp function impacts bacterial pathogenesis, biofilm formation
and motility. M.
xanthus and other piliated bacteria are
used as model organisms in our research. We use a multidisciplinary approach
of genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, genomics, bioinformatics and
computational biology in our lab.
Xu Q., WP Black, EMF Mauriello, DR Zusman and Z. Yang.
Chemotaxis mediated by NarX-FrzCD chimeras and non-adapting repellent responses in Myxococcus xanthus. Molecular Microbiology. In Press, 2007.
Zusman, DR, AE Scott, Z Yang and JR Kirby. Chemosensory
pathways, motility and development in Myxoccocus
xanthus. Nature Reviews Microbiology. In Press. 2007.
Yang, Z., X. Duan, M. Esmaeiliyan and HB Kaplan. Composition,
Structure and Function of the Myxococcus
xanthus Cell Envelope. In Multicellularity
and Differentiation Among the Myxobacteria and Their Neighbors. Heidi B. Kaplan and David
Whitworth, editors. ASM Press. In Press. 2007.
Z, Guo D, Bowden MG, Sun H, Tong L, Li Z, Brown AE, Kaplan HB, Shi W. The Myxococcus
wbgB gene encodes a
glycosyltransferase homologue required for lipopolysaccharide O-antigen
of Microbiology. 174(6): 399-405, Dec 2000