Na Yang


National Excellent Young Scientist

Hundred Young Academic Leader of Nankai University

Dr. Na Yang received her Bachelor’s degree in Biophysics from Peking University in 2000 and her PhD degree from Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) in 2005. She performed postdoctoral training at Peking University from 2006 to 2008, and joined the faculty of Institute of Biophysics at the end of 2008, first as an Associate Investigator, and subsequently as an Investigator in 2013 and Professor of the University of CAS in 2015. In early 2017, Dr. Yang became Professor of Pharmacology at Nankai University and State Key Laboratory of Medicinal Chemical Biology.

Dr. Yang has been carrying out studies of structural basis of epigenetics, including histone modifications and nucleosome assembly, as well as RNA-protein interactions in mRNA localization. She has published 32 research articles in prestigious scientific journals such as Science, NSMB, PNAS, Genes & Dev., JBC, etc. The main research interest of Dr. Yang’s group is on drug target validation of epigenetic factors closely related to human diseases, such as malignant tumor. The lab principally uses structure-based approaches, by solving the three-dimensional structures of these epigenetic factors, to reveal the relationship between their structures and functions. Followed by virtual screening and rational drug design based on these structures. Finally candidate compounds will be evaluated and optimized by iterative Structure-Activity Relationship (SAR) analyses.

Selected Publications:

1. Fu, W. Q., Liu, N., Qiao, Q., Wang, M., Min, J. R., Zhu, B.*, Xu, R. M.* and Yang, N.* (2016) Structural Basis for Substrate Preference of SMYD3, A SET Domain-containing Protein Lysine Methyltransferase. Journal of Biological Chemistry, Vol. 291, 9173-9180.

2. Fang, D., Gan, H., Lee, J. H., Han, J., Wang, Z., Riester, S. M., Jin, L., Chen, J., Zhou, H., Wang, J., Zhang, H., Yang, N., Bradley, E. W., Ho, T. H., Rubin, B. P., Bridge, J. A., Thibodeau, S. N., Ordog, T., Chen, Y., van Wijnen, A. J., Oliveira, A. M., Xu, R. M., Westendorf, J. J. and Zhang, Z.* (2016) The histone H3.3K36M mutation reprograms the epigenome of chondroblastomas. Science, Vol. 29, 1316-1325.

3. Cao, D. F. and Yang, N.* (2015) Structure and catalytic mechanisms of histone deacetylases. Progress in Biochemistry and Biophysics, Vol. 42, 1-16.

4. Yang, N.*, Yu, Z. Y., Hu, M. L., Wang, M., Lehmann, R.* and Xu, R. M.* (2015) Structure of Drosophila Oskar reveals a novel RNA binding protein. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci .USA, Vol. 112, 11541-11546.

5. Cao, D. F., Wang, M., Qiu X. Y., Liu D. X., Jiang H. L., Yang, N.* and Xu R. M.* (2015) Structural basis for allosteric, substrate dependent stimulation of SIRT1 activity by resveratrol. Genes & Development, Vol. 29, 1316-1325.

6. Wang, H., Wang, M., Yang, N.* and Xu, R. M.*(2015) Structure of the quaternary complex of histone H3-H4 heterodimer with chaperone ASF1 and the replicative helicase subunit MCM2. Protein & Cell, Vol. 6, 693-697.

7. Yang, N. and Xu, R. M.* (2014) Structural Basis for Methyl DNA Readout by MBD and SRA Domains. Progress in Biochemistry and Biophysics, Vol.41, 1063-1074.

8. Yang, D. X., Fang, Q. L., Wang, M., Ren, R., Wang, H., He, M., Sun, Y. W., Yang, N.* and Xu, R. M.* (2013) Nα-acetylated Sir3 stabilizes the conformation of a nucleosome-binding loop in the BAH domain. Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, Vol. 20, 1116-1118.

9. Yang, N.* and Xu, R. M.* (2013) Structure and function of the BAH domain in chromatin biology. Critical Reviews in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Vol. 48, 211-221.

10. Yang, N.*, Wang, W., Wang, Y., Wang, M., Zhao, Q., Rao, Z., Zhu, B.* and Xu, R. M.* (2012) Distinct mode of methyl-H3K4 recognition by tandem tudor-like domains of Spindlin1. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci .USA, Vol. 109, 17954-17959.

11. Yang, N., Li, D. F., Feng, L., Xiang, Y., Liu, W., Sun, H. and Wang, D. C.* (2009) Structural Basis for the Tumor Cell Apoptosis-Inducing Activity of an Antitumor Lectin from the Edible Mushroom Agrocybe aegerita. Journal of Molecular Biology, Vol. 387, 694-705.

12. Yang, N., Nan, J., Brostromer, E., Hatti-Kaul, R., and Su, X. D.* (2008) Crystal structure of an alkaline serine protease from Nesterenkonia sp. defines a novel family of secreted bacterial proteases. Proteins: Structure, Function and Bioinformatics, Vol. 73, 1072-1075.

13. Liu, W.#, Yang, N.#, Ding, J. J., Huang R. H., Hu, Z. and Wang, D. C.* (2005) Structural mechanism governing the quaternary organization of monocot mannose-binding lectin revealed by a novel monomeric structure. Journal of Biological Chemistry, Vol. 280, 14865-14876. (#Co-first authors)

14. Yang, N., Tong X., Xiang, Y., Sun, H. and Wang, D. C.* (2005) Molecular character of an antitumour lectin from the edible mushroom Agrocybe aegerita. The Journal of Biochemistry, Vol. 138, 145-150.

15. Yang, N., Xiang, Y., Zhang, Y. and Wang, D. C.* (2005) Crystallization and preliminary crystallographic studies of the recombinant antitumour lectin from the edible mushroom Agrocybe aegerita. BBA: Proteins and Proteomics, Vol. 1751, 209-212.

16. Yang, N., Liang, Y., Xiang, Y., Sun, H. and Wang, D. C.* (2005) Crystallization and preliminary crystallographic studies of an antitumour lectin from the edible mushroom Agrocybe aegerita. Protein and Peptide Letters, Vol. 12, 705-707.

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