Pulmonary alveoli are essential for the vital gas exchange function of the lungs.The pulmonary alveolar epithelium is composed of alveolar type I (AT1) and alveolar type II (AT2) epithelial cells. The research goal of our laboratory is to understand the cellular and molecular basis of alveolar development and regeneration.
During the late embryonic development stage, the distal airways begin to expand and form thin wall terminal sacs. By employing a convergence of mouse genetics, cell biology, and three-dimensional time-lapse imaging, we are investigating the genetic and cellular mechanisms that underlie the complex orchestration of alveolar morphogenesis and alveolar epithelial cell fate specification.
The lungs are constantly exposed to environmental agents. The alveolar epithelium serves as an important epithelial barrier to protect our body from the outside world. We are interested in understanding the mechanisms that regulate post-injury alveolar epithelial cell regeneration. We are also interested in understanding how alveolar epithelial cells perform their distinct functions in lung homeostasis and diseases. Knowledge obtained from our studies should significantly advance our understanding of respiratory disorders and congenital defects in human neonates, and provide insight into adult lung regeneration after the lung injury. Furthermore, our studies will provide information that is fundamental for future bioengineering efforts aimed at generating a functional respiratory organ.
1. Zhe Liu, Huijuan Wu, Kewu Jiang,Yanjie Wang, Wenjing Zhang, Qiqi Chu, Juan Li, Huanwei Huang, Tao Cai, Hongbin Ji, Chun Yang,Nan Tang(2016) MAPK-mediated YAP activation controls mechanical-tension-induced pulmonary alveolar regeneration. Cell Report Volume 16, Issue 7, 16 August 2016, Pages 1810–1819
2.Tang, N., and Marshall, W.F. (2013) Computational analysis of the spatial distribution of mitotic spindle angles in mouse developing airway. Proc. SPIE 8593, 85930N doi: 10.1117/12.2002240
3. Tang N, Marshall WF (2012) Centriole and Centrosome Positioning - Lessons from Development. J Cell Sci 125(Pt21): 4951-6
4.Tang N, Marshall WF, McMahon M, Metzger RJ, Martin GR (2011) Control of mitotic spindle angle by the RAS-regulated ERK1/2 Pathway determines lung tube shape. Science 333:342-5. Also see “Tubular Transformation” (2011), Science Jul 15; 333: 294-295 (2011); “Development: The epithelial contortionists” (2011), Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology Sep 1; 12: 545
5. Zheng B, Tang T,Tang N, Kudlicka K, Ohtsubo K, Ma P, Marth JD, Farquhar MG and Lehtonen E (2006) Essential role of RGF-PX1/sorting nexin 13 in mouse development and regulation of endocytosis dynamics. PNAS 103 (45): 16776-81.
6.Tang N, Mack F, Haase VH, Simon MC and Johnson RS (2006) pVHL function is essential for endothelial extracellular matrix deposition. Mol Cell Biol. 26(7): 2519-30
7. Mendoza MC, Du F, Iranfar N,Tang N, Ma H, Loomis WF and Firtel RA (2005) Loss of SMEK, a novel, conserved protein, suppresses mek1 null cell polarity, chemotaxis and gene expression defects. Mol Cell Biol. Sep; 25(17): 7839-53.
8.Tang N, Wang LC, Esko J, Giodano F, Huang Y, Gerber HP, Ferrara N and Johnson RS (2004) Loss of HIF-1alpha in endothelial cells disrupts a hypoxia-driven VEGF autocrine loop necessary for tumorigenesis. Cancer Cell Nov; 6(5): 485-95.