1. Genome-wide mechanism of eukaryotic transcription and translation and its significance in species evolution.
This direction includes alternative transcription starts, alternative splicing, back-splicing, alternative polyadenylation, alterantive translation, and many RNA modications (such as m6A, m5C, and RNA editing).
2. Human diseases, especially for the brain disorders (such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, Alzheimers' disease, autism...) and cancers.
3. Virulence evolution of pathogenic fungi.
I am interested in how pathogenic fungi adapt to the infection process. We combine computational and molecular experiments to study it.
Zhang, J., and Xu, C. (2022) Gene product diversity: adaptive or not? Trends in Genetics, In press
Xu, C., and Zhang, J (2021) Mammalian circular RNAs result largely from splicing errors. Cell Reports., 36:109439.
Xu, C., and Zhang, J. (2020). Mammalian alternative translation initiation is mostly nonadaptive. Molecular Biology and Evolution. Mar 7. pii: msaa063. doi: 10.1093/molbev/msaa063.
Xu, C., and Zhang, J. (2020) A different perspective on alternative cleavage and polyadenylation. Nature Review Genetics., doi: 10.1038/s41576-019-0198-z