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Jianfeng Lu

Jianfeng Lu

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Associate Professor

Biography

Jianfeng Lu was born in a small town in China. He likes Biology and Medicine since he was in Mid-school. He treat biology and medicine research as one of the greatest jobs in the world. He is proud of being a bio-medical researcher, because he think through my research, maybe he could do something really good for the whole human beings. Now he is focusing on the research on induced pluripotent stem cells, induced neural cells and neural degeneration diseases. He hopes that he can share the knowledge with the world and make something translated into clinical medicine to help the patients out of pain.

Research

During more than ten years of clinical and biomedical study, He gradually focuses his research area in Stem cells and Neurosciences, which he treats as an important and essential component for Regeneration Medicine. As for the Stem cells part, He is interested in generation of pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), generation of induced neural stem cells (iNP/iNSC) and generation of induced precursors of some neuronal subtypes, such as serotonin neuron precursors (i5-HTP); And at the same time, he is trying his best to uncover the mechanism behind the phenomenon. He took charge in the iPSC core at Waisman center in University of Wisconsin-Madison from 2009 to 2011 and played the role as one of the advisors of iPSC Service in 2012, in which he generated more than 28 iPSC cell lines from different patients, such as Down Syndrome (DS), Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) and Rett Syndrome (RS). They use patients’ iPSC derived neurons or glial cells to compare with the wild type target cells, and then find the differences in phenotypes and functions. With some compounds treatment or genetic modification, he could rescue some important phenotypes in the in vitro system, which potentially could help the discovery of new targets to treat the patients and the screening of new drugs for therapy. They really hope via this approach, we could find some efficient ways to treat the patients with neural degeneration diseases. As for the Neurosciences part, He is interested in neural differentiation and specification. He did some research on mouse embryonic stem cells and its neural differentiation. Through experiments, they found that retinoic acid (RA) could promote neural lineage entry by ESCs in adherent monolayer culture systems and this effect depends on RA signaling and its crosstalk with the ERK and Wnt pathways. Recently, they use human pluripotent stem cells (PSC) to generate many subtypes of neurons and glial cells. Beside the phenotype comparison between normal persons and patients which are mentioned above, they also use these PSC-derived- neurons or glial cells to transplant into the animal models to see the cell-therapy effects, especially for some cell-type deficient neural diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease (PD). He is still learning from others and the work. He hopes one day he could really bring some useful information to those patients and help them to relief some pain.