About Jian Xu

Jian Xu received his PhD in molecular biology from UCLA while working in the laboratory of Stephen Smale, PhD. Dr. Xu’s doctoral work focused on epigenetic regulation of stem cell pluripotency. He was then selected as a Helen Hay Whitney-HHMI postdoctoral fellow at Boston Children’s Hospital, working in the laboratory of Stuart Orkin, MD. Here, Dr. Xu focused on understanding the developmental control of fetal-to-adult hemoglobin switching. Dr. Xu’s studies with Dr. Orkin were instrumental in identifying the zinc finger protein, BCL11A, as a molecular target for gene therapy for patients with inherited hemoglobin disorders.

Dr. Xu served as an instructor in pediatric hematology-oncology at Harvard Medical School before opening his own lab in the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern in 2014. In 2023, Dr. Xu joined the Department of Pathology and Center of Excellence for Leukemia Studies (CELS) at St. Jude where he investigates the regulatory processes controlling stem cell development and blood cancers. He also oversees the Advanced Technology and Genomics (ATG) Core.

Dr. Xu is the recipient of an American Society of Hematology (ASH) merit award (2009, 2010), an NIH career development award (2011), and was chosen as a Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) Scholar (2014). He also received an ASH Scholar Award (2015) and a Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Scholar Award (2019).

Science Team

Meet the Team

Sarada Achyutuni, PhD
  • Sarada Achyutuni, PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate
Donghong Cai, PhD
  • Donghong Cai, PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate
Hui Cao
  • Hui Cao
  • Manager, Laboratory Operations
Farhan Ahmad, PhD
  • Farhan Ahmad, PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate
Xiaofei (Steven) Gao, PhD
  • Xiaofei (Steven) Gao, PhD
  • Director, Laboratory Operations
Michael Lee Jr.
  • Michael Lee Jr.
  • MD-:PhD Graduate Student
Junhua Lyu, PhD
  • Junhua Lyu, PhD
  • Scientist
Bisi Miao, PhD
  • Bisi Miao, PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate
Noemi Reyes
  • Noemi Reyes
  • Researcher
Aditya Sheth
  • Aditya Sheth
  • Sr. Researcher
Tam Tran, PhD
  • Tam Tran, PhD
  • Scientist
Jin Wang, PhD
  • Jin Wang, PhD
  • Sr. Scientist
Kaili Wang, PhD
  • Kaili Wang, PhD
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate
Yuannyu Zhang, PhD
  • Yuannyu Zhang, PhD
  • Lead Bioinformatics Research Scientist

Lab Alumni

Giovanni Botten, MD, PhD

  • Role: MSTP Graduate Student
  • Tenure: 2018-2022
  • Post-lab experience: Medical School, UT Southwestern Medical Center

Chelsee Greer, DO

  • Role: Clinical Fellow
  • Tenure: 2020-2022
  • Post-lab experience: Hematologist, Children’s Medical Center Dallas

Kathryn Dickerson, MD

  • Role: Clinical Fellow, Instructor
  • Tenure: 2014-2023
  • Post-lab experience: Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, UT Southwestern Medical Center

Zhimin Gu, PhD

  • Role: Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Tenure: 2016-2022
  • Post-lab experience: Assistant Professor, SuZhou Institute of Systems Medicine, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences

Pranita Kaphle, MS

  • Role: Research Associate
  • Tenure: 2018-2023
  • Post-lab experience: Lab Manager, UT Southwestern Medical Center

Yoon Jung Kim, PhD

  • Role: Research Scientist
  • Tenure: 2019-2023
  • Post-lab experience: Assistant Professor, UT Southwestern Medical Center

Kailong Li, PhD

  • Role: Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Tenure: 2015-2020
  • Post-lab experience: Principal Investigator, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University

Xin Liu, PhD

  • Role: Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Tenure: 2014-2019
  • Post-lab experience: Principal Investigator, Shanghai Institute of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Yuxuan Liu, PhD

  • Role: Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Tenure: 2016-2020
  • Post-lab experience: Assistant Professor, Institute of Hematology and Blood Diseases, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences

McKenzie Patrick, PhD

  • Role: Graduate Student
  • Tenure: 2018-2022
  • Post-lab experience: Scientist in Precision Drug Development, Bayer

Gen Zhang, PhD

  • Role: Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Tenure: 2020-2021
  • Post-lab experience: Research Investigator, Western China Hospital

Sisi Zheng, MD

  • Role: Instructor in Pediatric Hematology/Oncology
  • Tenure: 2020-2023
  • Post-lab experience: Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, UT Southwestern Medical Center