Research Area:

As an emerging yet interdisciplinary field, bioimaging is revolutionizing biological and medical research. Trained as a general chemist, I have been approaching this field from a molecular aspect. We endeavor to develop novel small-molecular, macro-molecular and bio-molecular imaging probes by integrating the essence of chemical synthesis, spectroscopy, polymer chemistry and chemical biology. The molecular probes would be applied as advanced technologies to various fields including biophysics, cell biology, physiology and finally inspire drug discovery. Our research philosophy features: 1. Based on chemical principles, we customize tailored molecules as enabling solutions. 2. The platforms of CLS and IMM offer unique opportunities to bring modern molecular tools to the frontier of biological sciences and medicine. 3. The training in chemistry and biotechnology, the cross-disciplinary experience and the problem-solving mindset would wishfully broaden the career path of trainees.

PI: Zhixing Chen


Laboratory website

Selected Publications:(8)
1. Chen, Z.; Mercer, J. A. M.; Zhu, X.; Romaniuk, J. A. H.; Pfattner, R.; Cegelski, L.; Martinez, T. J.; Burns, N. Z.; Xia, Y. Mechanochemical unzipping of insulating polyladderene to semiconducting polyacetylene. Science 2017, 357, 475-479 [Front Cover].
2. Wei, L.; Chen, Z.; Shi, L.; Long, R.; Anzalone, A. V.; Zhang, L.; Hu, F.; Yuste, R.; Cornish, V. W.; Min, W. Super-multiplex vibrational imaging. Nature 2017, 544, 465-470. 
3. Chen, Z.; Paley, D. W.; Wei, L.; Weisman, A. L.; Friesner, R. A.; Nuckolls, C.; Min, W. Multicolor Live-Cell Chemical Imaging by Isotopically Edited Alkyne Vibrational Palette. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 8027–8033.
4. Chen, Z.; Jing, C.; Gallagher, S. S.; Sheetz, M. P.; Cornish, V. W. Second-Generation Covalent TMP-Tag for Live Cell Imaging. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 13692–13699.
5. Xiao, Q.#; Ren, W.-W.#; Chen, Z.-X.; Sun, T.-W.; Li, Y.; Ye, Q.-D.; Gong, J.-X.; Meng, F.-K.; You, L.; Liu, Y.-F.; Zhao, M.-Z.; Xu, L.-M.; Shan, Z.-H.; Shi, Y.; Tang, Y.-F.; Chen, J.-H.; Yang, Z. Diastereoselective Total Synthesis of (±)-Schindilactone A. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. Engl. 2011, 50, 7373–7377 [Front Cover].
6. Chen, Z.; Cornish, V. W.; Min, W. Chemical Tags: Inspiration for Advanced Imaging Techniques. Curr. Opin. Chem. Biol. 2013, 17, 637–643.
7. Gatzogiannis, E.#; Chen, Z.#; Wei, L.; Wombacher, R.; Kao, Y.-T.; Yefremov, G.; Cornish, V. W.; Min, W. Mapping Protein-Specific Micro-Environments in Live Cells by Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging of a Hybrid Genetic-Chemical Molecular Rotor Tag. Chem. Commun. (Camb). 2012, 48, 8694–8696.
8. Chen, Z.#; Wei, L.#; Zhu, X.#; Min, W. Extending the Fundamental Imaging-Depth Limit of Multi-Photon Microscopy by Imaging with Photo-Activatable Fluorophores. Opt. Express 2012, 20, 18525–18536.