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Wei Xu

Faculty: Wei Xu, PhD

Dept: Associate Professor, Oncology
Contact: 7457 WIMR II
425 Henry Mall

Madison, WI
Training Areas:
  • Molecular Pharmacology
  • Cellular & Molecular Biology
  • Endocrinology-Reproductive Physiology
  • Cancer Biology Graduate Training Program
  • Molecular Environmental Toxicology Center (METC)
Lab Page: Click Here

Research Interests

Image related to research.

Figure 1

Our laboratory is focused on the transcriptional regulation of estrogen receptor (ER) signaling pathways by nuclear receptor co-factors. Our major interest is on a protein arginine (R) methyltransferase CARM1/PRMT4, a nuclear hormone receptor co-activator. Histone H3 methylation by CARM1 potentiates target gene activation by ER.

Our ongoing studies include combining biochemical and functional genomic approaches to understand ER-regulated processes controlled by CARM1 and the mechanism by which histone arginine modification contributes to the epigenetic control of cancer cells.

We will also employ mice genetics to decipher the significance of histone arginine methylation in tumor prevention, thereby facilitating the rational design of novel chemotherapy drugs by targeting the epigenome in breast cancer.

Research Focus

Honors & Awards

Research Breakthroughs

  • Discover non-histone substrates for CARM1 (paper published in Cancer Cell)

Lab Members

  • Graduate students: Ashley Brinkman, Carlos Coriano, Hao Zeng, Zibo Zhao, Qiang Wang
  • Postdoc fellows; Taryn James, Lu Wang, Shinya Aoyama, Fabao Liu
  • Visiting Scholar: Yali Liu
  • Lab manager: Yidan Wang

Selected Publications (Find publications on PubMed)

  • Zhao Z, Wang L, Xu W (2014). IL-13Ra2 mediates PNR-induced migration and metastasis in ERa-negative breast cancer. Oncogene, in press.
  • Wang L, Zhao Z, Meyer MB, Saha S, Yu M, Guo A, Wisinski KB, Huang W, Cai W, Pike JW, Yuan M, Ahlquist P, Xu W (2014). CARM1 methylates chromatin remodeling factor BAF155 to enhance tumor progression and metastasis. Cancer Cell, 25: 1-16.
  • Wang L, Charoensuksai P, Watson N, Wang X, Zhao Z, Coriano CG, Kerr L, Xu W, (2013). CARM1 automethylation is controlled at the level of alternative splicing, Nucleic Acid Research, 41: 6870-6880.
  • Wu J and Xu W (2012). Histone H3R17me2a mark recruits human PAF complex to activate transcription. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 109: 5675-80.
  • Powell E, Xu W (2008). Intermolecular interactions identify ligand-selective activity of estrogen receptor a/b dimers. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., USA, 105: 19012-19017.