Zhaozhu Qiu

Image of Dr.Zhaozhu Qiu

Zhaozhu Qiu

Assistant Professor
Primary Appointment: 
Secondary Appointment: 
Office: 410-614-3795

725 N. Wolfe Street
WBSB 216
Baltimore MD 21205

Research topic: 

Molecular Biology and Physiology of Ion Transport


Chloride is the most abundant free negatively charged ion in the body. Chloride channels are cell-membrane embedded proteins, allowing the movement of chloride in and out of the cells. Defects in chloride fluxes are responsible for many human disorders. However, we know little about some of these mysterious gate-keepers in cells.

Our Lab develops high throughput functional genomics screening approaches and has recently identified two novel chloride channels: SWELL1 volume-regulated anion channel and PAC proton-activated chloride channel.  We are interested in elucidating the molecular identity, regulation, cell biological and physiological function of these novel ion channels with a focus on the nervous system (neuron and glia), and revealing their potential role in diverse neurological disease, such as ischemic stroke, pain, epilepsy and glioma. Toward that goal, we employs a multi-disciplinary approach including mouse genetics, cell and brain slice electrophysiology, biochemistry, and imaging techniques.

We are always looking for curious and motivated graduate students to join the lab. Please visit our lab page or email me to learn more about our research.


Selected Publications: 

Yang J*, Chen J*, Vitery MDC*, Osei-Owusu J, Chu J, Yu H, Sun S, Qiu Z. (2019) PAC, an evolutionarily conserved membrane protein, is a proton-activated chloride channel. Science. 364: 395-399.

Yang J, Vitery MDC, Chen J, Osei-Owusu J, Chu J, Qiu Z. (2019) Glutamate-releasing SWELL1 channel in astrocytes modulates synaptic transmission and promotes brain damage in stroke. Neuron. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2019.03.029.

Syeda R*, Qiu Z*, Dubin AE, Murthy SE, Florendo MN, Mason DE, Mathur J, Cahalan SM, Peters EC, Montal M, Patapoutian A. (2016) LRRC8 proteins form volume-regulated anion channels that sense ionic strength. Cell. 164: 499-51.

Qiu Z, Dubin AE, Mathur J, Tu B, Reddy K, Miraglia LJ, Reinhardt J, Orth AP, Patapoutian A. (2014) SWELL1, a plasma membrane protein, is an essential component of volume-regulated anion channel. Cell. 157: 447-458.