Wei Niu, PhD

Research Investigator

Biography

Wei Niu, Ph.D., is a research investigator in the Department of Neurology in the University of Michigan Medical School. She also manages the Human Stem Cell and Gene Editing (HSCGE) Core at the University of Michigan Medical School, co-directed by Dr. Jack Parent and Dr. Michael Uhler.

Dr. Niu has more than ten years of research experiences in genomics through working with some of the leading experts at the top-tier research institutions in U.S. She received her doctorate degree in Cell and Molecular Biology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2007. Under the guidance of Dr. Edward Marcotte, she developed and applied high-throughput methods to profile genome-wide cellular phenotypes in model organism budding yeast and other microorganisms. As a postdoc researcher at Yale University, she studied the transcription regulatory network of the model organism C. elegans in the laboratory of Dr. Michael Snyder. She led a research team, as a part of modENCODE project funded by more than three hundred million dollars by NIH, to systematically characterize the spatial and temporal binding features of more than 100 transcription factors. Following her postdoctoral training, she applied her expertise in genomics to study autism as a research scientist in the group of Dr. James Noonan at Yale School of Medicine.

In 2016, Dr. Niu moved to the Department of Neurology to work with Dr. Jack Parent as a research investigator. Her main interest is to identify cellular and genetic mechanisms of epileptic disorders using in vitro models derived from human stem cells and genome editing. Her long-term goal is to understand the mechanism of human brain development, to eventually discover targets for novel mechanistic-based therapeutics to many human brain disorders such as epileptic disorders and autism spectrum disorders.

Areas of Interest

Human brain development, Neurons and cerebral organoids derived from human pluripotent stem cells; Genome editing; Epilepsy; Autism spectrum disorders

Credentials

Graduate training:

  • Ph.D., Cell and Molecular Biology, University of Texas at Austin, 2007

Postdoctoral training:

  • Genetics and Genomics, Yale University, 2008-2012

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