Mingxu You

Assistant Professor

Our research group is interested in creating synthetic DNA- and RNA-based tools for analytical and biomedical applications. Our research program integrates the disciplines of chemistry, bionanotechnology, cellular biology, and synthetic biology. Our ultimate goal is to understand the fundamentals of life, and to construct artificial genetic devices and pathways.

Current Research
Currently we have four primary research focuses:

  1. Discover novel molecular mechanisms for precise conditional self-assembly of nucleic acid nanostructures.
  2. Systematically evolve functional aptamers and ribozymes based on high-throughput approaches.
  3. Construct RNA circuits and dynamic devices for intracellular imaging of RNAs and metabolites.
  4. Develop photo-switchable tools for gene expression control, cancer diagnosis and targeted therapy.

Learn more at elements.chem.umass.edu/youlab/

Academic Background

  • BS Chemistry, Peking University, 2008
  • PhD Chemistry, University of Florida, 2012
  • Postdoctoral Scholar, Nano-Optic Joint Program between UF and MSU, 2013
  • Postdoctoral Scholar, Pharmacology, Weill Medical College, Cornell University, 2014-2016
A.P.K.K. Karunanayake Mudiyanselage, Q. Yu, M.A. Leon-Duque, B. Zhao, R. Wu & M. You*. (2018) Genetically encoded catalytic hairpin assembly for sensitive RNA imaging in live cells. J Am Chem Soc, ASAP.
B. Zhao, C. O’Brien, A.P.K.K. Karunanayake Mudiyanselage, N. Li, Y. Bagheri, R. Wu, Y. Sun & M. You*. (2017) Visualizing intercellular tensile forces by DNA-based membrane molecular probes. J Am Chem Soc, 139, 18182-18185.
M. You#*, Y. Lyu#, D. Han#, L. Qiu, Q. Liu, T. Chen, C. Wu, L. Peng, L. Zhang, G. Bao & W. Tan*. (2017) A DNA probe for monitoring dynamic and transient molecular encounters on live cell membranes. Nature Nanotechnology, 12, 453-459. (# Co-first author) (* Corresponding author)
D. Han#, C. Wu#, M. You#, T. Zhang, T. Chen, L. Qiu, Z. Zheng & W. Tan. (2015) A cascade reaction network mimicking the basic functional steps of acquired immune response. Nature Chemistry, 7, 835-841. (# Co-first author)
M. You#, J.L. Litke# & S.R. Jaffrey. (2015) Imaging metabolite dynamics in living cells using a spinach-based riboswitch. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 112, E2756-E2765. (# Co-first author)
G. Zhu, S. Cansiz, M. You, L. Qiu, D. Han, L. Zhang & W. Tan. (2015) Nuclease-resistant synthetic drug-DNA adducts: programmable drug-DNA conjugation for targeted anticancer drug delivery. NPG Asia Mater, 7, e169.
M. You, G. Zhu, M. Altman, J. Wang, T. Chen, M.J. Donovan & W. Tan. (2015) Programmable and multi parameter DNA-based logic platform for cancer recognition and targeted therapy. J Am Chem Soc, 137, 667-674.
M. You, L. Peng, N. Shao, L. Zhang, L. Qiu, C. Cui & W. Tan. (2014) DNA “nano-claw”: logic-based autonomous cancer targeting and therapy. J Am Chem Soc, 136, 1256-1259.
Contact Info

Department of Chemistry
867 LGRT
710 North Pleasant Street
Amherst, MA 01003-9292

(413) 545-4711