Xuan Zhang, PhD

Research Assistant Professor
Dept. of Cancer Biology
Member, Center for Reproductive Sciences

M.D., Shanxi Medical University, 1996
Ph.D., Shanxi Medical University, 2001
Postdoctoral, University of Kansas Medical Center, 2002-2004


My current research is focused on developing and investigating novel therapeutics for endocrine-related cancer, especially breast cancer. In collaboration other researchers, I am investigating the efficacy and mechanism of action of Withaferin A in breast cancer. Withaferin A is a steroidal lactone occurring in Withania somnifera that has shown cytotoxicity in a variety of tumor cell lines and in animal cancer models in vivo without any noticeable systemic toxicity. Elucidating its mechanism of action in breast cancer may lead to significant improvement in breast cancer chemo-prevention.

Selected Publications

Samadi AK, Zhang X, Mukerji R, Donnelly AC, Blagg BS, Cohen MS. (2011) A novel C-terminal HSP90 inhibitor KU135 induces apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in melanoma cells. Cancer Letter 2011 Aug 22 [Epub ahead of print]. PMID:21924824.   

Zhang X, Mukerji R,  Samadi AK, Cohen MS. (2011) Down-regulation of estrogen receptor-alpha and Rearranged during Transfection tyrosine kinase is associated with Withaferin A-induced apoptosis in MCF-7 breast cancer cells. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine in press.

Zhang X. Hepatocyte growth factor system in the mouse uterus: variation across the estrous cycle and regulation by 17-beta-estradiol and progesterone. Biol Reprod. 2010 Jun;82(6):1037-48.

Nothnick WB, Zhang X. Future targets in endometriosis treatment: targeting the endometriotic implant. Mini Rev Med Chem. 2009 Mar;9(3):324-8.

Gerin I, Louis GW, Zhang X, Prestwich TC, Kumar TR, Myers MG Jr, Macdougald OA, Nothnick WB. Hyperphagia and obesity in female mice lacking tissue inhibitor  of metalloproteinase-1. Endocrinology. 2009 Apr;150(4):1697-704.

Zhang X, Hoang E, Nothnick WB. Estrogen-induced uterine abnormalities in TIMP-1 deficient mice are associated with elevated plasmin activity and reduced expression of the novel uterine plasmin protease inhibitor serpinb7. Mol Reprod Dev. 2009 Feb;76(2):160-72.

Zhang X, Christenson LK, Nothnick WB. Regulation of MMP-9 expression and activity in the mouse uterus by estrogen. Mol Reprod Dev. 2007 Mar;74(3):321-31. 

Zhang X, Nothnick WB. The role and regulation of the uterine matrix metalloproteinase system in menstruating and non-menstruating species. Front Biosci. 2005 Jan 1;10:353-66.

Hu J, Zhang X, Nothnick WB, Spencer TE. Matrix metalloproteinases and their tissue inhibitors in the developing neonatal mouse uterus. Biol Reprod. 2004 Nov;71(5):1598-604.

Zhou HE, Zhang X, Nothnick WB. Disruption of the TIMP-1 gene product is associated with accelerated endometrial gland formation during early postnatal uterine development. Biol Reprod. 2004 Aug;71(2):534-9.

Nothnick WB, Zhang X, Zhou HE. Steroidal regulation of uterine edema and tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinase (TIMP)-3 messenger RNA expression is altered in TIMP-1-deficient mice. Biol Reprod. 2004 Feb;70(2):500-8.
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Xuan Zhang, PhD


Xuan Zhang, PhD
Research Assistant Professor
Dept. of Cancer Biology