Dr Min Zhao, USC research fellow


2003 - 2009 PhD in Bioinformatics, Peking University, Beijing, China

1999 - 2003 Undergraduate in Biological Engineering and certificate of Second Major in Computer Science, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an, Shanxi, People’s Republic of China


Previous Positions (For academics/ post docs)

2011 - 2014, Post doctoral, Department of Biomedical Informatics, Vanderbilt University Medical Center


Dr. Min Zhao is the USC research fellow focusing on bioinformatics. After he obtained a PhD degree from Peking University in Bioinformatics, he joined the leading paleontology and paleoanthropology in China to explore the crap fish fossils in Tibetan basins. From 2011 September to 2014 May, he was doing his postdoctoral research at the department of biomedical informatics in the medical center of the Vanderbilt University. His research in the Vanderbilt University involves the application of the whole-exome sequencing and RNA sequencing technologies to decipher the mechanism of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) and Neuroendocrine Hyperplasia for Infancy (NEHI). Dr. Zhao has extensive experiences on biological database construction, network-based systems biological data mining and integrative genomic study. He has developed numerous biomedical databases and made them publicly available, including PAHKB, dbEMT, PCdb, TSGene, CNVannoatator, IQdb, PROTEOME(SKY)-LIVER(Hu) 1.0, TSdb, PathLocdb, RLEdb, and SynDB (,, With his interdisciplinary training and unique bioinformatics work in genomics research, he has strong desire and commitment to participating marine genomics projects for the University of the Sunshine Coast by focusing sponge and starfish genomics studies.

Research areas

NGS data analysis on sponge genomics

Comparative genomics on marine invertebrates (starfish genome annotation and comparative study).

Teaching areas


Professional memberships

Member of American Society of Human Genetics


K.C. Wong Post-Doctoral Fellowship Award, Chinese Academy of Science (2010)

Outstanding Graduate Student Award, Peking University (2008)

Dongbao Student Award, Peking University (2007)

Jialiliangyou Student Award, Peking University (2006)

Chapters & Publications

Min Zhao, Xin Chen, Ge Gao, Louis Tao, Liping Wei. RLEdb: a database of Rate-Limiting Enzymes and their regulation in Human, Rat, Mouse, Yeast and E. coli. Cell Research (IF=11.981), (2009) 19(6):793-795.

Min Zhao, Eric D. Austin, Anna R. Hemnes, James E. Loyd and Zhongming Zhao. An evidence-based knowledgebase of pulmonary arterial hypertension to identify genes and pathways relevant to pathogenesis. Mol BioSyst. (2014), 10 (4), 732-740, recommended by Faculty 1000 website (

Zhao M, Sun J, Zhao Z. TSGene: a web resource for tumor suppressor genes. Nucl. Acids Res (IF=8.808), (2013) 41 (D1): D970-D976.

Min Zhao, Lei Kong, Hong Qu. A systems biology approach to identify intelligence quotient score-related genomics regions, and pathways relevant to potential therapeutic treatments. Scientific reports (IF=5.078), (2014) srep04176.

Yong-Xin Ye, Qing-Rong Liu, Chuan-Yun Li, Min Zhao (co-corresponding author), Hong Qu, Human Transporter Database: comprehensive knowledge and discovery tools in the human transporter genes. PLoS ONE, (2014), 9 (2), e88883.

Lei Kong, Lu Cheng, Liya Fan, Min Zhao (co-corresponding author), Hong Qu, IQdb: an intelligence quotient score associated gene resource for human intelligence. Database (IF=4.457), Vol. 2013 (01 January 2013), bat063, doi:10.1093/database/bat063.

Zhao M, Sun J, Zhao Z. Synergetic regulatory networks mediated by oncogene-driven microRNAs and transcription factors in serous ovarian cancer. Mol BioSyst, (2013), DOI: 10.1039/c3mb70172g.

Min Zhao, Qingguo Wang, Quan Wang, Peilin Jia, Zhongming Zhao: Computational tools for copy number variation (CNV) detection using next-generation sequencing data: features and perspectives. BMC Bioinformatics, (2013) (14) (Suppl 11):S1.

Zhao M, Zhao Z. CNVannotator: a comprehensive annotation server for copy number variation in humans. ( PLoS One (2013) 8(11):e80170.

Min Zhao, Xiaomo Li, Hong Qu: Identifying adipocytokine signaling pathway in eating disorder using an integrative systems biology approach. Sci China Life Sci, (2013), 56 (12):1086-1096.

Zhao M, Sun J, Zhao Z. Distinct and competitive regulatory patterns of tumor suppressor genes and oncogenes in ovarian cancer. PLoS ONE, (2012) 7, e44175.

Zhao M, Sun J, Zhao Z. Comprehensive analyses of tumor suppressor genes in protein-protein interaction networks: A topological perspective. 2012 IEEE International Workshop on Genomic Signal Processing and Statistics (GENSIPS), p101-102.

Min Zhao, Hong Qu. High similarity of phylogenetic profiles of rate-limiting enzymes pairs with inhibitory relation in Human, Rat, Mouse, Yeast and E. coli. BMC genomics, (2011) (12) (Suppl 3):S10.

Zhao M, Chen Y M, Qu D C, et al. TSdb: a database of transporter substrates linking metabolic pathways and transporter systems on a genome scale via their shared substrates. Sci China Life Sci, 2011, 54: 1–5

Min Zhao, Hong Qu. PathLocdb: a comprehensive database for subcellular localization of metabolic pathway and its application for multiple localization analysis. BMC genomics, (2010) (11) (Suppl 4):S13.

Min Zhao, Hong Qu. Human liver rate-limiting enzymes influence the metabolic flux via branch points and inhibitors. BMC genomics, (2009) (10) (Suppl 3):S31.

Jingchun Sun, Min Zhao, Ayman Fanous and Zhongming Zhao: Characterization of schizophrenia adverse drug interactions through a network approach and drug classification. BioMed Research International, Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 458989.

Zhang, W., Zhang, Y., Zheng, H., Zhang, C., Xiong, W., Olyarchuk, J.G., Walker, M., Xu, W., Zhao, M., Zhao, S., Zhou Z., Liping Wei. SynDB: a Synapse protein Database based on synapse ontology. Nucl. Acids Res, (2006) 35, D737-741.

First Insight into the Human Liver Proteome from PROTEOMESKY-LIVERHu 1.0. A Publicly Available Database Chinese Human Liver Proteome Profiling Consortium. Journal of Proteome Research, (2010) 9 (1), 79-94.

Xu LM, Li JR, Huang Y, Zhao M, Tang X, Liping Wei. AutismKB: an evidence-based knowledgebase of autism genetics. Nucl. Acids Res, (2012) 40, D1016-22.

Ramkrishna Mitra, Jingchun Sun, Min Zhao, Zhongming Zhao. Reproducible combinatorial regulatory networks elucidate novel oncogenic microRNAs in non-small cell lung cancer. RNA (2014) Sep; 20(9):1356-68.

Stewart MJ, Favrel P, Rotgans BA, Wang T, Zhao M, Sohail M, O'Connor WA, Elizur A, Henry J, Cummins SF. Neuropeptides encoded by the genomes of the Akoya pearl oyster Pinctata fucata and Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas: a bioinformatic and peptidomic survey. BMC Genomics. 2014 Oct 2;15:840.