The flow of genetic information is critically dependent on the structure and integrity of DNA. DNA is challenged by endogenous and environmental factors, which produces a plethora of DNA modifications. Certain DNA modifications play a role in genetic regulation, whereas others have mutagenic and pathogenic effects. The overarching goal of our research is to understand the chemical and molecular mechanisms by which human genome is maintained. We are particularly interested in the interactions between DNA and proteins/enzymes in the context of DNA replication and repair in the nucleus and mitochondria. We use biochemical, biophysical, computational, and cellular approaches to gain fundamental insights into DNA maintenance with a long-term goal to inform the development of novel therapeutics or disease intervention strategies. 


our Research

Recent NEWS

We welcome Ph.D. students, Ching-Hsin Yang, Yu Hsuan Chen, and Jacob Perkins!

Apr 2020, Dr. Chaoxing Liu joining us as a postdoctoral fellow! Welcome, Chaoxing!

Check out our recent publications on TFAM, mitochondrial DNA damage, and more!

Aug 2019, the Zhao lab officially relocated to the University of California, Riverside!


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our Facility

    We are located in the state-of-the-art Multidisciplinary Research Building, UCR’s newest and largest research building. The write-up area oversees UCR Bell Tower and has a spectacular view of the snow-capped San Gabriel Mountains over the winter (picture on top of the page).