Faculty Profile, National Health Research Institutes, Taiwan

Faculty Profiles


Hsiu-Jung Lo, Ph.D.

Associate Investigator
Division of Infectious Diseases
hjlo@nhri.org.tw

EDUCATION

Ph.D., Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, Indiana University, Bloomington, USA.
B.S., Plant Pathology, National Chung-Hsing University, Taiwan

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCES

- Associate Investigator, Division of Clinical Research, National Health Research Institutes, Taipei, Taiwan
- Assistant Investigator, Division of Clinical Research, National Health Research Institutes, Taipei, Taiwan
- Postdoctoral Fellow for Dr. Gerald Fink, Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Nine Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA, USA.

RESEARCH INTERESTS

Dr. Lo’s laboratory is working on epidemiology and pathogenesis of human yeast pathogens from the angle of basic research to improve the care of patients and develop new antifungal drugs. For the epidemiology study, Dr. Lo coordinates nationwide surveillance to determine the trends of distribution and drug susceptibility of yeast pathogens isolated from hospital patients including the high-risk HIV-infected patients in Taiwan. To understand the genetic relatedness and the mean of spreading, she also performs molecular typing on those yeast isolates. And, for providing better alternatives in therapy, she investigates the clinical risk factors for patients carrying drug resistant pathogens. In the pathogenesis study, Dr. Lo would like to identify genes coordinating drug resistance and virulence to further elucidate the signal transduction pathways of drug resistance and virulence in Candida albicans, the most common fungal pathogen causing human diseases. Hopefully, through this study, she would provide informative knowledge for design new antifungal drugs.

RESEARCH ACTIVITIES & ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Dr. Lo and Dr. Shu-Ying Li of Taiwan CDC organized a Taiwan mycology study group in 2002 to bring all scientists interested in medical mycology together as a team. To monitor the trends of distribution and drug susceptibility of yeast pathogens, Dr. Lo and her collaborator, Dr. Yun-Liang Yang at National Chiao Tung University is the first and only group conducting nationwide surveillance on yeast infections called TSARY standing for “Taiwan Surveillance of Antimicrobial Resistance of Yeasts.” Up-to-date, they have conducted three rounds of TSARYs and published their findings in international journals. Dr. Lo introduced C. albicans as a research model into Taiwan in 1998. Her observation that non-filamentous cph1/cph1 efg1/efg1 C.
albicans mutant is not lethal in a mouse model published in 1997 has opened a door for study the pathogenesis in C. albicans. Dr. Lo further expanded C. albicans into the model for studying drug resistance of fungal pathogens by investigating the regulation of drug efflux pump CDR1. Drs. Lo and Yang recently identified CaNdt80p involved in drug resistance through positively regulating CDR1 and it is the first reported transregulatory factor of CDR1. Furthermore, they found that another transcription factor Efg1p, coordinates both drug resistance and virulence in C. albicans, which provides a new strategy for designing new effective antifungal drugs.

SELECTED PUBLICATIONS

1. Yang YL, Lin YH, Tsao MY, Chen CG, Shih HI, Fan JC, Wang JS and Lo HJ*. Serum repressing efflux pump CDR1 in Candida albicans. BMC.Mol.Biol., 7:22, 2006. (*=Corresponding Author)
2. Chen CG, Yang YL, Cheng HH, C. L. Su CL, Huang SF, Chen CT, Liu YT, Su IJ and Lo HJ*. Non-lethal Candida albicans cph1/cph1 efg1/efg1 transcription factor mutant establishing restricted zone of infection in a mouse model of systemic infection. Int J Immunopathol Pharmacol., 19:561-565, 2006. (*=Corresponding Author)
3. Wang JS, Yang YL, Wu CJ, Ouyang KJ, Tseng KY, Chen CG, Wang H and Lo HJ*. The DNA-binding domain of CaNdt80p is required to activate CDR1 involved in drug resistance in Candida albicans. J Med.Microbiol., 55:1403-1411, 2006. (*=Corresponding Author)
4. Hung CC, Yang YL, Lauderdale TL, McDonald LC, Hsiao CF, Cheng HH, Ho YA and H. J. Lo HJ*. Colonization of human immunodeficiency virusinfected outpatients in Taiwan with Candida species. J Clin Microbiol., 43:1600-1603, 2005. (*=Corresponding Author)
5. Yang YL, Li SY, Cheng HH and Lo HJ*. Susceptibilities to amphotericin B and fluconazole of Candida species in TSARY 2002. Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis., 51:179-183, 2005. (*=Corresponding Author)
6. Lo HJ, Wang JS, Lin CY, Chen CG, Hsiao TY, Hsu CT, Su CL, Fann MJ, Ching YT and Yang YL. Efg1 involved in drug resistance by regulating the expression of ERG3 in Candida albicans. Antimicrob.Agents Chemother, 49:1213-1215, 2005.
7. Lo HJ, Kohler JR, DiDomenico B, Loebenberg D, Cacciapuoti A and Fink GR. Nonfilamentous C. albicans mutants are avirulent. Cell, 90:939-949, 1997.