Yuhe Renee Yang

Ph.D., Professor in NCNST



2017-2021   The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA, USA
                      Postdoctoral Research Associate; Advisor: Andrew B. Ward

2011–2016   The Biodesign Institute, Arizona State University, AZ, USA  
                      Ph.D. in biochemistry; Advisor: Hao Yan

2007–2011   Tsinghua University, Beijing, P. R. China                    
                       B.S. in Chemistry, Advisor Dongsheng Liu, outstanding thesis award

Research Interest

I am a structural biologist with over four years of experience in solving viral cryoEM structures. I combine this expertise with seven years of experience specializing in DNA nanotechnology and protein modification. My research currently builds DNA nano scaffolds to enable parallel imaging for sera samples, identifying antibodies targeting different strains of influence, HIV, and coronaviruses, aiming to help the optimization of vaccine and drug design.

Dr. Yang ‘Renee’’s research focused on DNA self-assembly and immune response evaluation and modulation. She has developed site-specific and non-site-specific protein-DNA conjugation and assembly methods, which can arrange any proteins of interest with controlled position, ratio, and orientation on DNA scaffolds. With this method, Renee created artificial multi-enzyme DNA complexes and networks that addressed important fundamental enzymology issues related to multi-enzyme catalysis. Renee also used new principles and approaches for designing self-assembled catalysts that have broad applications in the production of high-value products in industry and bioenergy as well as diagnostic applications in biomedicine. During postdoc training, Renee solved high-resolution cryoEM structures of HIV surface protein and neutralizing antibody complexes, demonstrated the structural details, and revealed the molecular interactions at the ‘glycan hole’ epitope and explained why it is difficult to broaden, contributed to improving HIV vaccine design. Dr. Yang is continuing research in using DNA nanostructure as molecular scaffolds and develop next-generation vaccine and EM-based immune response evaluation platform.



Work life photos

  • Renee's farewell gift--a lab6 filament.

  • Renee's postdoc journey.

  • Renee&Andrew_ postdocPl.