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Pinghui Feng, PhD
Professor of Molecular Microbiology & Immunology
Molecular Microbiology and Immunology
NTT 6428A 1441 Eastlake Avenue Health Sciences Campus Los Angeles
+1 323 865 0905


Dr. Pinghui Feng is an Associate Professor in the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology at USC. At USC, he organizes the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology Student/Fellow Seminar Series, serves as a PIBBS mentor and is a member of the USC Institute for Emerging Pathogens and Immune Diseases. Previous teaching positions include instructor at Harvard Medical School and assistant professor at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

Dr. Feng’s group investigates the roles of innate immune signaling pathways in infection and pathogenesis of human oncogenic gamma herpesvirus, Kaposi’s sarcoma-associated herpesvirus (KSHV). Recently, his group has uncovered that the MAVS-dependent innate immune pathway is exploited to promote viral lytic replication and to abrogate antiviral cytokine production. Given the inflammatory nature of KSHV-associated malignancies, Dr. Feng’s laboratory is also developing animal model(s) to interrogate key functions of innate immune signaling components in inflammation-driven oncogenesis. Currently, research in Dr. Feng’s laboratory is supported by grants from NCI, NIDCR and an ACS. Moreover, Dr. Feng is a faculty that actively participates teaching of graduate students and medical students, and supervises five postdoctoral fellows and one graduate student of his team. With extensive experience in research and teaching/mentoring trainees, Dr. Feng is highly qualified to serve as a mentor for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.


. Deregulation of HDAC5 by Viral Interferon Regulatory Factor 3 Plays an Essential Role in Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus-Induced Lymphangiogenesis MBio. 2018 Jan 16; 9(1). View in: PubMed

. Novel Role of vBcl2 in the Virion Assembly of Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus J Virol. 2018 02 15; 92(4). View in: PubMed

. Dwarf and short grain 1, encoding a putative U-box protein regulates cell division and elongation in rice J Plant Physiol. 2017 Feb; 209:84-94. View in: PubMed

. A Viral Deamidase Targets the Helicase Domain of RIG-I to Block RNA-Induced Activation Cell Host Microbe. 2016 Dec 14; 20(6):770-784. View in: PubMed

. Virol Sin. 2016 Dec; 31(6):457-465. View in: PubMed

. PRKAA/AMPK restricts HBV replication through promotion of autophagic degradation Autophagy. 2016 Sep; 12(9):1507-20. View in: PubMed

. Flexible Metal Oxide/Graphene Oxide Hybrid Neuromorphic Transistors on Flexible Conducting Graphene Substrates Adv Mater. 2016 Jul; 28(28):5878-85. View in: PubMed

. Emerging Roles of Protein Deamidation in Innate Immune Signaling J Virol. 2016 May; 90(9):4262-4268. View in: PubMed

. Proton-Conducting Graphene Oxide-Coupled Neuron Transistors for Brain-Inspired Cognitive Systems Adv Mater. 2016 May; 28(18):3557-63. View in: PubMed

. An Oncogenic Virus Promotes Cell Survival and Cellular Transformation by Suppressing Glycolysis PLoS Pathog. 2016 May; 12(5):e1005648. View in: PubMed

. Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity Regulation in Solution-Gated Indium-Gallium-Zinc-Oxide Electric-Double-Layer Transistors ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2016 Apr 20; 8(15):9762-8. View in: PubMed

. A Gammaherpesvirus Noncoding RNA Is Essential for Hematogenous Dissemination and Establishment of Peripheral Latency mSphere. 2016 Apr; 1(2). View in: PubMed

. Oxide-based Synaptic Transistors Gated by Sol-Gel Silica Electrolytes ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2016 Feb 10; 8(5):3050-5. View in: PubMed

. Hijacking GPCRs by viral pathogens and tumor Biochem Pharmacol. 2016 08 15; 114:69-81. View in: PubMed

. Cell Rep. 2016 07 12; 16(2):405-418. View in: PubMed

. Flexible Sensory Platform Based on Oxide-based Neuromorphic Transistors Sci Rep. 2015 Dec 11; 5:18082. View in: PubMed

. Recent advances on viral manipulation of NF-? B signaling pathway. Curr Opin Virol. 2015 Dec; 15:103-11. View in: PubMed

. Akt Kinase-Mediated Checkpoint of cGAS DNA Sensing Pathway Cell Rep. 2015 Oct 13; 13(2):440-9. View in: PubMed

. Freestanding Artificial Synapses Based on Laterally Proton-Coupled Transistors on Chitosan Membranes Adv Mater. 2015 Oct 07; 27(37):5599-604. View in: PubMed

. An Internally Translated MAVS Variant Exposes Its Amino-terminal TRAF-Binding Motifs to Deregulate Interferon Induction PLoS Pathog. 2015 Jul; 11(7):e1005060. View in: PubMed

. Recombinant Murine Gamma Herpesvirus 68 Carrying KSHV G Protein-Coupled Receptor Induces Angiogenic Lesions in Mice PLoS Pathog. 2015 Jun; 11(6):e1005001. View in: PubMed

. Association of Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus ORF31 with ORF34 and ORF24 Is Critical for Late Gene Expression J Virol. 2015 Jun; 89(11):6148-54. View in: PubMed

. Identification of the Essential Role of Viral Bcl-2 for Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus Lytic Replication J Virol. 2015 May; 89(10):5308-17. View in: PubMed

. Viral pseudo-enzymes activate RIG-I via deamidation to evade cytokine production Mol Cell. 2015 Apr 02; 58(1):134-46. View in: PubMed

. Herpesviral G protein-coupled receptors activate NFAT to induce tumor formation via inhibiting the SERCA calcium ATPase PLoS Pathog. 2015 Mar; 11(3):e1004768. View in: PubMed

. CBP-dependent Wnt/ß-catenin signaling is crucial in regulation of MDR1 transcription Curr Cancer Drug Targets. 2015; 15(6):519-32. View in: PubMed

. Urotensin-II-Mediated Reactive Oxygen Species Generation via NADPH Oxidase Pathway Contributes to Hepatic Oval Cell Proliferation PLoS One. 2015; 10(12):e0144433. View in: PubMed

. Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus K3 and K5 ubiquitin E3 ligases have stage-specific immune evasion roles during lytic replication J Virol. 2014 Aug; 88(16):9335-49. View in: PubMed

. Influencing factors of the quality of life in Chinese burn patients: Investigation with adapted Chinese version of the BSHS-B Burns. 2014 Jun; 40(4):731-6. View in: PubMed

. Dissecting innate immune signaling in viral evasion of cytokine production J Vis Exp. 2014 Mar 02; (85). View in: PubMed

. Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus viral interferon regulatory factor 4 (vIRF4) targets expression of cellular IRF4 and the Myc gene to facilitate lytic replication J Virol. 2014 Feb; 88(4):2183-94. View in: PubMed

. J Virol. 2014 Jan; 88(1):444-55. View in: PubMed

. Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus K7 modulates Rubicon-mediated inhibition of autophagosome maturation J Virol. 2013 Nov; 87(22):12499-503. View in: PubMed

. PtdIns(3)P-bound UVRAG coordinates Golgi-ER retrograde and Atg9 transport by differential interactions with the ER tether and the beclin 1 complex Nat Cell Biol. 2013 Oct; 15(10):1206-1219. View in: PubMed

. IKK epsilon kinase is crucial for viral G protein-coupled receptor tumorigenesis Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Jul 02; 110(27):11139-44. View in: PubMed

. Evasion of adaptive and innate immune response mechanisms by? -herpesviruses. Curr Opin Virol. 2013 Jun; 3(3):285-95. View in: PubMed

. Murine gammaherpesvirus 68 evades host cytokine production via replication transactivator-induced RelA degradation J Virol. 2012 Feb; 86(4):1930-41. View in: PubMed

. Clinical characteristics of critical patients with pandemic influenza A (H1N1) virus infection in Chengdu, China J Zhejiang Univ Sci B. 2012 Jan; 13(1):49-55. View in: PubMed

. PLoS Pathog. 2011 Nov; 7(11):e1002336. View in: PubMed

. Dissecting host-virus interaction in lytic replication of a model herpesvirus J Vis Exp. 2011 Oct 07; (56). View in: PubMed

. Elevated expression of urotensin II and its receptor in diethylnitrosamine-mediated precancerous lesions in rat liver Peptides. 2011 Feb; 32(2):382-7. View in: PubMed

. Murine gamma-herpesvirus 68 hijacks MAVS and IKKbeta to initiate lytic replication PLoS Pathog. 2010 Jul 29; 6(7):e1001001. View in: PubMed

. Sulfotyrosines of the Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus G protein-coupled receptor promote tumorigenesis through autocrine activation J Virol. 2010 Apr; 84(7):3351-61. View in: PubMed

. Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus K7 induces viral G protein-coupled receptor degradation and reduces its tumorigenicity PLoS Pathog. 2008 Sep 19; 4(9):e1000157. View in: PubMed

. Beclin1-binding UVRAG targets the class C Vps complex to coordinate autophagosome maturation and endocytic trafficking Nat Cell Biol. 2008 Jul; 10(7):776-87. View in: PubMed

. A novel inhibitory mechanism of mitochondrion-dependent apoptosis by a herpesviral protein PLoS Pathog. 2007 Dec; 3(12):e174. View in: PubMed

. UVRAG: a new player in autophagy and tumor cell growth Autophagy. 2007 Jan-Feb; 3(1):69-71. View in: PubMed

. Autophagic and tumour suppressor activity of a novel Beclin1-binding protein UVRAG Nat Cell Biol. 2006 Jul; 8(7):688-99. View in: PubMed

. Inhibition of the ATM/p53 signal transduction pathway by Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus interferon regulatory factor 1 J Virol. 2006 Mar; 80(5):2257-66. View in: PubMed

. Characterization of the Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus K1 signalosome J Virol. 2005 Oct; 79(19):12173-84. View in: PubMed

. mRNA decay during herpes simplex virus (HSV) infections: protein-protein interactions involving the HSV virion host shutoff protein and translation factors eIF4H and eIF4A J Virol. 2005 Aug; 79(15):9651-64. View in: PubMed

. Inhibition of T cell receptor signal transduction by tyrosine kinase-interacting protein of Herpesvirus saimiri J Exp Med. 2004 Sep 06; 200(5):681-7. View in: PubMed

. Activation of Stat3 transcription factor by Herpesvirus saimiri STP-A oncoprotein J Virol. 2004 Jun; 78(12):6489-97. View in: PubMed

. Modulation of T-cell receptor signal transduction by herpesvirus signaling adaptor protein Mol Cell Biol. 2004 Jun; 24(12):5369-82. View in: PubMed

. Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus K7 protein targets a ubiquitin-like/ubiquitin-associated domain-containing protein to promote protein degradation Mol Cell Biol. 2004 May; 24(9):3938-48. View in: PubMed

. Distinct roles of cellular Lck and p80 proteins in herpesvirus saimiri Tip function on lipid rafts J Virol. 2003 Aug; 77(16):9041-51. View in: PubMed

. Kaposi's sarcoma-associated herpesvirus mitochondrial K7 protein targets a cellular calcium-modulating cyclophilin ligand to modulate intracellular calcium concentration and inhibit apoptosis J Virol. 2002 Nov; 76(22):11491-504. View in: PubMed

. mRNA degradation by the virion host shutoff (Vhs) protein of herpes simplex virus: genetic and biochemical evidence that Vhs is a nuclease J Virol. 2002 Sep; 76(17):8560-71. View in: PubMed

. TL1A is a TNF-like ligand for DR3 and TR6/DcR3 and functions as a T cell costimulator Immunity. 2002 Mar; 16(3):479-92. View in: PubMed

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