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About the PI

  Dr. Pengda Liu, PhD

Associate Professor, Biochemistry and Biophysics

Pengda Liu received his Bachelors’ degree in Bioengineering (B.E.) from Hefei University of Technology and Ph.D. degree in IDPBS (Interdisciplinary Program of Biological Sciences) from East Carolina University. During his Ph.D. training, he focused on deciphering the phosphorylation code of the eukaryotic RNA polymerase II Rpb1 C-terminal domain (CTD), where he identified the sequence elements and patterns required for CTD function in budding yeast. Afterwards, he joined Dr. Arno Greenleaf lab at Duke University Medical Center for a short postdoc-training to continue his research on CTD-where he co-first authored the first paper to characterize CDK12 and CDK13 as mammalian CTD kinases regulating transcription elongation. In 2010, he joined Dr. Wenyi Wei’s lab at BIDMC, Harvard Medical School to extend his training using mammalian systems. He continued his interests in protein kinases in Wenyi’s lab and identified multiple regulatory signaling events for the oncogenic PI3K/mTOR/Akt signaling, including a cell cycle dependent Akt activation mechanism in various cancers. In addition, he started to develop his interests and expertise in ubiquitin signaling during this period. In 2016, Pengda initiated his independent lab in Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In 2022, he was promoted to tenure-track Associate Professor.

Lab Members