Ping Zhang, Ph.D.

Ping Zhang, Ph.D.
NIH Stadtman Investigator

My laboratory studies the structural and mechanistic basis of kinases that are closely related to human cancers and many other diseases. Our main focus is on oncogenic kinases including BRAF, Leucine Rich Repeat Kinase and PKA.  We apply a combination of biochemical and structural (single-particle cryo-electron microscopy and X-ray crystallography) approaches to reveal the molecular mechanisms of such multi-component biological complexes and help to provide new strategies for therapeutic targeting.

Areas of Expertise

1) kinase, 2) cell signaling, 3) cancer biology, 4) structural biology

Contact Info

Ping Zhang, Ph.D.
Center for Cancer Research
National Cancer Institute
Bldg. 538/Room 118
Frederick, MD 21701
Ph: 301-228-4092

We apply interdisciplinary approaches spanning many fields such as cryoEM, X-ray crystallography, solution methods, biochemistry, and cell signaling, etc. We aim to combine structural and functional studies to reveal the molecular mechanism of kinase complexes' dysfunction and help develop novel reagents that may eventually lead to a cure for cancer and other diseases.

NIH Scientific Focus Areas:
Biomedical Engineering and Biophysics, Cancer Biology, Molecular Biology and Biochemistry, Structural Biology
  1. Lu TW, Wu J, Aoto PC, Weng JH, Ahuja LG, Sun N, Cheng CY, Zhang P, Taylor SS.
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 116(33): 16347-56, 2019. [ Journal Article ]
  2. Zhou BR, Yadav KNS, Borgnia M, Hong J, Cao B, Olins AL, Olins DE, Bai Y, Zhang P.
    Nat Commun. 10(1): 2301, 2019. [ Journal Article ]
  3. Cao B, Lu TW, Martinez Fiesco JA, Tomasini M, Fan L, Simon SM, Taylor SS, Zhang P.
    Structure. 27(5): 816-28, 2019. [ Journal Article ]
  4. Zhou BR, Jiang J, Ghirlando R, Norouzi D, Sathish Yadav KN, Feng H, Wang R, Zhang P, Zhurkin V, Bai Y.
    J Mol Biol. 430(18 Pt B): 3093-3110, 2018. [ Journal Article ]
  5. Zhang P, Knape MJ, Ahuja L, Keshwani MM, King CC, Sastri M, Herberg FW, and Taylor, SS.
    PLoS Biol. 13(7): e1002192, 2015. [ Journal Article ]

Dr. Zhang received her Ph.D. training in Dr. Michael Rossmann’s lab at Purdue University in the field of biochemistry and structural virology.  Her Ph.D. project was resolving the structures of poliovirus-receptor complexes using X-ray crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM).  She completed her postdoctoral training in Dr. Susan Taylor’s laboratory at UCSD, working on a signal transduction system related to human diseases and learning other techniques in structural biology and cell signaling that are suited for studying dynamic signaling complexes. She joined the Structural Biophysics Laboratory at NCI as a Stadtman Tenure Track Investigator in August 2016.

Name Position
Ning Li Ph.D. Research Fellow
Juliana Andrea Martinez Fiesco Ph.D. Postdoctoral Fellow (Visiting)
Satish Yadav Postdoctoral Fellow 2016-2018

Current position: Scientist, University of Bristol

Baohua Cao Postdoctoral Fellow 2016-2019

Current position: Scientist, Novartis, China

Jenny England Postdoctoral Fellow 2019

Current position: Scientist, Thermal Fisher, Boston