Department of Biological Sciences

Dodge Hall Rm 375
118 Library Dr
Rochester, MI 48309-4479
(location map)
(248) 370-3550
fax: (248) 370-4225


Zijuan Liu

Zijuan Liu
Associate Professor, Ph.D.
303 MSC
(248) 370-3554
Lab location: 316 MSC
Lab phone: (248) 370-4904

Liu lab website 


BIO 3210 Cell Biology Lab
BIO 4210/5252  Molecular Biology


Trace elements play essential roles in human health. Imbalances in their concentrations or metabolism have been implied in many diseases. Dr. Liu’s lab focuses on the membrane transporters that facilitate the cellular access of beneficial trace elements including zinc, copper, manganese and selenium, and also toxic cadmium and arsenic.

The overall goal is to elucidate the correlations between trace elements homeostasis and common human diseases, such as alcohol and non-alcohol fatty liver disease (AFLD and NAFLD). Results will help to better understand the beneficial, or adverse effects, of trace elements and provide strategies for clinical applications in the prevention and treatment of complicated diseases.

Selected Publications:

Geng*, X., L. Liu*, K.J. Tsai and Z. Liu. (2019). Role of AIP8 in regulation of cisplatin sensitivity through Bcl-2. Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology 362: 52-58. DOI:

Geng*, X., L. Liu*, A.B. Banes-Berceli, Z. Yang, P. Kang, J. Shen, J.J. Tsai and Z. Liu. (2018). Role of ZIP8 in regulating cell morphology and NF-κB/Snail2 signaling. Metallomics 7:953-964. DOI: 10.1039/C8MT00079D.

McDermott*, J.R., X. Geng*, L. Jiang, M. Gálvez-Peralta, F. Chen, D.W. Nebert and Z. Liu. (2016). Zinc-and bicarbonate-dependent ZIO8 transporter mediates selenite uptake. Oncotarget 7(23): 35327-40. DOI: 10.18632/oncotarget.9205.

Liu*, L., X. Geng*, B. Copple, M. Yoshinaga, J. Shen, D.W. Nebert and Z. Liu. (2018). Hepatic ZIP8 deficiency is associated with disrupted selenium homeostasis, liver pathology and tumor formation. American Journal of Physiology-Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology 315(4): G569-G579. DOI: 10.1152/ajpgi.00165.2018.

Chen, J., M. Gálvez-Peralta, X. Zhang, J. Deng, Z. Liu and D. W. Nebert. (2018). In utero gene expression in the SLC39a8(neo/neo) knockdown mouse. Scientific Reports 16:8 10703. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-29109-y.

Geng*, X., J. McDermott*, J. Lundgren, L. Liu, K. Tsai, J. Shen and Z. Liu. (2017). Role of AQP9 in transport of monomethyselenic acid and selenite. Biometals 30(5):747-755. DOI: 10.1007/s10534-017-0042-x

Duan, G.L., Y. Hu, S. Schneider, J.R. McDermott, J. Chen, N. Sauer, B.P. Rosen, B. Daus, Z. Liu and Y.G. Zhu. (2015). Inositol transporters AtlNT2 and AtlINT4 regulate arsenic accumulation in Arabidopsis seed. Nature Plants 2(1):15202 DOI: 10.1038/nplants.2015.202.

McDermott*, J.R., B.P. Rosen and Z. Liu. (2012). Jen1p: A high affinity selenite transporter in yeast. Molecular Biology of the Cell 22: 3934-41. DOI: 10.1091/mbc.E10-06-0513.

*OU student