Nan Gao

Nan Gao


ngao [at]



Office Location

401A Life Sciences Building

Office Hours

Fridays 12-1 PM

Research in Dr. Gao's laboratory studies how human gut microbiome communicates with our body, and how such communications influence our health and disease. The topics of current research project include: 

  • How intestinal cells respond to commensal and pathogenic bacteria
  • The cellular machinery that regulates the host-microbiome communications
  • Factors that affect host susceptibility to inflammation and cancer

Courses Taught

Molecular Biology of Eukaryotes (120:515)

Biology of Cancer (120:402)


Ph.D., Vanderbilt University, 2004.


  1. Sakamori R, Das S, Yu S, Feng S, Stypulkowski E, Guan Y, Douard V, Tang W, Ferraris RP, Harada A, Brakebusch C, Guo W, Gao N. Cdc42 and Rab8a are critical for intestinal stem cell division, survival, and differentiation in mice. J Clin Invest. 2012 Mar;122(3):1052-65. doi: 10.1172/JCI60282. Epub 2012 Feb 22. PMID: 22354172; PMCID: PMC3287229.
  2. Sakamori R, Yu S, Zhang X, Hoffman A, Sun J, Das S, Vedula P, Li G, Fu J, Walker F, Yang CS, Yi Z, Hsu W, Yu DH, Shen L, Rodriguez AJ, Taketo MM, Bonder EM, Verzi MP, Gao N. CDC42 inhibition suppresses progression of incipient intestinal tumors. Cancer Res. 2014 Oct 1;74(19):5480-92. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-14-0267. Epub 2014 Aug 11. PMID: 25113996; PMCID: PMC4184946.
  3. Yu S, Tong K, Zhao Y, Balasubramanian I, Yap GS, Ferraris RP, Bonder EM, Verzi MP, Gao N. Paneth Cell Multipotency Induced by Notch Activation following Injury. Cell Stem Cell. 2018 Jul 5;23(1):46-59.e5. doi: 10.1016/j.stem.2018.05.002. Epub 2018 Jun 7. PMID: 29887318; PMCID: PMC6035085.
  4. Lee YS, Kim TY, Kim Y, Lee SH, Kim S, Kang SW, Yang JY, Baek IJ, Sung YH, Park YY, Hwang SW, O E, Kim KS, Liu S, Kamada N, Gao N, Kweon MN. Microbiota-Derived Lactate Accelerates Intestinal Stem-Cell-Mediated Epithelial Development. Cell Host Microbe. 2018 Dec 12;24(6):833-846.e6. doi: 10.1016/j.chom.2018.11.002. PMID: 30543778.
  5. Ladinsky MS, Araujo LP, Zhang X, Veltri J, Galan-Diez M, Soualhi S, Lee C, Irie K, Pinker EY, Narushima S, Bandyopadhyay S, Nagayama M, Elhenawy W, Coombes BK, Ferraris RP, Honda K, Iliev ID, Gao N, Bjorkman PJ, Ivanov II. Endocytosis of commensal antigens by intestinal epithelial cells regulates mucosal T cell homeostasis. Science. 2019 Mar 8;363(6431):eaat4042. doi: 10.1126/science.aat4042. PMID: 30846568; PMCID: PMC6708280.
  6. D'Agostino L, Nie Y, Goswami S, Tong K, Yu S, Bandyopadhyay S, Flores J, Zhang X, Balasubramanian I, Joseph I, Sakamori R, Farrell V, Li Q, Yang CS, Gao B, Ferraris RP, Yehia G, Bonder EM, Goldenring JR, Verzi MP, Zhang L, Ip YT, Gao N. Recycling Endosomes in Mature Epithelia Restrain Tumorigenic Signaling. Cancer Res. 2019 Aug 15;79(16):4099-4112. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-18-4075. Epub 2019 Jun 25. PMID: 31239271; PMCID: PMC6726494.
  7. Yu S, Balasubramanian I, Laubitz D, Tong K, Bandyopadhyay S, Lin X, Flores J, Singh R, Liu Y, Macazana C, Zhao Y, Béguet-Crespel F, Patil K, Midura-Kiela MT, Wang D, Yap GS, Ferraris RP, Wei Z, Bonder EM, Häggblom MM, Zhang L, Douard V, Verzi MP, Cadwell K, Kiela PR, Gao N. Paneth Cell-Derived Lysozyme Defines the Composition of Mucolytic Microbiota and the Inflammatory Tone of the Intestine. Immunity. 2020 Aug 18;53(2):398-416.e8. doi: 10.1016/j.immuni.2020.07.010. PMID:32814028; PMCID: PMC7461615.
  8. Zhang X, Bandyopadhyay S, Araujo LP, Tong K, Flores J, Laubitz D, Zhao Y, Yap G, Wang J, Zou Q, Ferraris R, Zhang L, Hu W, Bonder EM, Kiela PR, Coffey R, Verzi MP, Ivanov II, Gao N. Elevating EGFR-MAPK program by a nonconventional Cdc42 enhances intestinal epithelial survival and regeneration. JCI Insight. 2020 Aug 20;5(16):e135923. doi:  0.1172/jci.insight.135923. PMID: 32686657; PMCID: PMC7455142.