NInstitute of Oceanology,Chinese Academy of Sciences
TAN XunGang


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Name:  Xungang  Tan

TitleAssociate professor

Key Laboratory of Experimental Marine Biology,

Institute of Oceanology,Chinese Academy of Sciences.

Research Field: Marine Biology, Developmental Biology



2008.9-   present   Associated Professor, Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. P.R.China.

2003.12- 2008.8    Assistant Professor, Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences. P.R.China.

2000.8-2003.6 Visiting Scholar, Center of Marine Biotechnology, University of    Maryland   Biotechnology Institute, USA.



Ph.D.2003. in Marine Biology. 

         Major in Developmental Biology.

         Institute of Oceanology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, P.R China

M.S.1999. in Fermentation Engineering.

         School of Life Sciences, Shandong University.P.R.China.

B.S. 1996. in Microbology.

Department of Microbolgy, Shandong University, P.R.China.


Research Interests:

Muscle is specialized tissue that makes up the muscle system that confers multiple mechanical and biological functions. The important function of muscle system can be easily recognized in day-to-day life. Also, the skeletal muscle of fish is important food for human. The better understanding of the regulation of muscle formation will provide new insights into the molecular mechanisms of muscle diseases and give rise to novel strategies for new drug design as well as alternative therapeutic approach using embryonic stem cells. At the same time, the knowledge can give us more clues how to culture the fish to give us more high quality and quantity food.


The research object of my work is marine flatfish such as olive flounder, zebrafish and amphioxus. We are trying to explore the mechanism of muscle development in flounder, which might be different from that of zebrafish for it can grow so bigger than the zebrafish. The results will help us to select fast growth fish or increase their growth through manual control. Zebrafish is used as a model system to identify the genetic program involved in muscle formation, and knockout methods (such as TALNEs or CRISP/Cas9) will be used to build the muscle disease model or muscle growth model in zebrafish. Aslo, the evolution of genome and function of muscle-related genes will be explained by using amphioxus. Furthermore, we are developing gene manipulation methods such as transgene in marine fish, which might be used for gene modification in the future.


Selected Publications:

1.         Jiao S, Tan X*,Wang Q, Li M, Du SJ. The olive flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) Pax3 homologues are highly conserved, encode multiple isoforms and show unique expression patterns,Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology, Part B. 2015,180:7–15.

2.         Hu J,You F*, Wang Q, Weng S, Liu H, Wang L, Zhang P-J,Tan X*. Transcriptional Responses of Olive Flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) to Low Temperature. PLoS One. 2014, 9(10):e108582.

3.         Du SJ*, Tan X, Zhang J. SMYD Proteins: Key Regulators in Skeletal and Cardiac Muscle Development and Function. The Anatomical Record Advances in Integrative Anatomy and Evolutionary Biology. 2014, 297(9):1650-62.

4.         Fan Z, You F, Wang L, Weng S, Wu Z, Hu J,Zou Y, Tan X, Zhang P-J. Gonadal Transcriptome Analysis of Male and Female Olive Flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus). BioMed Research International 2014, 291067

5.         Bai Y#, Tan X#, Zhang H#, Liu C, Zhao B, Li Y, Lu L, Liu Y, Zhou J*. Ror2 receptor mediates Wnt11 ligand signaling and affects convergence and extension movements in zebrafish. J Biol Chem. 2014; 289(30): 20664-20676Co-Author

6.         Wang Q, Tan X*, Jiao S, You F, Zhang P-J Analyzing cold tolerance mechanism in transgenic zebrafish (Danio rerio). PLoS ONE , 2014, 9(7): e102492.

7.         Zhang Y.,Tan X*, Sun W., Xu P., Zhang P-J.,Xu Y. Characterization of flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) FoxD3 and its function in regulating myogenic regulatory factors. In Vitro Cell.Dev.Biol.-Animal (2011) 47:399–405

8.         Xu P, Tan X*, Zhang Y, Zhang P-J,Xu Y. Cloning and Expression Analysis of myogenin from Flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) and Promoter Analysis of Muscle-Specific Expression. Comp Biochem Physiol Part B. 2007; 147(1): 135-45.

9.         Xing F, Tan X*, et al. Characterization of amphioxus GDF8/11 gene, an archetype of vertebrate MSTN and GDF11. Dev Genes Evol. 2007, 217(7):549-54.

10.     Du SJ, Rotllant J, Tan X. Muscle-specific expression of the smyd1 gene is controlled by its 5.3-kb promoter and 5'-flanking sequence in zebrafish embryos. Dev Dyn.2006, 235(12): 3306 -3315.

11.     Tan X#, Rotllant J, Li H, DeDeyne P, and Du SJ*,#. SmyD1, a histone methyltransferase, is required for myofibril organization and muscle contraction in zebrafish embryos. PNAS. 2006, 103(8): 2713–2718. Co-Author

12.     Tan X, Zhang Y,Zhang P-J,Xu P, Xu Y. Molecular structure and expression patterns of flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) Myf-5, a myogenic regulatory factor. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology, Part B. 2006, 145:204–213.

13.     Zhang Y, Tan X, Zhang P-J,Xu Y. Characterization of Muscle-Regulatory Gene, MyoD, from Flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) and Analysis of Its Expression Patterns During Embryogenesis.Mari Biotechnology.2006,8:139-148.

14.     Tan X, Du SJ.  Differential expression of two MyoD genes in fast and slow muscles of gilthead seabream (Sparus aurata). Dev Genes Evol. 2002,212 (5): 207-17.

15.     Tan X, Hong L and Du SJ. Characterization of Muscle-Regulatory Genes, Myf-5 and Myogenin, from Striped Bass and Promoter Analysis of Muscle-Specific Expression. Mar.Biotechnol. 2002, 4:537-545.


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