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Jianhang Jia, PhD

Cancer Center Member

jianhang jia

Research Programs:

Faculty Rank:

Research Focus

The goal of our research is to understand the molecular mechanisms of Hedgehog (Hh) signal transduction and the roles of Hh signaling components in development and cancer. We focus on the regulation of Smoothened (Smo), a seven-span transmembrane protein required for transduction of the Hh signal in cells exposed to the Hh ligand. We have been investigating novel mechanisms that are critical in mediating the activation of Smo.

Contact Information

760 Press Avenue
Research Building 2, Room 324
Lexington, KY 40536-0679
United States



  1. Hedgehog-regulated atypical PKC promotes phosphorylation and activation of Smoothened and Cubitus interruptus in Drosophila. Jiang K, Liu, Y, Fan J, Epperly G, Gap T, Jiang J, and Jia J. (2014) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 111(45): E4842-50, Epub 2014 Oct 27. PMCID: PMC4234617
  2. PI(4)P promotes phosphorylation and conformational change of Smoothened through interaction with its C-terminal tail. Jiang K, Fan J, Liu Y, Zhang J, Li XA, Evers BM, Zhu H, and Jia J. (2016) PLoS Biol 14(2): e1002375. PMCID: PMC4749301
  3. An obligatory role for neurotensin in high-fat-diet-induced obesity. Li J, Song J, Zaytseva YY, Liu Y, Rychahou P, Jiang K, Starr ME, Kim JT, Harris JW, Yiannikouris FB, Katz WS, Nilsson PM, Orho-Melander M, Chen J, Zhu H, Fahrenholz T, Higashi RM, Gao T, Morris AJ, Cassis LA, Fan TWM, Weiss HL, Dobner PR, Melander O, Jia J†, Evers BM†. (2016) Nature 533(7603): 411-5. (†Senior co-authors jointly supervised this work). PMCID: 5484414 (pertinent to the current application)
  4. An intracellular activation of Smoothened that is independent of Hedgehog stimulation in Drosophila. Jiang K, Liu Y, Zhang J, and Jia J. (2018) J Cell Sci 131(1): jcs211367. PMCID: PMC5818065