Center for Plant Cell Biology


Hailing JinHailing Jin

Professor & Cy Mouradick Endowed Chair

Mailing Address:

Plant Pathology and Microbiology
Genomics Building /3234B
University of California
Riverside, CA 92521

Phone: (951) 827-7995

Email: hailingj@ucr.edu


PhD 1996 Shanghai Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology

College/Division Affiliation:

College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences

Center/Inst Affiliation(s):

Center for Plant Cell Biology

Areas Of Expertise:

Small RNA-mediated Gene Regulation; Plant Immunity

Awards / Honors:

Cy Mouradick Endowed Chair, 2016
Elected Fellow of American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2015
UC President's Endowed Chair, 2015
NSF Career Award, 2007-2013
Academic Senate Omnibus Research Award, 2005, 2007, 2009
Regents’ Faculty Development Award, 2004, 2006
NSF Travel Award, Keystone Symposia, 2002
EMBO Fellowship, European Molecular Biology Organization, 1999
Excellent Performance Award, John Innes Center, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, UK, 1997
Beckman Excellent Ph.D. Dissertation Award, Beckman Instruments, Inc., China Office, 1995
Outstanding Graduate Student Award, Shanghai Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1992 and 1995

Research Summary:


Jin Research


My lab studies the molecular mechanisms of plant immunity and pathogen virulence, with an overall goal to develop effective and environmentally friendly strategies to control plant diseases and to ensure sufficient food production.  

Our research projects include:

  • Small RNAs and Cross-Kingdom RNAi in Plant - Pathogen Interactions

Small RNAs, including microRNAs (miRNAs) and small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), are important regulators of 
eukaryotic gene expression by guiding mRNA cleavage, translational 
inhibition or chromatin modification. We utilize genomics, genetics, molecular and biochemical approaches to identify and functionally characterize infection-regulated small RNAs, including those from plant hosts and from eukaryotic pathogens. My lab provided the first example of a plant endogenous siRNA that regulates plant immune responses. We further discovered that
some small RNAs from aggressive fungal pathogens are delivered into host cells to hijack host RNAi machinery to suppress host immunity genes. These studies have added small RNAs to the list of pathogen effectors, which unveiled a novel virulence mechanism in aggressive eukaryotic pathogens. The transport of small RNAs from fungal pathogens to plant hosts also represents a naturally occurring cross-kingdom RNAi event. We recently show that such cross-kingdom RNAi is bi-directional, plants are also capable of delivery small RNAs into fungal pathogens to attenuate their virulence. 

  • Regulatory mechanisms of RNAi machinery in plant - pathogen interactions

My lab also studies the function and regulation of RNAi pathway components, mostly Argonaute (AGO) proteins in plant immunity. AGO proteins are the core components of RNAi complexes, which selectively bind with small RNAs and silence target genes with complementary sequences. We discovered that Arabidopsis AGO2 positively regulates antibacterial immunity by associating with miR393*, which targets a Golgi-localized SNARE gene MEMB12 and leads to increased secretion of antimicrobial peptide and confers resistance. Since miR393 also contributes to antibacterial immunity by suppressing auxin receptors, miR393*/miR393 represent a novel example of a miRNA*/miRNA pair that functions in the same cellular pathway (host immunity) through two distinct AGOs. We further demonstrated that small RNA duplex structures and AGO PIWI domain contribute to the selective loading of small RNAs in different AGO proteins, AGO1 and AGO2. We currently focus on the regulation and modification of AGO proteins in responses to pathogen attacks.

  • Epigenetic regulation of plant immune responses 

Surveillance of pathogen infection is mediated by intracellular NOD-like nucleotide-binding/leucine-rich-repeat receptors (NLRs) in both plants and animals. We recently discovered that some NBS-LRR genes, are under the control of specific plant chromatin remodeling proteins, as well as RNA-directed DNA methylation (RdDM) pathway. Such epigenetic regulation ensures precise expression of these resistance genes to avoid autoimmune responses or disease.

Further information and specific research projects can be found on the lab website: https://sites.google.com/a/ucr.edu/dr-hailing-jin-s-laboratory/home


Selected Publications:

Publications from PubMed


Books Edited:

  1. Olga Pontes and Hailing Jin (Co-editors): Nuclear Functions in Plant Transcription and Signaling. Published by Springer, ISBN 978-1-4939-2385-4, 275 P., 18 Illus. in color., 2015.
  2. Hailing Jin & Walter Gassmann (Co-editors): RNA Abundance Analysis, a new volume for the "Methods in Molecular Biology" book series, published by Humana Press, USA. 2012. 

Book Chapters:

  1. Chellappan Padmanabhan and Hailing Jin: Host endogenous small RNAs regulate plant innate immunity. Biology of Molecular Plant-Microbe InteractionsVolume 7. 2010.
  2. Hailing Jin: Viral systemic movement and plant vascular development. Biology of Plant-Microbe InteractionsVolume 5. Published by International Society for Molecular-Microbe Interactions. St. Paul, Minnesota, USA. 2006, p423-426.
  3. Cathie Martin, Hailing Jin, Kathy Schwinn: Chapter Eight: Mechanisms and applications of transcriptional control of phenylpropanoid metabolism. Recent Advances in Phytochemistry, 2001, 35:155-169.


Lab Personnel:

Hu, Po
Postdoctoral Researcher —
Wang, Ming
Postdoctoral Researcher —
Huang, Chien-Yu
Postdoctoral Researcher —
Cai, Qiang
Postdoctoral Researcher —
Lii, Yifan
Postdoctoral Researcher —
Qiao, Lulu
Visiting PhD Graduate Student —
He, Baoye
Postdoctoral Researcher —
Thomas, Nicholas
Postdoctoral Researcher —
Palmquist, Jared; Pai, Alice; Wong, Elton; Durbin-Henderson, Nicole; Kelley, Jr., Eric
Undergraduate Student Researchers —
Jin Lab 2008
 Jin Lab 2008
Jin Lab 2010
Jin Lab 2010
                                                       Jin Lab 2016                                                                            
Jin Lab Photo 2016  

More Information

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

Career OpportunitiesUCR Libraries
Campus StatusDirections to UCR

Center Information

Center for Plant Cell Biology
Botany & Plant Sciences Department
2150 Batchelor Hall

Tel: (951) 827-7177
Fax: (951) 827-5155
E-mail: genomics@ucr.edu