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Dr. Xuecai (Susan) Ge
Assistant Professor
Molecular and Cell Biology, School of Natural Sciences
University of California, Merced



Cells use the primary cilium, a hair-like organelle, to communicate with each other. This miniature cell surface projection acts like the radio antenna to tune the cell, by expressing different receptors that determine what signals the cell will receive. Mutations affecting ciliary signaling cause ciliopathies, a wide spectrum of human diseases. Research in our lab focuses on the primary cilia in the neural progenitors in the developing brain. We aim to decipher the differential expression of receptors and signaling transducers in the primary cilia during embryonic development, and how these signaling molecules control brain formation over space and time. We harness diverse
approaches, ranging from cell culture, quantitative proteomics, genetic mouse model to advanced imaging tools to investigate how cilia control cell signaling in a spatiotemporal specific manner.



Dr. Xuecai Ge is an assistant professor in the department of Molecular and Cell Biology at
UC Merced. She studied embryonic neurogenesis as a graduate student at Harvard
University, where her work revealed how human mutations in psychiatric disorders impact neuronal production in the brain. Her postdoctoral research at Stanford focuses on the regulation of Hedgehog signaling, the first signaling pathway found to rely on the
primary cilium. At UC Merced, her lab studies the fundamental mechanisms underlying neurodevelopment and how cell signaling errors lead to developmental disorders, such as birth defects and pediatric brain tumor. Research results from her lab provide unique
insights into cell signaling regulation.

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