Full time faculty

Adjunct professor

Chair professor


Chunlai Chen

Chunlai Chen, Ph.D.

Principal Investigator



1999-2003    B.Sc.     Peking University

2003-2008    Ph.D.     Peking University

2008-2015    Postdoc/Research Specialist     University of Pennsylvania

2015-now     Principal Investigator        School of Life Sciences; Tsinghua-Peking Joint Center for Life Sciences; Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Structural Biology, Tsinghua University


Research Area:

1) Develop cutting-edge single molecule fluorescence methods and techniques.

2) Molecular mechanisms of CRISPR proteins in target searching and cleavage.

3) Molecular mechanisms of the ribosome and associated proteins during protein synthesis.


Selected Publications:

1.      Mengyi Yang(#), Sijia Peng(#), Ruirui Sun, Jingdi Lin, Nan Wang, and Chunlai Chen(*), (2018) The Conformational Dynamics of Cas9 Governing DNA Cleavage Are Revealed by Single-Molecule FRET, Cell Reports, 22(2): 372-382

2.      Sijia Peng, Ruirui Sun, Wenjuan Wang and Chunlai Chen(*), (2017) Single-Molecule Photoactivation FRET: A General and Easy-to-Implement Approach to Break the Concentration Barrier, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed, 56(24):6882-6885

3.      Sijia Peng, Wenjuan Wang (*) and Chunlai Chen(*), (2017) Breaking the concentration barrier for single molecule fluorescence measurements, Chemistry - A European Journal, Oct 17. doi: 10.1002/chem.201704065 (Concept)

4.      Sijia Peng, Mengyi Yang, Rui Ning Sun, Yang Liu, Wenjuan Wang, Qiaoran Xi, Haipeng Gong, and Chunlai Chen(*), (2017) Mechanism of actions of Oncocin, a proline-rich antimicrobial peptide, in early elongation revealed by single-molecule FRET, Protein & Cell, doi: 10.1007/s13238-017-0495-2

5.      Sijia Peng, Ruirui Sun, Wenjuan Wang, and Chunlai Chen(*), (2017) Single-molecule FRET studies on interactions between elongation factor 4 (LepA) and ribosomes, Chinese Chemical Letters, doi: 10.1016/j.cclet.2017.12.006

6.      Shan Sun, Lin Li, Fan Yang, Xiaojing Wang, Fenghui Fan, Mengyi Yang, Chunlai Chen, Xueming Li, Hong-Wei Wang, Sen-Fang Sui (*), (2017) Cryo-EM structures of the ATP-bound Vps4E233Q hexamer and its complex with Vta1 at near-atomic resolution, Nature Communications, Jul 17;8:16064

7.      Chunlai Chen, Xiaonan Cui, John F. Beausang, Haibo Zhang, Ian Farrell, Barry S. Cooperman (*), and Yale E. Goldman (*), (2016) Elongation factor G initiates translocation through a power stroke, PNAS, 113(27):7515-20

8.      Chunlai Chen, Haibo Zhang, Steven L. Broitman, Michael Reiche, Ian Farrell, Barry S. Cooperman(*), and Yale E. Goldman(*), (2013) Dynamics of translation by single ribosomes through mRNA secondary structures, Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, 20, 582-588.

9.      Chunlai Chen, Benjamin Stevens, Jaskiran Kaur, Zeev Smilansky, Barry S. Cooperman(*), and Yale E. Goldman(*), (2011) Allosteric vs. Spontaneous E-site tRNA Dissociation Early in Protein Synthesis, PNAS, 108, 16980-16985.

10.   Chunlai Chen, Benjamin Stevens, Jaskiran Kaur, Diana Cabral, Hanqing Liu, Yuhong Wang, Haibo Zhang, Gabriel Rosenblum, Zeev Smilansky, Yale E. Goldman(*), and Barry S. Cooperman(*), (2011) Single Molecule Fluorescence Measurements of Ribosomal Translocation Dynamics. Molecular Cell, 42, 367-377.



E-mail: chunlai@biomed.tsinghua.edu.cn


Tsinghua University,Beijing,China,100084
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