Kan Cao

Associate Professor



Office Phone: 301.405.3016

Lab Phone: 301.405.3408 

Lab: 2219 Bioscience Research Building

Office Address: 2114 Bioscience Research Building

URL new:  http://www.caolab-umd.com/

Graduate Program Affiliations

  • BISI - BISI-Molecular & Cellular Biology (MOCB)

Research Interests

Hutchinson Gilford progeria syndrome, cellular senescence, alternative splicing and human aging

Recent Publications  (# Corresponding author, $ Graduate student, &Undergraduates) 



1.  Zhang H$, Sun L, Wang K$, Wu D$, Trappio M, Witting C& and Cao K# (2016). Loss of H3K9me3 Correlates with ATM Activation and Histone H2AX Phosphorylation Deficiencies in Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome. PLoS One. 2016 Dec 1;11(12):e0167454. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0167454. PMID: 27907109


2. Wu D$, Yates PA, Zhang H$ and Cao K# (2016). Comparing lamin proteins post-translational relative stability using a 2A peptide-based system reveals elevated resistance of progerin to cellular degradation. Nucleus (accepted).


3. Zhang H$ & Cao K# (2016). Mechanisms of genome instability in Hutchinson-Gilford progeria. Frontier Biology. doi:10.1007/s11515-016-1435-x



1. Xiong ZM, Choi JY$, Wang K$, Zhang H$, Tariq Z&, Wu D$, Ko E, LaDana C, Sesaki H and Cao K# (2015). Methylene blue alleviates nuclear and mitochondrial abnormalities in progeria Aging Cell.  Dec 14. doi: 10.1111/acel.12434.


2. Wang K$, Cao K and Hannenhalli S (2015). Chromatin and Genomic determinants of alternative splicing. ACM BCB’15 Proceedings of the International Conference on Bioinformatics,Computational Biology and Biomedical Informatics. (Accepted).


3. Wang K$, Sahu A, Xiong Z, Cao K# and Hannenhalli S# (2014). Phenotype-dependent coexpression gene clusters: application to normal and premature ageing. The IEEE IEEE/ACM Transactions on Computational Biology and Bioinformatics. Vol. 12, NO. 1. 2015, January/February.  



1. Wu D$, Flannery A, Cai H&, Ko E, and Cao K# (2014). Nuclear localization signal deletion mutants of lamin A and progerin reveal insights into lamin A processing and emerin targeting. Nucleus Feb 4; 5 (1).  (Highlighted on the cover)


2. Zhang H$, Xiong Z and Cao K# (2014). Mechenisms controlling smooth mucle cell death in progeria via downregulation of Ploy (ADP-ribose) polymerase. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 111(22) E2261-70.



1. Candia J, Maunu R, Driscoll M, Biancotto A, Dagur P, McCoy JP, Sen HN,Wei L, Maritan A, Cao K, Nussenblatt RB, Banavar JR, Losert W (2013) From Cellular Characteristics to Disease Diagnosis: Uncovering Phenotyps with Supercells. PLOS Computational Biology  9(9): e1003215. doi:10.1371/journal.pcbi.1003215.


2. Wang K$, Sahu A, Xiong Z, Cao K# and Hannenhalli S# (2013). Identification of gene clusters with phenotype dependant expression with application to normal and premature aging. ACM BCB’13 Proceedings of the International Conference on Bioinformatics, Computational Biology and Biomedical Informatics.


3. Xiong Z, LaDana C, Wu D$, and Cao K# (2013). An inhibitory role of progerin in the gene induction network of adipocyte differentiation from iPS cells. Aging April 5(4): 288-303.


4. McCord R, Nazario-Toole A$, Zhang H$, Chines P, Zhan Y, Erdos MR, Collins FS, Dekker J, and Cao K#. (2013) Correlated Alterations in Genome Organization, Histone Methylation, and DNA-Lamin A/C Interactions in Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria SyndromeGenome Research Feb; 23(2): 260-9. PMID: 23152449 


5. Zhang H$, Kieckhaefer JE, Cao K#. (2013) Mouse Models of Laminopathies. Aging Cell. pp1-9. DOI: 10.1111/acel.12021.PMID: 23095062



1. Gordon LB, Cao K, and Collins FS. (2012) Progeria: Translational Insights from Cell Biology. The Journal of Cell Biology, 199(1):9-13.PMID: 23027899


2. Cao K#. (2012) Cellular Basis of Laminopathies. Encyclopedia of Life Sciences (eLS). John Wiley & Sons, Ltd: Chichester. DOI: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0022533.


3. Driscoll MK$, Albanese J&, Xiong ZM, Mailman M, Losert W#, and Cao K#. (2012). A novel automated image analysis of nuclear shape: What can we learn from a prematurely aged cell? Aging, Vol. 4, No 2. PMID: 22354768


4. Graziotto J, Cao K, Collins FS, and Krainc D. (2012) Rapamycin activates autophagy in Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome: Implications for normal aging and age-dependent neurodegenerative disorders. Autophagy, 8(1).PMID: 22170152



1. Cao K, Blair CD, Faddah DA, Kieckhaefer JE, Olive M, Erdos MR, Nabel EG, and Collins FS. (2011) Lamin A and telomerase collaborate to trigger cellular senescence. Journal of Clinical Investigation121(7):2833-44.PMID: 21670498


2. Cao K*, Graziotto J*, Blair CD, Mazzulli JR, Erdos MR, Krainc D, and Collins FS. (2011) Rapamycin reverses cellular phenotype and enhances mutant protein clearance in Hutchinson Gilford progeria syndrome. Science Translational Medicine, 29;3(89):89ra58. (*: Equal contributors).PMID: 21715679


Before 2010

1. Olive M, Harten I, Mitchell R, Beers J, Djabali K, Cao K, Erdos MR, Blair C, Funke B, Smoot L, Gerhard-Herman M, Machan JT, Kutys R, Virmani R, Collins FS, Wight TN, Nabel EG, Gordon LB. (2010) Cardiovascular Pathology in Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria: Correlation With the Vascular Pathology of Aging. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol., 30:2301.PMID: 20798379


2. Capell BC, Olive M, Erdos MR, Cao K, Faddah DA, Whipperman M, Conneely KN, Qu X, San H, Ganesh SK, Chen X, Kolodgie KD, Virmani R, Nabel EG, Collins FS. (2009) A farnesyltransferase inhibitor prevents both the onset and late progression of cardiovascular disease in a progeria mouse model. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 105(41):15902-7. PMID: 18838683


3. Cao K, Capell BC, Erdos MR, Djabali K, and Collins FS. (2007) A lamin A protein isoform overexpressed in Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome interferes with mitosis in progeria and normal cells. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 104(12) 4949-4954.PMID: 17360355


4. Vong QP*, Cao K*, Li HY, Iglesias PA, Zheng Y. (2005). Chromosome alignment and segregation regulated by ubiquitination of survivin. Science310(5753): 1499-504. (*:Equal contributors).


5. Cao K and Zheng Y. (2004). The Cdc48/p97-Ufd1-Npl4 Complex: Its Potential Role in Coordinating Cellular Morphogenesis During the M-G (1) Transition. Cell Cycle, 3:422-424.


6. Cao K, Nakajima R, Meyer HH, Zheng Y. (2003). The AAA-ATPase Cdc48/p97 Regulates Spindle Disassembly at the End of Mitosis. Cell115:355-367. 


7. Li HY*, Cao K*, Zheng Y. (2003). Ran in the Spindle Checkpoint: A New Function for A Versatile GTPase. Trends in Cell Biology, 13:553-557. (*: Equal contributors).


8. Tsai MY, Wiese C, Cao K, Martin O, Donovan P, Ruderman J, Prigent C, Zheng Y. (2003) A Ran Signaling Pathway Mediated by the Mitotic Kinase Aurora A in Spindle Assembly. Nature Cell Biology, 5:242-248.


9. Gunawardane R, Martin O, Cao K, Zhang L, Dej K, Iwamatsu A, and Zheng Y. (2000) Characterization and Reconstitution of Drosophila gamma-Tubulin Ring Complex Subunits. The Journal of Cell Biology, 151:1513-23.



BSCI330: Spring Semester

CBMG668: Fall Semester




Ph. D. Johns Hopkins University, 2005