Yingzi Cong, PhD

Yingzi Cong, PhD
Samuel Baron Distinguished Professor
Director, Sealy Center for Microbiome Research
Professor, Deparment of Microbiology and Immunology

Phone: (409)772-4902
Fax: (409) 772-5065


Visiting PhD Student, 1988-1990, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston, MA
PhD, 1990, Shandong University, P.R. China
MSc, 1985, Shandong University, P.R. China
BSc, 1982, Shandong University, P.R. China


Mucosal immunology, host-microbiota interaction at mucosal surface, and pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel diseases

Research Interests

The host and microbiota have evolved mechanisms for coexistence over millions of years. Accumulating evidence indicates that a dynamic mutualism between the host and the commensal microbiota has important implications for health, and microbial colonization contributes to the maintenance of intestinal immune homeostasis. However, alterations in communication between the mucosal immune system and gut microbial communities have been implicated as the core defect that leads to development of chronic intestinal inflammation and cancer as well as other diseases, such as diabetes, obesity etc. Dr. Yingzi Cong’s basic research programs focus on investigating host immune system, microbiome interaction in the intestines, pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease, and development of mucosal vaccines, which are based on the analysis of unique murine models of inflammatory bowel disease using a battery of reagents that have been developed recently. A number of research projects are underway in his laboratory and these NIH funded studies involve a number of significant collaborations both at UTMB as well as with other Universities and Research Institutes. Specifically, individual projects include:

  1. The role of T cells reactive to commensal bacterial antigens in mucosal immunity and pathogenesis of IBD.
  2. Gut microbiome and its metabolites regulation of host immune responses and experimental colitis.
  3. microRNA regulation of host response to commensal bacteria and pathogenesis of IBD.
  4. Regulation of intestinal IgA response to microbiota and pathogens
  5. Development of mucosal vaccines

Recent Publications

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