Hairong Wei

Hairong Wei
"We are doing excellent job in describing how an individual gene functions, but not how life functions. Systems biology is to fill this gap."


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  • Professor, SFRES
  • Affiliated Professor, Mathematical Sciences
  • Affiliated Professor, Computer Science
  • PhD, Plant Molecular Biology, University of Hawaii at Manoa
  • MS, Computer Science, University of Chicago
  • MS, Forest Genetics, Beijing Forestry University
  • BS, Agricultural Sciences, Beijing Forestry University

Yes, we can.

I am exploring the possibility of identifying genes regulating biological traits via systems biology approaches. We achieve this goal through combinatorial approaches: (1) Designing very efficient biological experiments to yield information-enriched gene expression data sets. (2) Performing gene reduction to identify major regulators controlling traits via complex data analysis. (3) Construction of local regulatory networks controlling a trait. We have developed the algorithms and software pipelines for accurately identifying transcription factors controlling a trait with 50-100 % accuracy. I am in general interested in identifying genes regulating the following traits: (1) Wood productivity and quality. (2) Resistance to disease and pest. (3) Biomass production. However, identification of genes regulating any of agriculturally important traits interests me.

Areas of Expertise

  • Identification of genes regulating complex traits via systems biology approaches
  • Gene expression data analysis
  • Gene network construction and decomposition
  • Developing software for mining large-scale biological data
  • Genomics of wood formation