Kui Liu - Professor
Studies of Signals and Molecules Involved in Physiological and Pathological Processes of the Ovary
The mammalian ovary is a heterogenous organ consisting of follicles and copora lutea at various stages of development. Menopause takes place when the pool of ovarian follicles has been used up. Unfortunately, many pathological processes can take place in the mammalian ovary, causing ovarian cancers and female infertility. Our major research interest is to identify the intra-ovarian and especially the intra-oocyte signaling molecules that contribute to the physiological and pathological changes in the ovaries. The molecules of interest are members of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway and those related to it.
The research team currently consists of 7 people: principal investigator Kui Liu, postdoc researchers Pradeep Reddy and Hua Zhang, and graduate students Wenjing Zheng, Hairu Yang, Gorre Nagaraju, and Deepak Adhikari. Most of the time we also have another 1-2 project students. We are constantly looking for highly motivated research students and postdocs. Our projects are supported by the Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet), the Swedish Cancer Society (Cancerfonden), VINOVA, the Torsten and Ragnar Söderberg Foundation, and the Novo Nordisk Foundation (Denmark). For more information, please contact Kui Liu.
1. Zheng W., Gorre N., Shen Y., Noda T., Ogawa W., Lundin E., and Liu K. Maternal PI3K signaling is crucial for embryonic genome activation and preimplantation embryogenesis. EMBO Rep. 2010. In press.
2. Adhikari D and Liu K. mTOR signaling in the control of activation of primordial follicles. Review. Cell Cycle. 9(9):1673-74. 2010.
3. Reddy P, Zheng W, Liu K. Mechanisms maintaining the dormancy and survival of mammalian primordial follicles. Review. Trends Endocrinol Metab. 21(2):96-103. 2010.
4. Jagarlamudi K, Reddy P, Adhikari D, Liu K. Genetically modified mouse models for premature ovarian failure (POF). Review. Mol Cell Endocrinol. 5;315(1-2):1-10. 2010.
5. Adhikari D and Liu K. Molecular mechanisms underlying the activation of mammalian primordial follicles. Review. Endocrine Reviews. 30(5):438-64. 2009.
6. Adhikari D, Zheng WZ, Hämäläinen T., Huhtaniemi I., and Liu K. Tsc/mTORC1 signaling in oocytes governs the quiescence and activation of primordial follicles. Human Molecular Genetics. 19(3):397-410. 2010.
7. Reddy P., Adhikari D, Zheng WZ, Hämäläinen T., Ogawa W., Noda T., Volarevic S., Huhtaniemi I., and Liu K. PDK1 signaling in oocytes controls reproductive aging and lifespan by manipulating the survival of primordial follicles. Human Molecular Genetics. 18(15):2813-24. 2009.
8. Adhikari D, Flohr G, Gorre N, Shen Y, Yang H, Lundin E, Lan Z, Gambello MJ, Liu K. Disruption of Tsc2 in oocytes leads to overactivation of the entire pool of primordial follicles. Molecular Human Reproduction. 15, 765-70. 2009.
9. Jagarlamudi K., Liu L., Adhikari D., Reddy P., and Liu K. Oocyte-specific deletion of Pten in primordial or primary follicles in mice reveals a stage-specific function of PTEN/PI3K signaling in oocytes in controlling follicular activation. PLoS ONE. Jul 9;4(7):e6186. 2009.
10. Reddy P., Liu L., Adhikari D., Jagarlamudi K., Rajareddy S., Shen Y., Du C., Tang W., Hämäläinen T., Peng S.L., Lan Z.J., Cooney A.J., Huhtaniemi I. and Liu K. Oocyte-specific deletion of Pten causes premature activation of the primordial follicle pool. Science. 319, 611-613, 2008.
11. Rajareddy S., Reddy P., Du C., Jagarlamudi K., Tang W.L., Shen Y., Berthet C., Peng. S.L., Kaldis P. and Liu K. p27kip1 (Cdkn1b) controls ovarian development by suppressing follicle endowment and activation, and promoting follicle atresia in mice. Molecular Endocrinology. 21, 2189-2202. 2007.
12. Liu L., Rajareddy S., Reddy P., Du C., Jagarlamudi K., Shen Y., Gunnarsson D., Selstam G., Boman K. and Liu K. Infertility caused by retardation of follicular development in mice with oocyte-specific expression of Foxo3a. Development. 134, 1, 199-209. 2007.
13. Liu K, Rajareddy S, Liu L, Jagarlamudi K, Boman K, Selstam G. and Reddy P. Control of Mammalian Oocyte Growth and Early Follicular Development by the Oocyte PI3 Kinase Pathway: New Roles for an Old Timer. Invited Review. Developmental Biology. 299 (1), 1-11. 2006.
14. Reddy P, Shen L, Boman K, Lundin E, Ottander U, Lindgren P, Sun QY, Liu K. Activation of Akt (PKB) and suppression of FKHRL1 in mouse and rat oocytes by stem cell factor during follicular activation and development. Developmental Biology 15;281(2):160-70. 2005.