Han lab has engaged in dynamic research programs addressing important biological problems related to human diseases, primarily using C. elegans and mouse. The lab always aims for important questions in relatively unexplored areas and encourages researchers to generate their own ideas. In the early 90s, the lab focused on identifying key regulators of the RTK-RAS-MAP kinase signaling, and then extended efforts to tackling genetic redundancy. In the late 90s, some researchers moved to study cellular/morphogenesis events during development, including discovering the SUN-KASH NE complexes and their functions. The lab has also made breakthrough advances in studying the functions of miRNAs and non-canonic caspase activities using systematic methods. In recent years, the lab discovered four novel nutrient sensing mechanisms that regulate development, reproductivity and behavior in response to changes in fatty acids and nucleotide variants. We are also exploring nutrients from gut microbes.
Functions of lipids, lipid metabolism and small RNAs in animal development and behaviors under various physiological conditions, Stress responses, starvation responses, Nucleotide metabolism, C elegans and mouse genetics, nuclear envelope complexes, nutrient response, metabolism, environmental sex determination, nucleotide sensing, non-canonic function of caspases, impact of gut of microbes on animal physiology, iron uptake