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Peng Jin, PhD

Principal Investigator & Chair

Department of Human Genetics

Dr. Peng Jin received his doctorate degree in Molecular and Developmental Biology from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital/University of Cincinnati, and postdoctoral training at Emory University. At Emory, Dr. Jin is interested in the roles of noncoding RNAs and epigenetic modulation in neural development and brain disorders. Dr. Jin is the recipient of Beckman Young Investigator Award, Basil O’Connor Scholar Research Award, Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow in Neuroscience, and NARSAD Independent Investigator Award.




My research interests include non-coding RNA, chemical biology, and epigenetic pathogenesis of neurological disorders.

Yujing Li, PhD

Ronghua Li obtained his Bachelor degree of Medical Science in Luzhou Medical College in 1983 and his Doctoral degree of Medicine in West China University of Medical Science in 1995. He worked in Department of Human Genetics in Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center as a Research Associate and Research Instructor from 2001 to 2016. In 2016 Dr. Li was recruited as an Instructor by Department of Human Genetics in the Emory University School of Medicine to study of gene editing/cell therapy (iPSCs differentiation into target cells) for the inherited diseases such as phenylketonuria (PKU). In the meantime, Dr. Li is also doing epigenetic study in Dr. Jin’s lab.

Ronghua Li, MD, PhD

I am interested in the following topics: neurodevelopment related with neural cell migration during early development; neural function specifying excitatory and inhibitory synaptic balance related with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and the role of Fmr1 in fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) and Fragile X syndrome (FXS).

Yunhee Kang, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow

I obtained my Ph.D. from the Australian National University where I studied the effect of an RNA modification, 5-methylcytosine, on mRNA metabolism. In the Jin lab, I am interested in understanding the role of RNA modifications in neurodegenerative diseases such as Fragile X syndrome and Alzheimer’s.

Andrew Shafik, PhD

I received my Ph.D. from Auburn University in 2018. My doctoral research focused on the identification of loci controlling heat tolerance and ESC disease resistance in catfish using GWAS and transcriptomic analyses. I joined Jin lab in September of 2018. My research interest is studying the role of DNA modifications in CNS development and neurodegenerative diseases by using multi-omics data.

Yulin Jin, PhD

I obtained my Ph.D. from Ocean University of China where I focused on molecular basis of sexual differentiation in scallop. I joined Jin lab in January of 2020. My current research interest is the molecular pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases caused by expansion of tandem repeats.

Ruojiao Li, PhD

I received my Ph.D. in Genetics & Genomics from Baylor College of Medicine in 2020. My thesis work focused on Fragile X-associated primary ovarian insufficiency (FXPOI) and understanding the contributions of expanded CGG-containing RNAs and its translated peptide product FMRpolyG to ovarian pathology. I joined the Jin lab in October 2020, and my research interests include 1) using mouse models to elucidate the mechanism of FXPOI in primary ovarian tissues and 2) using iPSCs to study the effects of expanded CGG-repeats in differentiated ovarian-like cells derived from patient iPSCs.

Katherine Shelly, PhD

Graduate Students

I am a second-year graduate student in the Genetics and Molecular Biology program. My current research focus is on DNA and RNA modifications and their role in the development and progression of Alzheimer’s disease. In my spare time, I like to think about hiking, rock climbing, and going to the gym.

Matthew Armstrong

I am a graduate student in 8-year Clinical Medicine program from Xiangya School of Medicine, Central South University. I am interested in epigenetic modifications in neurodegenerative diseases.

Yiqu Cao

I'm an MD/PhD student in the Neuroscience Program. Both my research and clinical interests lie in neurological disorders affecting children. In the Jin Lab, my research focuses on the neurogenetics of fragile X syndrome (FXS).

Azalea Lee


I am a research specialist and joined the lab in 2016. I investigate drosophila eye screening and behavior test to identify genetic modifiers in Fragile X-associated tremor ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). I am also involved in epigenetic study.

Junghwa Lim
Lead Research Specialist
Lab Manager

Undergraduate Students

Hwanwook Seong is a senior  at Emory University double majoring in music and biology (pre-med track). He is interested in developmental diseases and how epigenetic-related projects can further influence research. His current project delves into the roles of different genetic modifiers in lysosomal storage diseases and how they can modulate CGG repeat toxicity seen in FXTAS.

Hwanwook Seong

I am a junior at Emory University majoring in biology and minoring in women's, gender, and sexuality studies (WGSS). I am currently working with Dr. Kate Shelly in the Jin lab to examine a mouse model of Fragile X-associated primary ovarian insufficiency (FXPOI), looking at various stages of their reproductive life and the ways in which FXPOI can be expressed within the ovaries in hopes of better understanding the mechanism in humans.

Sylvie Call
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