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Jiantao Zhang, PhD

Academic Title:

Research Associate

Primary Appointment:



10 South Pine Street MSTF 7-16, Baltimore, MD 21201

Phone (Primary):


Education and Training

Shandong Normal University, BS, 2000-2004

Shanghai Institue of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ph D, 2004-2010

Texas A & M University, Postdoctral study, 2010-2012

Virginia Tech, Postdoctral study, 2012-2015

The University of Arizona, Postdoctral study, 2015-2019


Dr. Zhang’s research is focused on the mechanism of viral replication, virus-host interaction and drug discovery. The goal is to identify essential viral and host factors as antiviral drug targets and use these targets to develop new antiviral drugs. Using a combination of tools of molecular biology, biochemistry, genetics and virology, Dr. Zhang had identified several host lipid synthesis proteins that are required for viral replication complexes assembly of positive-strand RNA viruses, highlighting the important roles of host lipid in viral replication. Moreover, he had developed several assays and high throughput screening systems for antiviral drug testing and discovery. He had identified a number of potent small molecular antivirals against influenza virus or enterovirus. Currently, he is a Research Associate in Dr. Richard Zhao’s lab at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, where he studies HIV and Zika virus with aims to discover novel HIV PR inhibitors and explain why the current epidemic Zika virus strains caused outbreak whereas the historic Zika virus strain didn’t.

Highlighted Publications

Zhang J, Hu Y, Wu N, Wang J: Discovery of Influenza Polymerase PA-PB1 Interaction Inhibitors Using an In Vitro Split-Luciferase Complementation-Based Assay. ACS Chemical Biology 11/2019; XXXX(XXX)., DOI:10.1021/acschembio.9b00552

Zhang J*, Hu Y*, Hau R, Musharrafieh R, Ma C, Zhou X, Chen Y, Wang J: Identification of NMS-873, an allosteric and specific p97 inhibitor, as a broad antiviral against both influenza A and B viruses. European Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences 03/2019; 133. (*, equal contribution)

Zhang J*, Hu Y*, Foley C, Wang Y, Musharrafieh R, Xu S, Zhang Y, Ma C, Hulme C, Wang J: Exploring Ugi-Azide Four-Component Reaction Products for Broad-Spectrum Influenza Antivirals with a High Genetic Barrier to Drug Resistance. Scientific Reports 12/2018; 8(1)., DOI:10.1038/s41598-018-22875-9 (*,equal contribution)

Hu Y*, Zhang J*, Musharrafieh RG, Ma C, Hau R, Wang J: Discovery of dapivirine, a nonnucleoside HIV-1 reverse transcriptase inhibitor, as a broad-spectrum antiviral against both influenza A and B viruses. Antiviral Research 08/2017; 145., DOI:10.1016/j.antiviral.2017.07.016 (*, equal contribution)

Zhang J, Zhang Z, Chukkapalli V, Nchoutmboube JA, Li J, Randall G, Belov GA, Wang X: Positive-strand RNA viruses stimulate host phosphatidylcholine synthesis at viral replication sites. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 02/2016; 113(8)., DOI:10.1073/pnas.1519730113

Zhang J*, Diaz A*, Mao L, Ahlquist P, Wang X: Host Acyl Coenzyme A Binding Protein Regulates Replication Complex Assembly and Activity of a Positive-Strand RNA Virus. Journal of Virology 02/2012; 86(9):5110-21., DOI:10.1128/JVI.06701-11 (*, equal contribution)