Zheng Laboratory


Versiti Blood Research Institute


View Ze Zheng, MBBS, PhD Bio
Researcher closeup extraction samples

Research Areas

Our laboratory studies the interactions between metabolism and blood clot lysis. Fibrinolysis, the primary mechanism that dissolves a blood clot, is initiated by a serine protease tissue-type plasminogen activator (tPA). Our previous study discussed a novel source and regulation of endogenous basal plasma tPA derived from hepatocytes, which is important for fibrinolysis when a vessel injury occurs. The tPA activity is inhibited primarily by the serpin plasminogen activator inhibitor 1 (PAI-1). A balance between tPA and PAI-1 in plasma is essential for preventing excessive clotting. Our recent study revealed the mechanism of how hepatocytes sense metabolic stresses and imbalance the production of tPA and PAI-1, influencing the degree of impaired fibrinolysis in obesity.

The goal of our laboratory is to understand the role of hepatocyte-derived tPA and basal fibrinolysis in hemostasis, and to develop diagnostic/ preventive/ therapeutic strategies that can be used to combat atherosclerosis, thrombosis, and bleeding disorders. Specific areas of research interests include: 1) a new link between reduced fibrinolysis and dyslipidemia, 2) circadian regulation of basal fibrinolysis and the morning onset of thrombotic events, 3) the role of hepatocyte tPA and liver injuries, 4) increased fibrinolysis in hemophilia, and 5) a timely study of fibrinolysis in COVID-19.

Current Members

Hayley Lund, BS

Hayley Lund. BS

Lab Manager

Hayley received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology in 2002 from the University of Stevens Point, Wisconsin. While working in David Mattson’s lab her research focused on salt induced hypertension and its effects on the renal system. Hayley joined Dr. Zheng’s lab in August of 2020 eager to help continue research on thrombosis and atherosclerosis.

Wen Dai, MD

Wen Dai, MD

Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr. Wen Dai received his medical degree from Xiangya Medical School, Central South University, China in 2013. He finished his master’s degree and clinical residency training in internal medicine in The Second Xiangya Hospital in China in 2016 and continued his PhD and Clinical fellowship training in cardiology. After two years research training in Columbia University Medical Center, he joined the Zheng laboratory in September 2020 with an interest in the role of hepatic tPA in atherothrombosis.

Marjorie Kipp, BS

Marjorie Kipp, BS


Marge received her Certification as Biotechnology Technician in 1996 followed by her BS in Business Management in 2006. She has been with the BRI since 2003. She currently supports five labs and manages animal colonies.

Recent Publications