Riqiang Yan, Ph.D

Professor and Chair, Department of Neuroscience, University of Connecticut Health Center

Dr. Riqiang Yan discovered BACE1 by employing a novel bioinformatic approach coupled with enzymatic characterization, and this original discovery was widely recognized by the field and earned him the MetLife award, which is one of the most prestigious recognitions in the AD field. After this original discovery, Dr. Yan conducted extensive cellular and molecular characterizations of both BACE1 and BACE2. His lab has been of one the first to demonstrate how BACE1 and BACE2 differentially cleave amyloid precursor protein (APP). Dr. Yan studied biological functions of BACE1 in vivo and found central and peripheral hypomyelination, spontaneous epileptic seizures, increased hippocampal astrogenesis, and decreased neurogenesis in BACE1-null mice. Dr. Yan discovered that neuregulin-1, neuregulin-3, Jag1, and Jag2 are all BACE1 physiological substrates. His studies have been published in Nature, Nature Medicine, Nature Neuroscience, Molecular Psychiatry, Cell Report, EMBO J, Biological Psychiatry, Journal of Neuroscience, etc.


Funded Research

These projects were made possible from Cure Alzheimer's Fund support.

Selected Publications

These published papers resulted from Cure Alzheimer’s Fund support.

Palko, S. I., Benoit, M. R., Yao, A. Y., Mohan, R., & Yan, R. ER-stress response in retinal Müller glia occurs significantly earlier than amyloid pathology in the Alzheimer’s mouse brain and retina, Glia, March 28, 2024, Read More

Zhou, J., Shi, Q., Ge, Y. Y., He, W., Hu, X., Xia, W., & Yan, R. Reticulon 1 and 3 are essential for axonal growth and synaptic maintenance associated with the intellectual development, Human Molecular Genetics, May 25, 2023, Read More

Gayen, M., Benoit, M. R., Fan, Q., Hudobenko, J., & Yan, R. The CX3CL1 intracellular domain exhibits neuroprotection via insulin receptor/ insulin like growth factor receptor signaling, Journal of Biological Chemistry, September 24, 2022, Read More

Zhou, J., Singh, N., Galske, J., Hudobenko, J., Hu, X., & Yan, R. BACE1 regulates expression of Clusterin in astrocytes for enhancing clearance of β-amyloid peptides, Molecular Neurodegeneration, May 4, 2023, Read More

Das, B., Singh, N., Yao, A. Y., Zhou, J., He, W., Hu, X., & Yan, R. BACE1 controls synaptic function through modulating release of synaptic vesicles, Molecular Psychiatry, June 22, 2021, Read More

Hudobenko, J., Gayen, M., Benoit, M. R., Singh, N., & Yan, R. Exploration of C-terminal CX3CL1 for reducing age-dependent neurodegeneration, Neural Regeneration Research, April 20, 2023, Read More

Singh, N., Das, B., Zhou, J., Hu, X., & Yan, R. Targeted BACE-1 inhibition in microglia enhances amyloid clearance and improved cognitive performance, Science Advances, July 20, 2022, Read More

Fan, Q., Gayen, M., Singh, N., Gao, F., He, W., Hu, X., Tsai, L. H., & Yan, R. The intracellular domain of CX3CL1 regulates adult neurogenesis and Alzheimer’s amyloid pathology, Journal of Experimental Medicine, June 17, 2019, Read More

Zhu, M. H., Jogdand, A. H., Jang, J., Nagella, S. C., Das, B., Milosevic, M. M., Yan, R., & Antic, S. D. Evoked Cortical Depolarizations Before and After the Amyloid Plaque Accumulation: Voltage Imaging Study, Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, July 4, 2022, Read More

McDade, E., Voytyuk, I., Aisen, P., Bateman, R. J., Carrillo, M. C., De Strooper, B., Haass, C., Reiman, E. M., Sperling, R., Tariot, P. N., Yan, R., Masters, C. L., Vassar, R., & Lichtenthaler, S. F. The case for low-level BACE1 inhibition for the prevention of Alzheimer disease, Nature Reviews Neurology, September 21, 2021, Read More

Singh, N., Benoit, M. R., Zhou, J., Das, B., Davila-Velderrain, J., Kellis, M., Tsai, L. H., Hu, X., & Yan, R. BACE-1 inhibition facilitates the transition from homeostatic microglia to DAM-1, Science Advances, June 17, 2022, Read More