My research focuses on the role and effector responses of monocytes in healthy individuals and in patients with inflammatory diseases. Circulating monocytes are a heterogeneous and functionally diverse cell population that can be divided into three subsets: classical (CMo), intermediate (IMo), and non-classical monocytes/ patrolling monocytes (PMo). The frequency/number, gene expression profile and activity of IMo and PMo significantly change in a variety of inflammatory diseases including cancer, infectious and autoimmune diseases with the changes associated with disease risk and severity as well as response to treatment.
Our ongoing studies examine mechanisms controlling monocyte subset homeostasis and how these mechanisms are altered in inflammatory and disease states. We believe that these studies will not only lead to uncovering new mechanisms for monocyte differentiation and the regulation of the inflammation process but also will pave the way for “monocyte diagnostics” and “monocyte therapeutics” in inflammatory diseases.
• NIH P01 HL149626 Zhong Co-I (Project 1 PI Yazdanbakhsh) 07/20/2020 – 06/30/2025 “Alloimmunization and the Humoral Response to Hemolysis”
• NIH R56 1R56HL165202-01 Zhong Hui Co-PI 13/9/2022-01/08/2023 “Transfusion-driven hyperhemolysis in sickle cell disease”
Education & Training
Ph.D. Pathogen Biology, Peking Union Medical College, Tsinghua University, Beijing 2009.
Wang R, Bao W, Pal M, Liu Y, Yazdanbakhsh K, Zhong H. Intermediate monocytes induced by IFN-γ inhibit cancer metastasis by promoting NK cell activation through FOXO1 and interleukin-27. J Immunother Cancer. 2022 Jan;10(1):e003539.
Liu Y, Pal M, Bao W, Shi PA, Lobo CA, An X, Manwani D, Zhong H, Yazdanbakhsh K. Type I interferon is induced by hemolysis and drives antibody-mediated erythrophagocytosis in sickle cell disease. Blood. 2021 Sep 30;138(13):1162-1171.
Pal M, Bao W, Wang R, Liu Y, An X, Mitchell WB, Lobo CA, Minniti C, Shi PA, Manwani D, Yazdanbakhsh K, Zhong H. Hemolysis inhibits humoral B-cell responses and modulates alloimmunization risk in patients with sickle cell disease. Blood. 2021 Jan 14;137(2):269-280.
Mendelson A, Strat AN, Bao W, Rosston P, Fallon G, Ohrn S, Zhong H, Lobo C, An X, Yazdanbakhsh K. Mesenchymal stromal cells lower platelet activation and assist in platelet formation in vitro. JCI Insight. 2019 Aug 22;4(16).
Liu Y, Zhong H, Bao W, Mendelson A, An X, Shi P, Chou ST, Manwani D, Yazdanbakhsh K. Patrolling monocytes scavenge endothelial-adherent sickle RBCs: a novel mechanism of inhibition of vaso-occlusion in SCD. Blood. 2019 Aug 15;134(7):579-590.
Yi W, Bao W, Rodriguez M, Liu Y, Singh M, Ramlall V, Cursino-Santos JR, Zhong H, Elton CM, Wright GJ, Mendelson A, An X, Lobo CA, Yazdanbakhsh K. Robust adaptive immune response against Babesia microti infection marked by low parasitemia in a murine model of sickle cell disease. Blood Adv. 2018 Dec 11;2(23):3462-3478.
Zhong H*, Yazdanbakhsh K. Hemolysis and immune regulation. Curr Opin Hematol.2018 May;25(3):177-182. *Corresponding author
Wang C, Zhang Y, Han L, Guo L, Zhong H*, Wang J*. Hemin ameliorates influenza pneumonia by attenuating lung injury and regulating the immune response. Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2017 Jan;49(1):45-52. PMID: 27884416 (*Co-corresponding Author)
Godefroy E, Zhong H, Pham P, Friedman D, Yazdanbakhsh K. TIGIT-positive circulating follicular helper T cells display robust B-cell help functions: potential role in sickle cell alloimmunization. Haematologica. 2015 Nov;100(11):1415-25. PMID: 26250578;
Zhong H*, Bussel J, Yazdanbakhsh K. In vitro TNF blockade enhances ex vivo expansion of regulatory T cells in patients with immune thrombocytopenia. Br J Haematol. 2015 Jan;168(2):274-83. doi: 10.1111/bjh.13126. Epub 2014 Sep 24. PMID: 25252160; (*Co-corresponding Author)
Zhong H, Bao W, Friedman D, Yazdanbakhsh K. Hemin controls T cell polarization in sickle cell alloimmunization. J Immunol. 2014 Jul 1;193(1):102-10. PMID: 24879794; Article highlighted in Hematologist
Bao W*, Zhong H*, Yazdanbakhsh K. Immunologic characterization suggests reduced alloimmunization in a murine model of thalassemia intermedia. Transfusion. 2014 Nov;54(11):2880-91. PMID:24797509; （*Co-first Author）
Zhong H, Yazdanbakhsh K. Differential control of Helios(+/-) Treg development by monocyte subsets through disparate inflammatory cytokines. Blood. 2013 Mar 28;121(13):2494-502. PMID: 23365462；
Zhong H, Bao W, Li X, Miller A, Seery C, Haq N, Bussel J, Yazdanbakhsh K. CD16+ monocytes control T-cell subset development in immune thrombocytopenia. Blood. 2012 Oct 18;120(16):3326-35. PMID: 22915651;
Li X*, Zhong H*, Bao W, Boulad N, Evangelista J, Haider MA, Bussel J, Yazdanbakhsh K. Defective regulatory B-cell compartment in patients with immune thrombocytopenia. Blood. 2012 Oct 18:120(16):3318-25 PMID: 22859611;（*Co-first Author）Commentary in Blood
Zhong H, Lei X, Qin L, Wang J, Hung T. Augmentation of adenovirus 5 vector- mediated gene transduction under physiological pH conditions by a chitosan/NaHCO3 solution. Gene Ther. 2011 Mar;18(3):232-9. PMID: 20882055;
Bao W, Zhong H, Manwani D, Vasovic L, Uehlinger J, Lee MT, Sheth S, Shi P, Yazdanbankhsh K. Regulatory B cell compartment in transfused alloimmunized and non-alloimmunized patients with sickle cell disease. Am J Hematol. 2013 May 29. PMID: 23720018.
Yazdanbakhsh K, Zhong H, Bao W. Immune dysregulation in immune thrombocytopenia. Semin Hematol. 2013 Jan;50 Suppl 1:S63-7. PMID: 23664520;
Yazdanbakhsh K, Bao W, Zhong H. Immunoregulatory effects of stored red blood cells. Hematology Am Soc Hematol Educ Program. 2011;466-9. Review. PMID: 22160075.
Bao W, Zhong H, Li X, Lee MT, Schwartz J, Sheth S, Yazdanbakhsh K. Immune regulation in chronically transfused allo-antibody responder and nonresponder patients with sickle cell disease and β-thalassemia major. Am J Hematol. 2011 Dec;86(12):1001-6. PMID: 21953592.