Clinical Interests

Dr. Zhao’s research group aims to heal wounds better and to regenerate tissues.

Their current work focuses on: (1) Development of novel therapies to improve healing of chronic slow- or non-healing skin and cornea wounds which are a major problem in elderly or diabetic patients. (2) Use stem cell treatments to enhance regeneration and healing.

Research/Academic Interests

Our research is aimed toward improving wound healing and regeneration of damaged or diseased tissues with electric signaling.

Our current work focuses on: (1)The role of naturally occurring electric fields in wound healing and tissue regeneration, (2) Development of therapies to electrically stimulate and guide healing and tissue repair, and (3) Mobilization and guiding migration of stem cells.

Center/Program Affiliation

Center for Neuroscience


M.D., Third Military Medical University, Chong Qing, China 1985

M.Sc, Ph.D., Third Military Medical University, Chongqing, China, 1991

Select Recent Publications

Nakajima K, Zhu K, Sun YH, Hegyi B, Zeng Q, Murphy CJ, Small JV, Chen-Izu Y, Izumiya Y, Penninger JM, Zhao M. KCNJ15/Kir4.2 couples with polyamines to sense weak extracellular electric fields in galvanotaxis. Nat Commun. 2015 Oct 9;6:8532.

Gao R, Zhao S, Jiang X, Sun Y, Zhao S, Gao J, Borleis J, Willard S, Tang M, Cai H, Kamimura Y, Huang Y, Jiang J, Huang Z, Mogilner A, Pan T, Devreotes PN, Zhao M. A large-scale screen reveals genes that mediate electrotaxis in Dictyostelium discoideum. Sci Signal. 2015 May 26;8(378):ra50.

Rudell JC, Gao J, Sun Y, Sun Y, Chodosh J, Schwab I, Zhao M. Acanthamoeba migration in an electric field. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2013 Jun 21;54(6):4225-33.

Sun Y, Do H, Gao J, Zhao R, Zhao M, Mogilner A. Keratocyte fragments and cells utilize competing pathways to move in opposite directions in an electric field. Curr Biol. 2013 Apr 8;23(7):569-74.

Cao L, Wei D, Reid B, Zhao S, Pu J, Pan T, Yamoah E, Zhao M. Endogenous electric currents might guide rostral migration of neuroblasts. EMBO Rep. 2013 Feb;14(2):184-90.

Guo A, Song B, Reid B, Gu Y, Forrester JV, Jahoda CA, Zhao M. Effects of physiological electric fields on migration of human dermal fibroblasts. J Invest Dermatol. 2010 Sep;130(9):2320-7.

Reid B, Nuccitelli R, Zhao M. Non-invasive measurement of bioelectric currents with a vibrating probe. Nat Protoc. 2007;2(3):661-9.

Zhao M, Song B, Pu J, Wada T, Reid B, Tai G, Wang F, Guo A, Walczysko P, Gu Y, Sasaki T, Suzuki A, Forrester JV, Bourne HR, Devreotes PN, McCaig CD, Penninger JM. Electrical signals control wound healing through phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase-gamma and PTEN. Nature. 2006 Jul 27;442(7101):457-60.

Feng JF, Liu J, Zhang XZ, Zhang L, Jiang JY, Nolta J, Zhao M. Guided Migration of Neural Stem Cells Derived from Human Embryonic Stem Cells by an Electric Field. Stem Cells. 2012; 30(2):349-55.

Zhao M, Chalmers L, Cao L, Vieira AC, Mannis M, Reid B. Electrical signaling in control of ocular cell behaviors. Prog Retin Eye Res. 2012; 31(1):65-88.

Recent Videos


Min Zhao, UC Davis - CIRM Stem Cell #SciencePitch