XinZi Zheng

PhD Candidate


PhD Candidate, CSC-RUG scholarship, University of Groningen, The Netherlands, 2021

MSc, Department of Basic Medical Sciences, JiLin University, China, 2020



Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a chronic, life-threatening lung disease with increasing morbidity and mortality.

The main risk factor for COPD is the inhalation of noxious particles and gases, including cigarette smoke (CS), air pollution and job related exposures. The airway and alveolar epithelium forms a physical barrier by adherens and tight junctions between neighboring cells and participates in innate immune defense, protecting the submucosal layers from environmental insults. Of note, the expression of the adherens junction molecule E-cadherin is thought to be crucial for epithelial barrier formation. The fact that only 20% of smokers develop COPD suggests that genetic and epigenetic factors contribute to the susceptibility for this disease. Multiple studies have suggested that Non-coding RNAs (NcRNA) are involved in the pathogenesis of COPD. The correlation between Non-coding RNA and COPD will be established and the modification of E-cadherin will be discussed further.

Keywords: Non-coding RNA, COPD, E-cadherin, epithelium damage and repair