Lin, Yi

  PI, IDG/McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Tsinghua University
  PI, Center for Life Science
  Assistant Professor, School of Life Science, Tsinghua University


  Office: B205, Biomedicine Hall, Tsinghua University, Beijing,10084

  Lab: B209 Biomedicine Hall

  Phone: +86 10 62782106 (office)   +86 10 62782106 (Lab)



[Research Focus]

Neurodegenerative diseases are turning into global health issues. A common pathological signature of such diseases is abnormal protein aggregation in the brain. Dys-regulated phase transitions of protein and other biological macromolecules underlie the formation of such aggregation: under physiological conditions, certain proteins go through liquid-liquid phase separation to form membrane-less organelles, thereby partitioning the intracellular space and accurately orchestrating various biochemical reactions; during pathogenesis, abnormal phase transition of such proteins produce insoluble protein aggregation, which in turn, lead to neuronal cell death. We are investigating the phase transition of biological macromolecules in several aspects, including the molecular mechanism and its physiological role in the nervous system. Our ultimate goal is to develop novel therapeutic approaches through intervening pathological phase transitions.


[Education & Experience]
2020-present   PI, IDG/McGovern Institute for Brain Research, Tsinghua University
2020-present   PI, Center for Life Science, Tsinghua University
2020-present   Assistant Professor, School of Life Science, Tsinghua University
2014-2020       Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, USA
2009-2014       Ph.D., Marquette University, USA
2005-2009       B.S., Jiangnan University, China
[Selected publications]
  • Yi Lin, Xiaoming Zhou, Masato Kato, Daifei Liu, Sina Ghaemmaghami, Benjamin P. Tu, and Steven L. McKnight, Redox-mediated Regulation of an Evolutionarily Conserved Cross-beta Structure Formed by the TDP43 LC Domain. (2020) PNAS. (in press)
  • Yi Lin#, Eiichiro Mori#, Masato Kato#, Siheng Xiang#, Leeju Wu, Ilmin Kwon and Steven L. McKnight, Toxic PR Poly- Dipeptides Encoded by the C9orf72 Repeat Expansion Target LC Domain Polymers. (2016) Cell. Oct 20; 167(3):789-802; #co-first authors
  • Dylan T. Murray#, Masato Kato#, Yi Lin, Kent R. Thurber, Ivan Hung, Steven L. McKnight, and Robert Tycko, Structure of FUS Protein Fibrils and Its Relevance to Self-Assembly and Phase Separation of Low-Complexity Domains. (2017) Cell. Oct 19; 171(3):615–627; #co-first authors
  • Masato Kato, Yi Lin, Steven L. McKnight, Cross-β Polymerization and Hydrogel Formation by Low-Complexity Sequence Proteins. (2017) Methods. Aug 15; 126:3–11
  • Siheng Xiang, Masato Kato, Leeju C. Wu, Yi Lin, Ming Ding, Yajie Zhang, Yonghao Yu, Steven L. McKnight, The LC Domain of hnRNPA2 Adopts Similar Conformations in Hydrogel Polymers, Liquid-like Droplets, and Nuclei. (2015) Cell. Nov 5;163(4):829-39