Rebecca Zhangqiuzi Fan

Post-doctoral Research Associate

Environmental Health Sciences



The link between microbiota and the gut to brain spread of protein aggregation in Parkinson’s disease (PD)


Dr. Fan received her bachelor’s degree in Bioengineering from East China University of Science and Technology (Shanghai, China). She then moved to England to complete her master’s degree at Cranfield University, where she worked on a company-sponsored project to develop nano-polymer coated bone implants. She joined Dr. Kim Tieu’s lab in 2013 as a Ph.D. candidate at Peninsula Schools of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Plymouth (Devon, U.K.). Her thesis focuses on investigating the protective role of Dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1) inhibition against alpha-synuclein toxicity.

Dr. Fan joined the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Robert Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work in 2016 when Dr. Tieu relocated his lab here from England. She continues her research with Drp1 but with a major emphasis on protein aggregation and spread from the gut to brain. Her work also involves developing therapeutic strategies for PD.


Parkinson’s Disease Research Laboratory


  • University of Plymouth, Ph.D.
  • Cranfield University, MSc
  • East China university of Science and Technology, BS


Fan, R.Z., Guo, M., Luo, S. et al. Exosome release and neuropathology induced by α-synuclein: new insights into protective mechanisms of Drp1 inhibition. acta neuropathol commun 7, 184 (2019) doi:10.1186/s40478-019-0821-4

Bido S, Soria FN, Fan RZ, Bezard E, and Tieu K. Mitochondrial division inhibitor-1 is neuroprotective in the A53T-α-synuclein rat model of Parkinson’s disease. Scientific Reports (2017), 7(1):7495. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-07181-0.  

Phillip Rappold, Mei Cui, Jonathan Grima, Rebecca Fan, Karen Bentley, Linan Chen, Xiaoxi Zhuang, William Bowers and Kim Tieu. Drp1 inhibition attenuates neurotoxicity and dopamine release deficits in vivo, Nature Communications (2014), 5:5244 doi: 10.1038/ncomms6244.