Catherine P. Chia
Catherine Chia
Associate Professor

Ph.D Michigan State University, 1986
Contact Information
216 Manter Hall


Research Interests

My research expertise is in the area of membrane-cytoskeletal interactions and membrane protein interactions during the process of phagocytosis and the related phenomenon of cell-substrate adhesion. Using the cellular slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum (a harmless soil amoebae) as a model for phagocytes, project goals include: 1) identifying plasma membrane proteins involved in the phagocytosis process; 2) exploring the mechanisms and regulation of the signal transduction pathways mediated by these molecules; and 3) the regulation of phagosome formation and fusion with endosomes.

Presently, we are focused on a plasma membrane glycoprotein, gp130, that is exposed on the surface of amoebae of D. discoideum. We are interested in its role possibly as a phagocytosis receptor and/or adhesion molecule. By modifying the gene for gp130, we are generating cell lines that either have an inactive gene, or produce mutant forms of gp130. We are also constructing green fluorescent protein variants of gp130 that will allow us to monitor the fate of gp130 in real time. Biochemical and molecular genetic methods, as well as microscopy will be used to study the behavior of the cells and thus provide insights into the in vivo function of gp130.



 Feasley, C.L., J.M. Johnson, C.M. West, and C.P. Chia (2010) Glycopeptidome of a heavily N-glycosylated cell surface glycoprotein of Dictyostelium implicated in cell adhesion. J. Proteome Res. 9, 3495-3510.

Chia, C.P., S. Gomathinayagam, R.J. Schmaltz, and L.K. Smoyer. (2005) Glycoprotein gp130 of Dictyostelium discoideum influences macropinocytosis and adhesion. Molecular Biology of the Cell 16, 2681-2693.

Yuan, A., C.-H. Siu, and C.P. Chia. (2001) Calcium requirement for efficient phagocytosis by Dictyostelium discoideum. Cell Calcium. 29, 229-238.

Yuan, A. D., R. G. Mills, C. P. Chia and J.J. Bray. (2000) Tubulin and neurofilament proteins are transported differently in axons of chicken motoneurons. Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology 20(6), 623-632.

Yuan, A., and C.P. Chia. (2001) Giant vacuoles observed in Dictyostelium discoideum. Cell Biology International. 25:147-55.

Yuan, A., R.G. Mills, C.P. Chia, and J.J. Bray. (2000) Tubulin and neurofilament proteins are transported differently in axons of chicken motoneurons. Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology. 20:623-632.

Yuan, A., and C.P. Chia. (2000) Role of esterase gp70 and its influence on growth and development of Dictyostelium discoideum. Experimental Cell Research. 261:336-347.

Yuan, A., R.L. Pardy, and C.P. Chia. 1999. Non-specific interactions alter lipopolysaccharide patterns and protein mobility on sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gels. Electrophoresis. 20:1946-1949.

Yuan, A., and C.P. Chia. (1999) Co-loss of profilin I, II and cofilin with actin from maturing phagosomes of Dictyostelium discoideum. Protoplasma. 209:214-225.

Chia, C.P., L. Bomblies, and K.K. Taylor. (1998) Cytoskeletal association of an esterase in Dictyostelium discoideum. Experimental Cell Research. 244:340-348.