Life Sciences

Prof. WANG Jun, born in June 1976 at Dongtai of Jiangsu Province, graduated Ph.D. from the Peking University in 2002. He was appointed as Research Fellow at BGI in 2004, and now is the director of BGI andChief Scientist of 973 Project. Prof. Wang has long been engaged in development of bioinformatics algorithms and tools, researches on comparative genomics, molecular evolution, and relevance of genes and complex phenotypes, association study between human commensal microbes and health, and so on.
Since involved in the International Human Genome Project, Prof. Wang and the other leading scientists launched more than ten major research projects, such as the 1000 Genomes Project and the MetaHIT Project under the 7th FP program. In the research on human gut microbiota, Prof. Wang and his team firstly systematically build the "gut microbial gene catalogue", which is called "our other genome", and the polymorphism of human gut microbiota. To carry out analysis on gut microbial content in patients with type 2 diabetes, he and his team developed a protocol for a metagenome-wide association study (MGWAS) and established a new concept of metagenomic linkage group (MLG). The results of the research opened up a new area for the study of complex diseases.
Prof. Wang has published more than 260 SCI papers, the total citations were more than 30,000 times, furthermore, he has more than 100 patents applied or approved domestically or globally. Ten of his major research achievements were ranked as the "World's top ten scientific and technological progress" and "China's top ten scientific and technological progress", six appeared in the "International top ten science and technology news" and "Domestic top ten science and technology news", three were elected as "The top 10 news on basic scientific research". Prof. Wang as an individual has received more than 20 awards, such as "Youth Scientific Award In China", "TanJiaZhen Life Science Innovation Award", "ZhouGuangZhao Award", "Award for Excellent Scientific Team Achievements" by Hong Kong "QiuShi" Foundation and World Chinese awards, and so on.

A study of "gut microbial gene catalogue" and its relationship with the type 2 diabetes


The pathogenic factors of complex diseases are usually based on several factors, including genetic factors, environmental factors, diet and their mutual effect. With the help of the next-generation sequencing technology, Prof. Wang Jun and his team carried out severalstudies on genetic factors of diseases from multiple omics levels and completed a series of achievements. The role of diet and environmental factors in the development of complex diseases is always a world challenge. For this study, Wang Jun and his team took the human gut microbiota as an entry point, they successfully built the first "gene catalogue of human gut microbiome"in the world, which includes 3 million genes, the polymorphisms and similarity of different individuals’ gut microbiota, and preliminary elucidated the associations between gut microbiota and human health. In order to further interpretation, they launched a large-scale case-control study on type 2 diabetes (T2D). They developed a protocol for a metagenome-wide association study (MGWAS), and established the concept of a metagenomic linkage group (MLG) for the first time. As a result, they identified the relationship between T2D and the gut microbiota, and clearly demonstrated the differences on structure and composition of gut microbiota between the T2D patients and the control group. Meanwhile, Prof. Wang and his team verified a series of biomarkers providing a novel method for the clinical diagnosis and treatment of T2D in the future, which could offer novel strategies for functional prevention of the other complex diseases as well. This achievement was awarded as the 2012 China Top Ten diabetes researches -- "Most Influential Research Award."