Jane M. Liu

  • Expertise


    Jane M. Liu’s research projects focus on gene regulation in bacteria and mechanisms that contribute to the persistence of the bacterial pathogen that causes cholera disease. In short, she’s interested in how the bacteria are able to sense their surroundings and use that information to “turn on” the appropriate genes to maximize their survival. The Liu Lab is also interested in applying knowledge about how genes are regulated in nature to create novel genetic systems in the lab. Prof. Liu’s research has been funded by the NIH, the NSF and the Dreyfus Foundation.

    A two-time recipient of the Wig Award for Excellence in Teaching, Prof. Liu teaches courses ranging from general chemistry to chemical biology to analysis of scientific literature. Whether working with students in the laboratory or the classroom, Prof. Liu’s goal is to teach students the skills and vocabulary necessary to appreciate scientific methodology, to recognize the products of science research, to think critically and create their own ideas and to make the world a more just place.

    Prior to joining Pomona, Prof. Liu was an Assistant Professor at Drew University. Before that, she was part of the first cohort of the NIH IRACDA postdoctoral program at Tufts University, which aims to provide fellows with both extensive training in scientific research skills and hands-on experience with inclusive pedagogy.

    Research Interests

    • Identify the mechanisms by which Vibrio cholerae responds to carbon sources in their environment
    • Map the global network of proteins and regulatory RNAs that modulate Vibrio cholerae physiology upon nutrient shifts
    • Assess how students learn to engage with scientific literature
    • Interventions that can increase equity and inclusion in science education

    Areas of Expertise

    • Molecular Microbiology
    • Chemical Biology
  • Work


    Recent Articles

    With C. Hollond and R-J, “Integrating anti-racism, social justice, and equity themes in a biochemistry class,” Journal of Chemical Education, 2021.

    With C. Beck, S Perry, and D. Stoebel, “Cra and cAMP receptor protein have opposing roles in the regulation of fruB in Vibrio cholerae,” Journal of Bacteriology, 2021.

    With R-J. Sung, A. Wilson, S. Lo, L. Crowl, J. Nardi, and K. St. Clair K, “Biochem AR—an augmented reality educational tool for teaching macromolecular structure and function,” Journal of Chemical Education, 2020.

    With M. Zhang, “Transcription of cis antisense small RNA MtlS in Vibrio cholerae is regulated by transcription of its target gene, mtlA,” Journal of Bacteriology, 2019.

    With K. Page, J. Shaffer, S. Lin, and M. Zhang, "Engineering riboswitches in vivo using dual genetic selection and fluorescence-activated cell sorting," ACS Synthetic Biology, 2018.

    With T. Byer, J. Wang, M. Zhang, A. Blachman, N. Vather, and B. Visser, "MtlR negatively regulates mannitol utilization by Vibrio cholerae,” Microbiology, 2017.

    With M.J. Sweredoski and S. Hess, "Improved 6-plex tandem mass tags quantification throughput using a linear ion trap-high-energy collision induced dissociation MS3 scan," Analytical Chemistry, 2016.

    With T. E. Vasquez, K. A. Muzikar, C. Saldaña, and D. Mashek, "Searching for synthetic antimicrobial peptides: An experiment for organic chemistry students," Journal of Chemical Education, 2016.

  • Education


    Tufts University School of Medicine

    Harvard University

    Swarthmore College

    Recent Courses Taught

    • CHEM 112 – Analysis of Scientific Literature
    • CHEM 115 – Biochemistry with laboratory
    • CHEM 181 – Chemical Biology
  • Awards & Honors

    Awards & Honors

    Wig Distinguished Professor Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2015, 2020

    National Institutes of Health; Academic Research Enhancement Award (AREA) Research Grant, 2010, 2014, 2019

    Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, 2016

    National Science Foundation; CAREER Award Research Grant, 2012

    National Institutes of Health; Training in Education and Critical Research Skills (TEACRS) Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2006

    National Science Foundation; Graduate Research Fellowship, 2002