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Joseph Zinski, Ph.D.

Department of Cell and Developmental Biology,
University of Pennsylvania


2010 B.S. Chemical Engineering – University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 

2017 Ph.D. Cell and Developmental Biology – University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA  

2019-Present PennPORT fellow, Department of Developmental Biology – University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia PA 

Research Mentor: Shawn Little, Ph.D. 

Research Topic: Transcriptional bursting is the cycling of genes between highly transcribing and non-transcribing states that is conserved in all cells. I aim to determine how the dynamics of transcriptional bursting are affected by histone post-translational modifications (eg. acetylation, methylation). I use the Drosophila Gap Genes as a model system and determine the dynamics of the promoter states of these genes using quantitative imaging and mathematical modeling.  

Teaching Interests: Cell Biology, Development, Genetics, Transcriptional Regulation, Quantitative Imagining, Stem Cells and Differentiation, General Biology  


Zinski J, Tuazon F, Huang Y, *Mullins MC, *Umulis D. “Imaging and quantification of P-Smad1/5 in zebrafish blastula and gastrula embryos.” 2019. Methods Mol Biol. 2019;1891:135-154. 

Mucha BE, Hashiguchi M, Zinski J, Shore EM, Mullins MC. “Variant BMP receptor mutations causing fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) in humans show BMP ligand-independent receptor activation in zebrafish.” Bone. January, 2018.  

Zinski J, Bu Y, Wang X, Umulis D, Mullins MC. “Systems biology derived source-sink mechanism of BMP gradient formation”. ELife. August, 2017.  

*Zinski J, Tajer B*, Mullins MC. 2017. “TGF-β family signaling in early vertebrate development”. Cold Spring Harb Perspect Biol. June, 2017.  

Bautista EJ, Zinski J, Szczepanek SM, Johnson EL, Tulman ER, Ching WM, Geary SJ, Srivastava R. 2013. “Semi-automated curation of metabolic models via flux balance analysis: a case study with Mycoplasma gallisepticum.” PLoS Comput Biol. 9(9):e1003208.  

Szczepanek SM, Tulman ER, Gorton TS, Zinski J, Aziz F, Liao X, Lu Z, Kutish GF, and Geary SJ. “Comparative Genomic Analyses of Attenuated Strains of Mycoplasma gallisepticum.” Infection and Immunity. 78 (2010), 1760-71. 


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