Xiang-Jin Meng (a.k.a. X.J. Meng) is a University Distinguished Professor and Director of Center for Emerging, Zoonotic and Arthropod-borne Pathogens at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech). He is a virologist recognized for his work on delineating the mechanisms of transmission and pathogenesis of emerging and zoonotic viruses. Meng is particularly known for his studies of hepatitis E virus cross-species infection and zoonosis, and vaccine development against emerging and re-emerging animal viruses such as porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) and porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV). Meng received his medical degree from Binzhou Medical University in 1985, M.S. in Microbiology and Immunology from Wuhan University College of Medicine (formerly Hubei Medical College) in 1988, and Ph.D. in Immunobiology from Iowa State University in 1995. Following his postdoctoral training in the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, Meng joined the faculty at Virginia Tech in 1999, and is a University Distinguished Professor since 2013. Meng is an elected Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology in 2012, elected Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors in 2014, and elected member of the National Academy of Sciences in 2016.

Research Interests

Meng's laboratory focuses on studying the molecular mechanisms of viral pathogenesis and developing effective vaccines against emerging, re-emerging, and zoonotic viruses of veterinary and human public health importance. Viruses currently being studied in the Meng?s lab include the hepatitis E viruses (HEV), porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2), porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV), torque teno sus virus (TTSuV), porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV), and SARS-coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). Meng?s work has led to the development of the first U.S. Department of Agriculture fully-licensed vaccine against porcine circovirus type 2, which is now being used worldwide. Meng's research also led to the discovery of the first animal strain of hepatitis E virus (swine hepatitis E virus) and the recognition of hepatitis E as a zoonotic disease. Currently, the Meng lab is studying the mechanisms of HEV replication and pathogenesis, define the mechanisms of HEV cross-species infection, understand the innate immune responses during HEV infection, and develop vaccines against HEV. Additionally, the Meng lab is studying the structural and functional relationship of virus genes and develop candidate vaccines for a number of important emerging animal viruses including coronaviruses (PEDV and SARS-CoV-2).

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Primary Section

Section 61: Animal, Nutritional, and Applied Microbial Sciences

Secondary Section

Section 44: Microbial Biology