Xiuchun (Cindy) Tian, Ph.D. University of Connecticut

Xiuchun (Cindy) Tian, Ph.D.

Interim Department Head and Professor


Professor Tian is an expert in animal biotechnology.

Contact More Open options


Dr. Cindy Tian obtained her MS and Ph.D. from Cornell University where she conducted research in early pregnancy recognition and regulation of steroidogenesis in ovarian tissues. She then received post-doctoral trainings as a recipient of a National Research Service Award from NIH in developmental genetics and molecular embryology at Cornell University and University of Connecticut.

Areas of Expertise

Pluripotent Stem Cells
Nuclear Reprogramming by Somatic Cell Nuclear Transfer
Genetic Engineering in Farm Animals
Assisted Reproductive Technologies
Pre-Implantation Embryo Development


Cornell University



Cornell University




The National Association of Extension 4-H Youth Development Professionals (NAE4-HYDP) Educational Technology Award in the State of Connecticut, The Unpeeled GMO education team


Gold Award Winner from Association for Communication Excellence (ACE), The Unpeeled GMO education team


Core Values Award, Genex


Excellence in Research Award, CANR





Media Appearances

UConn is developing cultivated meat technology. So when can you serve beef that harmed no cow?

Hartford Courant  online


“There are people who are misinformed, I would say, thinking that this is something that can save the environment and help climate change,” said Cindy Tian, professor of biotechnology and interim head of the Animal Science Department.

View More

Study casts doubt on cultivated meat’s low carbon promise

Chemistry World  online


Meanwhile, Cindy Tian – an animal science professor at the University of Connecticut who has co-authored a study that induced bovine pluripotent stem cells for the first time in the hopes of overcoming challenges for cultivated meat, welcomes the study. She has previously told Chemistry World that the process of making meat from animal cells remains ‘extremely inefficient’ and appears unsustainable. ‘I am glad someone is telling the truth,’ Tian states, referring to the new UC Davis preprint. ‘Years of research and many breakthroughs will be necessary for cultured meat to be even close to the current beef production system,’ she adds, noting that cattle domestication has an 11,000-year history while cultivated meat has only been around about a decade .

View More


Identification of New Compounds against PRRSV Infection by Directly Targeting CD163

Journal of Virology

2023 The porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome viruses (PRRSV) led to a global panzootic and huge economical losses to the pork industry. PRRSV targets the scavenger receptor CD163 for productive infection. However, currently no effective treatment is available to control the spread of this disease. Using bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) assays, we screened a set of small molecules potentially targeting the scavenger receptor cysteine-rich domain 5 (SRCR5) of CD163. We found that the assay examining protein-protein interactions (PPI) between PRRSV glycoprotein 4 (GP4) and the CD163-SRCR5 domain mainly identifies compounds that potently inhibit PRRSV infection, while examining the PPI between PRRSV-GP2a and the SRCR5 domain maximized the identification of positive compounds, including additional ones with various antiviral capabilities.

view more

117 Transcription readthrough in in vivo-developed bovine oocytes and preimplantation embryos

Reproduction, Fertility and Development

2022 As much as 87% of the genome is transcribed. Readthrough transcriptions, either failure to terminate beyond the transcription end site (TES), or aberrant transcription at other intergenic regions, are present in normal physiological conditions but are enhanced in the presence of stressors such as abnormal osmolarity and viral infection. Readthrough transcription is hypothesised to increase chromatin accessibility. More than 10,000 genes are transcribed during preimplantation bovine embryo development. These are likely regulated through the drastic changes in DNA methylation. Failure of transcription termination and intergenic transcription have not been characterised in early embryos or correlated with DNA methylation.

view more

Dynamic and aberrant patterns of H3K4me3, H3K9me3, and H3K27me3 during early zygotic genome activation in cloned mouse embryos


2022 Somatic cell nuclear transfer (NT) is associated with aberrant changes in epigenetic reprogramming that impede the development of embryos, particularly during zygotic genome activation. Here, we characterized epigenetic patterns of H3K4me3, H3K9me3, and H3K27me3 in mouse NT embryos up to the second cell cycle (i.e. four-celled stage) during zygotic genome activation. In vivo fertilized and parthenogenetically activated (PA) embryos served as controls. In fertilized embryos, maternal and paternal pronuclei exhibited asymmetric H3K4me3, H3K9me3, and H3K27me3 modifications, with the paternal pronucleus showing delayed epigenetic modifications. Higher levels of H3K4me3 and H3K9me3 were observed in NT and PA embryos than in fertilized embryos.

view more

Transcriptomic Responses of Mycoplasma bovis Upon Treatments of trans-Cinnamaldehyde, Carvacrol, and Eugenol

Frontiers in Microbiology

2022 Mycoplasma bovis (M. bovis) is an insidious, wall-less primary bacterial pathogen that causes bovine pneumonia, mid-ear infection, mastitis, and arthritis. The economic losses caused by M. bovis due to culling, diminished milk production, and feed conversion are underestimated because of poor diagnosis/recognition. Treatment with common antibiotics targeting the cell wall is ineffective. Plant-derived antimicrobials (PDAs) such as food-grade trans-cinnamaldehyde (TC), eugenol (EU), and carvacrol (CAR) are inexpensive and generally regarded as safe to humans and animals yet possess strong anti-bacterial properties. In preliminary studies, we found that all three PDAs inhibited the growth of M. bovis in vitro. Through RNA sequencing, we report here that CAR affected the expression of 153 genes which included the down-regulation of energy generation-related proteins, pentose phosphate pathway, and up-regulation of ribosomes and translation-related proteins.

view more

104 Metabolic, electrolyte and acid-base parameters in blood and fluids of the reproductive tracts during in vivo maturation of bovine oocytes

Reproduction, Fertility and Development

2021 Follicular fluid is the microenvironment that supports oocyte maturation and competence. In vivo matured, yet in vitro fertilised and cultured bovine embryos reach blastocyst at 75% compared to their in vitro-matured counterparts at 20–30%. These data suggest a deficiency of in vitro maturation. Here we determined the dynamics of acid-base, ion, and metabolic parameters in blood, fluids of the dominant (largest growing) follicle (FF), oviduct (OF), and uterus (UF) during the window of oocyte maturation. Holstein heifers (n= 24) were oestrus-synchronised with two sets of PGF 2α (PG) intramuscular injections 11 days apart on Days− 11 and 0. A controlled internal drug release (CIDR) was inserted on Day− 6 and removed on Day 1 or 24 h after first dose of the second set of PGF 2α.

view more

Powered By

Discover more about what's happening at UConn