Chao Yinxia
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Dr Chao Yinxia

Dr Chao Yinxia

​PhD (Neuroscience/Immunology), M.Med (Neurology), MBBS

National Neuroscience Institute


​Dr Chao Yinxia graduated in 1999 as a Medical Doctor and have postgraduate specialist training in Neurology and Immunology. Currently she is a Junior Principal Investigator and Clinician Scientist at the National Neuroscience Institute (NNI). She is also an Assistant Professor at Duke-NUS Medical School and is in charge of the Immunology in Body & Disease Course.

Dr Chao’s primary research interest is in Parkinson's disease (PD) biomarkers and therapeutic target identification in the peripheral immune system, specifically screening of autoantibodies, autoreactive T cells and other molecules regulating autoimmunity (funded by NMRC). She is also interested in the role of monocytes and neutrophils in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease, which is in collaboration and funded by the Michael J. Fox Foundation (MJFF).

Dr Chao is also exploring genetic and unfolded protein functions such as alpha-synuclein oligomerisation in the development of PD. The ultimate goal of Dr Chao’s research is to identify novel diagnostic or therapeutic targets and to develop novel immunotherapy for PD and other neurodegenerative disorders.

Currently she is working with Prof Tan Eng-King from NNI; Drs. Olaf Rötzschke and Bernett Lee from Singapore Immunology Network (SIgN, A-STAR); Prof Dario Alessi and Dr. Esther Sammler from Dundee Univeristy and Dr. Andrew West from DUKE University.


  • ​PhD (Neuroscience/Immunology), National University of Singapore, 2009
  • M.Med (Neurology), Zhong-Shan University of Medical Science, 2004
  • MBBS, Tongji Medical University, 1999

Professional Appointments and Committee Memberships

  • ​Junior Principal Investigator, National Neuroscience Institute, 2013 - present
  • Assistant Professor, Duke-NUS Medical School, Apr 2013 - present
  • Co-Director: Body & Disease Course, Department of MERE, Duke-NUS Medical School, Oct 2013 - present


  • ​Transition Award (The role of monocytes in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease), NMRC/TA/0044/2015, 2015-2019

Research Interests

  • Immune biomarker and therapeutic target identification in PD
  • Genetic and unfolded protein functions such as alpha-synuclein oligomerization in the development of PD
  • Novel immunotherapy development for PD and other neurodegenerative disorders


  • ​Chao YX, Rötzschke O, Tan EK. The role of IgA in COVID-19. Brain Behav Immun (IF: 6.306). 2020; 87:182-183. doi: 10.1016/j.bbi.2020.05.057.
  • Chao YX, Lee B, Ng EYL, Lian ML, Guo EYC, Tandiono M, Li Z, Khor CC, Kumar P, Tan LCS, Foo JN, Tan EK. Association Analysis of PSAP Variants in Parkinson’s Disease Patients. Brain (IF: 11.337) 2020, awaa358.
  • Chao YX*, Gulam MY, Chia SJ, Lei F, Rotzschke O, Tan EK. Gut-brain axis: Potential factors involved in the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease. Front Neurol (IF: 2.75). 2020; 11:849. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2020.00849. eCollection 2020.
  • Tan EK, Chao YX, West A, Chan LL, Poewe W, Jankovic J. Parkinson disease and the immune system - associations, mechanisms and therapeutics. Nat Rev Neurol (IF: 27). 2020; 16(6):303-318. doi: 10.1038/s41582-020-0344-4.
  • Chia SJ, Tan EK, Chao YX*. Historical Perspective: Models of Parkinson's Disease. Int J Mol Sci (IF: 4.556). 2020; 21(7):2464. doi: 10.3390/ijms21072464.
  • Foo JN, Chew EGY, Chung SJ, Peng R, Blauwendraat C, Nalls MA, Mok KY, Satake W, Toda T, Chao Y, Tan LCS, Tandiono M, Lian MM, Ng EY, Prakash KM, Au WL, Meah WY, Mok SQ, Annuar AA, Chan AYY, Chen L, Chen Y, Jeon BS, Jiang L, Lim JL, Lin JJ, Liu C, Mao C, Mok V, Pei Z, Shang HF, Shi CH, Song K, Tan AH, Wu YR, Xu YM, Xu R, Yan Y, Yang J, Zhang B, Koh WP, Lim SY, Khor CC, Liu J, Tan EK. Identification of Risk Loci for Parkinson Disease in Asians and Comparison of Risk Between Asians and Europeans: A Genome-Wide Association Study. JAMA Neurol (IF: 13.608). 2020; 77(6):746-754. doi: 10.1001/jamaneurol.2020.0428.
  • Zhu SZ, Deng B, Huang ZF, Chang ZH, Liu H, Huang YJ, Li HL, Pan Y, Wang YP, Chao YX, Chan LL, Wu YR, Tan EK, Wang Q. “Hot cross bun” is a potential imaging marker for the severity of cerebellar ataxia in MSA-C. NPJ Parkinson’s Disease (IF: 6.85), Accepted
  • Wang T, Yuan F, Chen Z, Zhu S, Chang Z, Yang W, Deng B, Que R, Cao P, Chao Y, Chan L, Pan Y, Wang Y, Xu L, Lyu Q, Chan P, Yenari MA, Tan EK, Wang Q. Vascular, inflammatory and metabolic risk factors in relation to dementia in Parkinson's disease patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Aging (Albany NY) (IF: 4.831). 2020; 12(15):15682-15704.
  • Gao X, Huang Z, Feng C, Guan C, Li R, Xie H, Chen J, Li M, Que R, Deng B, Cao P, Li M, Lu J, Huang Y, Li M, Yang W, Yang X, Wen C, Liang X, Yang Q, Chao YX, Chan LL, Yenari MA, Jin K, Chaudhuri KR, Zhang J, Tan EK, Wang Q. Multimodal analysis of gene expression from postmortem brains and blood identifies synaptic vesicle trafficking genes to be associated with Parkinson's disease. Brief Bioinform (IF: 8.99). 2020: bbaa244.
  • Jumat MR, Wong P, Foo KX, Lee ICJ, Goh SPL, Ganapathy S, Tan TY, Loh AHL, Yeo YC, Chao Y, Cheng LT, Lai SH, Goh SH, Compton S, Hwang NC. From Trial to Implementation, Bringing Team-Based Learning Online-Duke-NUS Medical School's Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.  Med Sci Educ (IF: 1.7). 2020:1-6.
  • Li W, Chan LL, Chao YX, Tan EK. Parkinson’s disease following COVID-19: causal link or chance occurrence? J Transl Med (IF: 4.197). Accepted
  • Tan JSY, Chao Y, Rötzschke O, Tan EK. New Insights into Immune-Mediated Mechanisms in Parkinson’s Disease. Int J Mol Sci (IF: 4.556). 2020, Accepted
  • Yu RJ, Sun Y,  Ye KX, Feng QS, Lim SL, Mahendran R , Cheah IKM, Foo RSY, Chua RY,  GweeXY, Lo M, Sarmugam R, Khine wwT,  Chao YX, Larbi A, Lee YK, Kumar AP, Kennedy BK, Kua EH, Feng L. Cohort Profile: The Diet and Healthy Aging (DaHA) Study in Singapore. Aging (IF: 5.440), Accepted.
  • Goh SY, Chao YX*, Thameem DS, Tan EK, Tay SSW. Role of MicroRNAs in Parkinson’s disease. Int J Mol Sci (IF: 4.556). 2019; 20(22). pii: E5649.
  • Chao YX, Zhou Z, Tan EK. Plasma Coenzyme Q10 Levels and Multiple System Atrophy. JAMA Neurology (IF: 13.608), 2016; 73(12):1499.
  • Chao YX, Ng EY, Prakash KM, Tan L, Au WL, Tan EK. Evaluation of TENM4 association with essential tremor in Singapore Chinese population. Parkinsonism & Related Disorders (IF: 4.350), 2016; 31:139-140
  • Chao YX, Ng EY, Tan L, Prakash KM, Au WL, Zhao Y, Tan EK. Lrrk2 R1628P variant is a risk factor for essential tremor. Sci Rep (IF: 3.998). 2015; 5:9029.
  • Chao YX, Ng EY, Foo JN, Liu JJ, Zhao Y, Tan EK. Mitochondrial serine protease in Asians with co-existent essential tremor and Parkinson disease. Neurogenetics (IF: 3.426). 2015;16(3):241-2
  • Chao YX, Ng EY, Li H., Nagaendran K, Yih Y, Chong MS, Prakash KM, Tan L, Au WL, Zhao Y, Zhou ZD, Murni T, Pavanni R, Tan EK. Association analysis of COQ2 variant in dementia and essential tremor. Parkinson’s Disease (IF: 1.702), 2015: 926280.
  • Chao YX, Tan EK. Striatal hand. J Alzheimers Dis Parkinsonism (IF: 3.42), 2015, 5:2
  • Chao YX, Chew LM, Deng X, Tan EK. Nonmotor symptoms in sporadic versus genetic forms of Parkinson’s disease. Neurodegener Dis Manag (IF: 1.58). 2015; 5(2):147-53.
  • Chao YX, Wong SC, Tan EK. Evidence of Inflammatory system involvement in Parkinson’s disease. Biomedsci Res Int (IF: 2.14). 2014; 2014: 308654
  • Chao YX, Kaliaperumal N, Chretien AS, Tang SS, Lee B, Poidinger M, Fairhurst AM, Connolly JE. Human plasmacytoid dendritic cells regulate IFNα production through activation-induced splicing of IL-18Rα. J Leukoc Biol (IF: 4.289). 2014; 96(6):1037-46
  • Chao YX, He BP, Tay SS. Mesenchymal stem cell transplantation attenuates blood brain barrier damage and neuroinflammation and protects dopaminergic neurons against MPTP toxicity in the substantia nigra in a model of Parkinson’s disease. J Neuroimmunol (IF: 3.033). 2009; 216(1-2):39-50.
  • Chao YX, He BP, Cao Q, Tay SS, Protein aggregate-containing neuron-like cells are differentiated from bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells from mice with neurofilament light subunit gene deficiency. Neurosci Lett (IF: 2.18). 2007; 417(3):240-245.
  • Wen MC, Ng SYE, Heng HSE, Chao YX, Chan LL, Tan EK, Tan LCS, Neural substrates of excessive daytime sleepiness in early drug naïve Parkinson's disease: a resting state functional MRI study. Parkinsonism & Related Disorders (IF: 4.350), 2016; 24:63-8.
  • Storm P, Klausen TK, Trulsson M, Ho C S J, Dosnon M, Westergren T, Chao Y, Rydström A, Yang H, Pedersen SF, Svanborg C. A unifying mechanism for cancer cell death through ion channel activation by HAMLET. PLoS One (IF: 2.74). 2013;8(3):e58578.
  • Trulsson M, Yu H, Gisselsson L, Chao Y, Urbano A, Aits S, Mossberg AK, Svanborg C. HAMLET binding to α-actinin facilitates tumor cell detachment. PLoS One (IF: 2.74). 2011; 6(3):e17179.
  • Storm P, Aits S, Puthia MK, Urbano A, Northen T, Powers S, Bowen B, Chao Y, Reindl W, Lee DY, Sullivan NL, Zhang J, Trulsson M, Yang H, Watson JD, Svanborg C.  Conserved features of cancer cells define their sensitivity to HAMLET-induced death; c-Myc and glycolysis. Oncogene (IF: 7.971). 2011; 30(48):4765-79.
  • Mossberg AK, Puchades M, Halskau Ø, Baumann A, Lanekoff I, Chao Y, Martinez A, Svanborg C, Karlsson R. HAMLET interacts with lipid membranes and perturbs their structure and integrity. PLoS One (IF: 2.74). 2010; 5(2):e9384.
  • Bing He, Yinxia Chao, Eng Lee Tan, Peng Li.  The Application of Aptasensors for the Ageing Diseases Diagnosis, Current Immunology Review.  2017; 13(2)
  • Zhi Dong Zhou, Thevapriya Selvaratnam, Yin Xia Chao, Tit Meng Lim and Eng King Tan Dopamine (DA) Dependent Toxicity Relevant to DA Neuron Degeneration in Parkinson’s disease (PD), Austin Journal Of Drug Abuse And Addiction, Accepted
  • Zhi Dong Zhou, Yin Xia Chao, and Eng King Tan. Potential Implications of Mitochondrial Unfolded Protein Response in the Pathogenesis and Therapy of Dopaminergic Neuron Degeneration in Parkinson’s Disease. JSM Biotechnol Bioeng. 2017; 4(1): 1075
  • Zhi Dong Zhou; Thevapriya Selvaratnam; Ji Chao Tristan Lee; Yin Xia Chao; Eng King Tan.  Molecular targets for modulating the protein translation vital to proteostasis and neuron degeneration in Parkinson's disease. Translational Neurodegeneration, 2019; 8:6.

Research Trials