Stuart Smith

Assistant Professor


Stuart Smith graduated from the University of Birmingham (U.K) in 1993 completing a Bsc (hons) in Biochemistry. Then completed his PhD studying insulin gene transcription at Aberdeen University (U.K) in 1997. He subsequently undertook a post-­â€doctoral position studying the role of transcription factor Pax4 working with Michael S. German at the University of California, San Francisco; progressing through the positions of post graduate researcher, assistant research biochemist and currently holding the position of assistant Professor study the transcription factor Rfx6.


Area of Interest

Dr. Stuart Smith’s work focuses on genes that are important for the

development and maintenance of pancreatic cell types. If we can

understand how these genes function, we may ultimately be able to

generate new insulin producing cells for transplantation into diabetic

patients. The Rfx6 gene was recently identified and determined to be

important for insulin production in mice and humans.

top publication

1. Read, ML, Smith, SB, Docherty, K. The insulin enhancer binding site 2 (IEB2; FAR) box of the insulin gene regulatory region binds at least three factors that can be distinguished by their DNA binding characteristics, Biochemical Journal. 309:231-236, 1995.
2. Docherty, K, Macfarlane, WM, Read, ML, Smith, SB, Wilson, ME, Bujalska, I, and Gilligan, M. Regulation of insulin gene transcription by nutrients, Biochemical Soc Trans. 24:368-372, 1996.
3. MacFarlane, WM, Smith, SB, James, R, Clifton, AD, Doza, YN, Cohen, P, and Docherty, K. The p38/reactivating kinase mitogen-activated protein kinase cascade mediates the activation of the transcription factor Insulin Upstream Factor 1 and insulin gene transcription by high glucose in pancreatic â-cells, J. Biol. Chem. 272:20936-20944, 1997.
4. Smith, SB, Ee, HC, Conners, JR, and German, M. Paired-Homeodomain transcription factor pax4 acts as a transcriptional repressor in early pancreatic development. Mol Cell Biol. 19(12):8272-8280, 1999.
5. Smith, SB, Watada, H, Scheel, D, Mrejen C, and German, M. Autoregulation and maturity onset diabetes of the young transcription factors control the human PAX4 promoter, J Biol Chem. 275(47):36910-36919, 2000.
6. Lee, C, Smith, SB, Watada, H, Lin, J, Scheel, D, Wang, J, Mimira, R, and German, M. Regulation of the pancreatic pro-endocrine gene Neurogenin3, Diabetes. 50:928-936, 2001.
7. Smith, SB, Gasa, R, Watada, H, Wang, J, Griffen, S, and German, M. Neurogenin3 and Hepatic Nuclear Factor 1 cooperate in activating pancreatic expression of Pax4, J Biol Chem. 278(40):38254-38259, 2003.
8. Smith, SB, Watada, H, and German, M. Neurogenin3 Activates the islet differentiation program while repressing its own expression, Molecular Endocrinology. 18(1):142-149, 2004.
9. Mauvais-Jarvis, F, Smith, SB, le May, C, Leal, S, Gautier, J, Rajan, A, Virally, M, Kevorkian, J, Zhang, S, Riveline, J, Charpentier, G, Vexiau, P, German, M, and Vaisse, C. Ketosis-Prone Diabetes associated with a Mutation in a Genetic Regulator (Pax4) of Pancreatic β-Cell Development in Sub-Saharan Africans, Human Molecular Genetics. 13(24):3151-9, 2004.
10. Kawahira, H, Scheel, D, Smith, SB, German, M, and Hebrok, M. Hedgehog signaling regulates expansion of pancreatic epithelial cells, Dev Biol. 280(1):111-21, 2005.
11. Activin A-induced expression of PAX4 in AR42J-B13 cells involves the increase in transactivation of E47/E12. Rei Kanno, Takeshi Ogihara, Yasuhiroi Igarashi, Yasushi Tanaka, Stuart B. Smith, Itaru kojima, Michael S. German, Ryuzo Kawamori, Hirotaka Watada.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta. 1759(1-2): 44-50, 2006.
12. (Joint First author) 3Lynn, F.C., 3Smith, S.B., 2Wilson, M.E., Yang, K. Y., Nekrep, N., and 1,4German, M.S. Sox9 coordinates a transcriptional network in pancreatic progenitor cells. PNAS 104(25):10500-10505, 2007.
13. Louet, J.-F., Smith, S.B, Gautier, J.-F, Molokhia, M, Virally, M.-L., Kevorkian, J.-P, Guillausseau, P.-J., Vexiau, P, Charpentier, G, German, M.S, Vaisse, C, Urbanek, M and Mauvais-Jarvis, F. Gender and neurogenin3 influence the pathogenesis of ketosis-prone diabetes. Diabetes, Obesity and metabolism. 10(10):912-20 2007.
14. Stuart B. Smith, Hui-Qi Qu, Nadine Taleb, Nina Kishimoto, David W. Scheel, Yang Lu, Ann-Marie Patch, Rosemary Grabs, Juehu Wang, Francis C. Lynn, Takeshi Miyatsuka, John Mitchell, Rina Seerke, Julie Désir, Serge Vanden Eijnden, Marc Abramowicz, Nadine Kacet, Jacques Weill, Marie-Ève Renard, Mattia Gentile, Inger Hansen, Ken Dewar, Andrew T. Hattersley, Rennian Wang, Maria E. Wilson, Jeffrey D. Johnson, Constantin Polychronakos, and Michael S. German. Rfx6 Directs Islet Formation and Insulin Production in Mice and Humans. Nature 463, 775-780. 2010.
15. Ohta Y, Kosaka Y, Kishimoto N, Wang J, Smith SB, Honig G, Kim H, Gasa RM, Neubauer N, Liou A, Tecott LH, Deneris ES, German MS. Convergence of the Insulin and Serotonin Programs in the Pancreatic β-Cell. Diabetes. 60(12):3208-16. 2011