The Coral Symbiomics Lab
Red Sea Research Center
Division of Biological and Environmental Science and Engineering


Guoxin Cui

Postdoctoral Fellows


I am a biologist with interests in almost every aspect of life science. I was equipped with general biological knowledge and generated broad interests to biological research during my undergraduate education in Northeast Forestry University in China. Later on, I joined a lab focusing on plant development in the same institute as a Master's student, and focused on light-regulated anthocyanin biosynthesis for three years.

In order to experience a different field of biological research, I went to Tsinghua University as a research assistant working on structural biology of cytoskeleton associated proteins.he experience of working in different fields intrigues me to move further and investigate more interesting biological phenomena, hence my decision to enroll in the PhD program of BioScience in KAUST. Currently, my focus is on decoding the mechanism of cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbiosis from a transcriptomic angle.

Research Interests

​The symbiosis between coral and Symbiodinium is the foundation of the coral reef ecosystem. Aiptasia has emerged as a model organism to study this symbiotic relationship because of its close relativeness with coral. I am focusing on unravel the molecular underpinnings of the symbiosis between Aiptasia and Symbiodinium with a higher resolution. By applying laser microdissection (LMD), RNA-seq and downstream biochemical assays and molecular biological studies, I am looking for the potential key players in symbiosis establishment, maintenance, and breakdown.


  • ​Ph.D. BioScience - King Abdullah University of Science and Technology, Thuwal, Saudi Arabia (2014-present)
  • M.Sc. Developmental Biology - NEFU, Harbin, China (2008-2011)
  • B.Sc. Biotechnology - Northeast Forestry University (NEFU), China (2004-2008)