Dr. Li's research is in the area of analytical mass spectrometry (MS). The major objectives of the research are to develop advanced methods and strategies, primarily based on MS, for the detection and characterization of biological molecules including proteins (proteomics) and metabolites (metabolomics), and to apply these methods to study real-world biological systems. The latter is being accomplished through active collaboration with researchers at the forefront of their disciplines.
For students who are interested in Analytical Chemistry, Dr. Li's lab provides a good learning environment for state-of-the-art analytical techniques and methods, including biological and pharmaceutical sample handling methods, chemical separation techniques (e.g., multi-dimensional liquid chromatography), mass spectrometry (e.g., TOF MS, Ion trap MS, FT-MS, and tandem MS), and data processing/bioinformatics tools.
For students with strong biology background (e.g., an undergraduate degree in biological sciences or biochemistry) who are interested in Chemical Biology, Dr. Li's group offers the unique opportunity for training in both chemistry and biology, with the assistance of collaborators in biosciences such as faculty members in Biological Sciences, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Oncology, and Computational Biology. Joint supervision of a chemical biology research project can also be arranged. We are particularly interested in applying analytical techniques and methods in solving biological problems. These include metabolomics and proteomics applications in systems biology and disease biomarker discovery research.