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1991 …2024

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Personal profile

Dr. Xian C. Li is professor of immunology at Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University in New York and director of the Immunobiology & Transplant Science Center at Houston Methodist Hospital in Houston Texas. He also serves as the vice chair of research in the department of surgery and holds the Max Lillie Frosch Centennial Chair in transplant research at Houston Methodist. Dr. Li has an excellent academic credential; he completed his medical training in China and then joined the Multi-organ Transplant Program in London Health Science Center at University of Western Ontario in Canada, where Dr. Li further obtained his PhD degree in pathology. He completed his postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School in Boston Massachusetts where he held faculty appointments at Harvard till 2013. Before moving to Houston Methodist, Dr. Li was an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Deputy Director of the Transplant Research Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

Dr. Li has a long track record of excellence in transplant research. He has published extensively in areas of immunology and transplantation, with over 170 original research papers, review articles and book chapters published, and some of the papers are published in high impact journals, which include Science, Nature Medicine, Nature Immunology, Immunity, Cell Reports, Nature Communications, J Exp Med, J Clin Invest, Nature Reviews, PNAS, Blood, Immunol Reviews, Trends in Immunology, etc. Dr. Li has made substantial contributions to the transplant community. He has been an organizer, chair, and speaker of numerous scientific meetings and he is routinely invited to speak about his research at leading institutions nationally and internationally. He has received many awards in recognition of his contributions to transplant research, which include American Society of Transplantation (AST) Young Investigator Award, AST/Wyeth Basic Science Investigator Award, and AST/Wyeth Achievement Award.

Dr. Li is an active member of multiple professional societies. He has served as a committee member of the AST Basic Science Advisory council, co-chair of AST composite tissue transplantation committee, chair of AST Grant Executive Committee, chair of American Transplant Congress (ATC) joint executive planning committee, and chair of ATC 2018 in Seattle. Dr. Li is currently a standing member of American Association of Immunologists (AAI) and the transplant society (TTS), a member of Faculty 1000 in immunology. He is also an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI), an honorary society for physician scientists in the United States. He has been a standing member of the Cellular and Molecular Immunology (CMI), and Transplantation, Tolerance and Tumor immunology (TTT) study sections at the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense (DOD) and Immune Tolerance Network (ITN) grant review panels. He has also served as an associate editor for the Journal of Immunology and Cell Mol Immunol. He is now an editorial board member for the journal of Transplantation, American Journal of Transplantation.

Research interests

Dr. Xian C. Li’s research is focused on uncovering the fundamental mechanisms of transplant rejection and transplant tolerance, the goal of his team is to develop new and innovative protocols that allow the immune system to be therapeutically reprogrammed, such that the transplant patients could accept organ transplants without taking life-long immunosuppression drugs.

Education/Academic qualification

Postdoctoral Fellowship, Harvard University

MD, Qingdao Medical School, Qingdao, China

Postdoctoral Fellowship, University of Toronto

Research Fellowship, University of Western Ontario

Immunology, PhD, Western University, London, Canada

Research Area Keywords

  • Immunobiology & Inflammation
  • Transplantation

Free-text keywords

  • Transplant
  • Immunology
  • Regulatory cell function
  • Allograft rejection
  • Tolerance induction


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