Xin Li ( 李 欣 )

[email protected]

PhD, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, 2010-2017

BS, Wuhan University, China, 2006-2010

Hi there, my name is Xin, I’m a postdoc in Dr. Li’s lab. Currently, I’m mainly working on two projects:

My major project focuses on improving Pennycress and Camelina as seed oil biofuel crops using gene editing and other molecular biological methods via manipulating the phenylpropanoid biosynthesis pathway. In this project, we are collaborating with Dr. David Marks (University of Minnesota) and Dr. Heike Sederoff (NCSU) to develop transgenic pennycress and camelina lines with tissue-specific modification of lignin production and accumulation. We are one of only a few labs in the world that can efficiently transform pennycress.


Another part of my research effort goes to characterizing lignin modified mutants (in Arabidopsis mainly) and explore the mechanism using genetic, genomic and epigenetic methods. Sirius and previous lab members generated over a dozen LMID (Lignin modification induced dwarfism) suppressor mutant lines that show partially recovered plant growth phenotype. We have reported the GIR1 and MYB4 genes and their roles in LMID in the Plant Journal in 2020, and I am working on a few more more suppressor lines, including a collaboration with Victoria Yell on her thesis project about the GIR2 gene.


IMG_2828 conv.jpeg

2023. TPJ.pdf

2022. Hemp.pdf

During 2019-2020, I was working with Dr. Yangnan Gu at University of California, Berkeley, on understanding the roles of NTR (nuclear transport receptors) and NPC (nuclear pore complex) in regulating the traffic of signaling cargos across plant nuclear envelop under various environmental conditions and its significance in determining immune responses in plant cells.




I spent almost seven years at University of Minnesota, studying with Dr. Gary Muehlbauer for my PhD in Plant Biology. My thesis work mainly focused on type II resistance of Fusarium Head Blight, one of the most serious disease in wheat and barley, and the causal fungal pathogen (Fusarium spp.) also has impact on corn and rice growth. My thesis work led to the discovery and multi-season field test confirmation that by overexpressing a glucosyltransferase gene identified in barley, we could reduce FHB disease spread by over 90%.