UNMC Header

Distinguished Scientist Rongshi Li, Ph.D.

Image with caption: Rongshi Li, Ph.D.

Rongshi Li, Ph.D.

This profile is part of a series to highlight the researchers who will be honored at a ceremony for UNMC's 2016 Scientist Laureate, Research Leadership, Distinguished Scientist and New Investigator Award recipients.

Today we meet:

The Distinguished Scientist Award

The Distinguished Scientist Award -- which is sponsored by the chancellor -- recognizes researchers who have been among the most productive scientists at UNMC during the past five years.

  • Name: Rongshi Li, Ph.D.
  • Title: Professor, UNMC College of Pharmacy
  • Joined UNMC: Sept. 16, 2013
  • Hometown: Jilin, China

Research focus:
Antibiotic and anti-cancer drug discovery

The goal of my research is to discover novel antibiotic and anticancer therapeutics. I have been using innovative approaches including but not limited to fragment-based, structure-guided and natural product-derived design and synthesis of small molecules to develop antibiotic and anticancer agents.

My research will make a difference because these novel antibiotic and anticancer agents target drug resistance. Our novel natural product derivatives exhibit unique activities against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, and anticancer properties with high potency and selectivity. They display a desirable pharmacokinetic profile, good bioavailability and no toxicities.

The best advice I've ever been given is "never give up."

Three things you may not know about me

  • I have maintained the accuracy of my free throw at 90 percent and jump shot at 80 percent for many years.
  • After moving to Omaha, I learned to cook steak and became the best chef you will find in a chemistry laboratory.
  • My bosses and colleagues in the biotech/pharma industry called me "Mr. Careful."

Ceremony Jan. 17

A campus ceremony will be held at 4 p.m. Jan. 17 in the Durham Research Center Auditorium to recognize the award recipients, as well as the winner of the Community Service to Research Award, who will be announced later. A reception will follow. The ceremony will be livestreamed; click here or paste http://www.unmc.edu/livevideo/unmc_live1.html in your browser.

Research Award winners include:
Scientist Laureate
Tammy Kielian, Ph.D., College of Medicine

Research Leadership Award
B. Timothy Baxter, M.D., College of Medicine
Robert Lewis, Ph.D., Eppley Institute

Distinguished Scientist Award
Maneesh Jain, Ph.D., College of Medicine
Shelby Kutty, M.D., Ph.D., College of Medicine
Rongshi Li, Ph.D., College of Pharmacy
Mark Mailliard, M.D., College of Medicine
Kaleb Michaud, Ph.D., College of Medicine
Joseph Norman, Ph.D., College of Allied Health Professions
Larisa Poluektova, M.D., Ph.D., College of Medicine
Matthew Rizzo, M.D., College of Medicine
Sarah Thayer, M.D., Ph.D., College of Medicine
Melissa Tibbits, Ph.D., College of Public Health

New Investigator Awards
Laura Bilek, Ph.D., College of Allied Health Professions
Martin Conda Sheridan, Ph.D., College of Pharmacy
Sung-Ho Huh, Ph.D., Munroe-Meyer Institute
R. Katherine Hyde, Ph.D., College of Medicine
Mariano Sanchez-Lockhart, Ph.D., College of Medicine
Kimberly Scarsi, Pharm.D., College of Pharmacy
Jessica Nichols Snowden, M.D., College of Medicine
Hanjun Wang, M.D., College of Medicine
Wanfen Xiong, M.D., Ph.D., College of Medicine

UNMC Wordmark