Li Lab:

Insect Genomic and Bioinformatics

 
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Research Interests

1. Insect molecular biology and toxicology: Though thousands of insecticides have been discovered and applied in pest control, almost all pesticides target either acetylcholinesterase (AChE), nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) or sodium ion channel. This brings a big problem--insecticide resistance, which is also a good topic for Darwinian positive selection. Long-term goal of our research work in this filed is to protect plants (rice, wheat, cotton etc) against pests and to protect human being from insecticides and other poisons. My current research interestí»s are on studying the neural targets genes of insecticides, screening for resistance associated single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) and detecting/monitoring mutations in neural target genes. I will specially focus on the function and molecular evolution of multiple AChEs in insect species recently.

2. Insect genomics and bioinformatics: Up to now there are more than 30 insect species have been genome sequenced ranged from fly, mosquito, honeybee, aphid, silkworm, etc. These genome sequencing projects produced huge amount of data about insects. A long-term goal of our research work in this field is to uncover the mystery of insects with computational biology and bioinformatics skills. My research interests include the insect comparative genomics, noncoding RNA transcription analysis and alternative splicing.