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Dr Xuan Li

Dr Xuan Li

BHF Intermediate Research Fellow

Xuan Li is accepting applications for PhD students.

Office Phone: 01223

Research themes

Vascular Medicine:

Research Interests

Regulation of inflammasome activation;

Regulation of cardiovascular disease development by controlling inflammation;

Modulation of innate immunity by microtubule-dependent mechanism;

Activation of the innate immune system plays an important role in the progression of cardiovascular disease, and understanding of the regulation and activation of the innate immune system can provide novel therapeutic targets.

Our group has demonstrated that microtubule-dependent transport system is important in directing innate immunity output. We focus on deciphering the basic cellular and molecular mechanisms contributing to the control of the innate immune system, especially through microtubule-dependent mechanism, and how this regulation contributes to the development of inflammatory disease, particularly inflammatory cardiovascular disease.



inflammasome ; Atherosclerosis ; innate immunity ; Inflammation ; microtubule-dependent regulation ; inflammatory disease ; cardiovascular disease


Key Publications

  1. Clement M, Chen X, Chenoweth HL, Teng Z, Thome S, Newland SA, Harrison J, Yu X, Finigan AJ, Mallat Z, Li X*. MARK4 (Microtubule Affinity-Regulating Kinase 4)-Dependent Inflammasome Activation Promotes Atherosclerosis-Brief Report. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2019 Aug;39(8):1645-1651. * Corresponding author.
  2. Baldrighi M, Mallat Z, Li X * (2017). NLRP3 inflammasome pathways in atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis. 267:127-138. *Corresponding author.
  3. Li X *, Thome S, Ma XD, Amrute-Nayak M, Finigan A, Kitt L, Masters L, James, JR, Shi YG, Meng GY, Mallat Z (2017). MARK4 regulates NLRP3 positioning and inflammasome activation through a microtubule-dependent mechanism. Nature Commun. 28;8:15986. *Corresponding author.
  4. Li X, Deroide N, Mallat Z (2014). The role of the inflammasome in cardiovascular diseases. J Mol Med. 92(4) : 307-19.
  5. Deroide N, Li X * Lerouet D, Van Vré E, Baker L, Harrison J, Poittevin M, Masters L, Nih L, Margaill I, Iwakura Y, Ryffel B, Pocard M, Tedgui A, Kubis N, Mallat Z (2013). MFGE8 inhibits inflammasome-induced IL-1β production and limits postischemic cerebral injury. J Clin Invest. 123(3):1176-81. *Co-first author.
  6. Sanghavi P, Laxani S, Li X, Bullock S, Gonsalvez G. Dynein associates with oskar mRNPs and is requied for their efficient net plus-end localization in Drosophila oocytes (2013). PloS One. 8(11):e80605.
  7. Li X, Kuromi H, Brigg L, Green DB, Rocha J, Sweeney S, Bullock SL (2010) BicD binds clathrin heavy chain to promote its transport and augments synaptic vesicle recycling. EMBO Journal. 29(5) : 992-1006. Covered by the EMBO Journal front headline article “The more, the better: the BICD family gets bigger”
  8. Dienstbier M, Boehl F, Li X, Bullock SL (2009) Egalitarian is a selective RNA-binding protein linking mRNA localization signals to the dynein motor. Genes & Development. 23 (13): 1546-1558.
  9. Dienstbier M, Li X* (2009) BicD and its role in cargo sorting by microtubule-based motors. Biochem Soc. Trans. 37(Pt 5): 1066-1071.  * Invited author, Co-first author and Corresponding author.
  10. Li X, Brunton V, Burgar H, Wheldon L, Heath JK (2004) FRS2-dependent Src   activation is required for FGFR-induced phosphorylation of Sprouty and suppression of ERK activity. J Cell Sci. 117:6007-6017.
  11. Tang Z, Zhao Y, Mei F, Yang S, Li X, Lv J, Hou L, Zhang B (2004) Molecular cloning and characterization of a human gene involved in transcriptional regulation of hTERT. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 324:1324-1332.
  12. Wang Q, Bai Z, Li X, Hou L, Zhang B (2004) The evidences of human Orphan         Receptor COUP-TFII inhibiting telomerase activity through decreasing hTERT transcription. Cancer Lett. 214:81-90.
  13. Li X*, Wheldon L, Heath JK (2003) Sprouty: a controversial role in receptor tyrosine kinase signalling pathways. Biochem Soc. Trans. 31: 1445-1446. * Invited author, First author and Corresponding author.

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