DPLM Faculty Profiles — Dr. Qian

Dr. Qian

Li Qian, PhD

Assistant Professor

Office: 919-962-0340

E-mail: li_qian@med.unc.edu

Lab web site: http://uncliqian.web.unc.edu/


Qian Lab Figure 1Our laboratory is interested in developing innovative approaches to regenerate or repair an injured heart. Our goal is to understand the molecular basis of cardiomyocyte specification and maturation and apply this knowledge to improve efficiency and clinical applicability of cellular reprogramming in heart disease. To achieve these goals, we utilize in vivo modeling of cardiac disease in the mouse, including myocardial infarction (MI), cardiac hypertrophy, chronic heart failure and congenital heart disease (CHD). In addition, we take advantage of traditional mouse genetics, cell and molecular biology, biochemistry and newly developed reprogramming technologies (iPSC and iCM) to investigate the fundamental events underlying the progression of various cardiovascular diseases as well as to discover the basic mechanisms of cell reprogramming.


2012–present:  Assistant Professor

Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
McAllister Heart Institute
Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
– Ellison New Scholar in Aging

2007–2012: Postdoctoral Fellow

Gladstone Institute for Cardiovascular Disease
University of California, San Francisco
– Roddenberry Stem Cell Biology and Medicine Scholar
– California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) Scholar

2001–2006: Graduate/Ph.D. Student

Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
2003–2006: Visiting Graduate Student
Development and Aging Program
Sanford-Burnham Institute, La Jolla
University of California, San Diego

1997–2001:  Undergraduate Student

Life Science School
Fudan University, Shanghai, China
– Chun-Tsung Scholar



2014  MHI/Cardiology 20K Award for Cardiovascular Research, UNC-Chapel Hill
2014  Junior Faculty Development Award, UNC-Chapel Hill
2013–2017  Ellison New Scholar in Aging, The Ellison Medical Foundation
2013–2017  Scientist Development Grant (National), American Heart Association (AHA)
2012  Top 10 Advances in Heart Disease and Stroke Research (ranked #2), AHA
2012  Award of Excellence in Science, Gladstone Institute, UCSF
2011  Louis N. and Arnold M. Katz Basic Science Research Prize for Young Investigators, AHA
2011  Roddenberry Fellowship, the Roddenberry Foundation
2011  Above and Beyond Award, Gladstone Institute, UCSF
2011  Travel Award for 2011 International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) Annual Meeting
2011  Travel Award for 2011 Weinstein Cardiovascular Conference, Weinstein Committee
2011  Award for Exemplary Leadership, Gladstone Institute, UCSF
2010  Lynda and Stewart Resnick Fellowship, Lynda and Stewart Resnick Foundation
2010  Above and Beyond Award, Gladstone Institute, UCSF
2009–2012  California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) Scholarship, CIRM,
2003–2006  American Heart Association Midwest Affiliate Pre-doctor Fellowship
2003  Horace H. Rackham School Pre-candidate Fellowship, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
2002  Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies Travel Grant, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
1999–2001  Chun-Tsung Scholarship, Chu Tsung Endowment
1999  Inchcape HKU China Scholarship, Hong Kong University-Fudan University
1999  SUMI TOMO Corporation Scholarship, SUMI TOMO Corporation
1998  BaoSteel Corporation Educational Scholarship, BaoSteel Corporation
1997–2001  People Scholarship, Fudan University


  1. Guo C., Deng Y., Liu J. and Qian L. (2014) Cardiomyocyte-specific role of miR-24 in promoting cell survival. J Cell Mol Med (in press)
  2. Fuller A.M. and Qian L. (2014) miRiad roles for microRNAs in cardiac development and regeneration. Cells 3(3), 724-750
  3. Wang L. and Qian L. (2014) miR-24 regulates intrinsic apoptosis pathway in mouse cardiomyocytes. Plos One 9(1):e85389
  4. Bird K. and Qian L. (2013) Cellular reprogramming for cardiovascular disease. J Tissue Sci Eng. 4, 127
  5. Guo C., Patel K. and Qian L.  (2013) Direct somatic cell reprogramming: treatment of cardiac diseases. Curr Gene Ther. 13, 133-138.
  6. Fu J.D., Stone N.R., Liu L., Spencer C.I., Qian L., Hayashi Y., Delgado-Olguin P., Ding S., Bruneau B.G. and Srivastava D. (2013) Direct reprogramming of human fibroblasts toward the cardiomyocyte lineage. Stem Cell Reports 1, 235-247
  7. Qian L. and Srivastava D. (2013) Direct Cardiac Reprogramming: From Developmental Biology to Cardiac Regeneration. Circ. Res. 113, 915-21
  8. Qian L., Berry E.C., Fu J.D., Ieda M., and Srivastava D. (2013) Reprogramming of mouse fibroblasts into cardiomyocyte-like cells in vitro. Nat Protoc. 8, 1204-15 (“Featured Protocol” highlighted by www.Nature.com)
  9. Srivastava D, Ieda M, Fu J, Qian L. (2012) Cardiac repair with thymosin β4 and cardiac reprogramming factors. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1270,66-72.
  10. Qian L., Huang Y, Foley A, Vedantham V, Spencer CI, Conway SJ, Fu JD, Srivastava D. (2012) In vivo reprogramming of murine cardiac fibroblasts into cardiomyocytes. Nature. 485, 593–598 (one of the Top 10 Most Important Research Articles in 2012, American Heart Association)
  11. Qian L. and Bodmer R. (2012) Probing the polygenic basis of cardiomyopathies in Drosophila J Cell Mol Med. 16, 972-7
  12. Qian L.# *, Wythe J.D. *, Liu J., Ocoor K., Mohapatra B., Otway R.T., Fatkin D., Semsarian S., Winlaw D., Dunwoodie S., Vogler G., Cartry J., Huang Y., Crawley T., Taghli-Lamallem O., Srivastava D., Towbin J.A., Harvey R.P., Bruneau B.G., Bodmer R#. (2011) Tinman/Nkx2-5 acts via miR-1 and upstream of Cdc42 to regulate heart function across species  J  Cell Biol. 193, 1181-96 (paper “In Focus” for that issue)
  13. King I.N.*, Qian L.*, Liang J., Huang Y., Shieh J., Kwon C. and Srivastava D. (2011) A Genome-wide Screen Reveals a Role for microRNA-1 in Modulating Cardiac Cell Polarity. Developmental Cell  20, 497-510
  14. Qian L.*, Van Laake LW. *, Huang Y. and Srivastava D. (2011) miR-24 inhibits ER-mediated apoptosis and preserves cardiac function after myocardial infarction by repressing Bim. J Exp Med. 208, 549-560
  15. Van Laake L.W.*, Qian L.*, Cheng P., Huang Y., Hsiao E.C., Conklin B., Srivastava D. (2010) Reporter-Based Isolation of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell- and Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes Reveals Limited Gene Expression Variance. Circ. Res. 107:304–347 (Cover Paper)
  16. Qian L. and Srivastava D. (2010) Monkeying around with cardiac progenitors. J Clin Invest. 120,1034-1036
  17. Qian L. and Bodmer R. (2009) Partial loss of GATA factor Pannier impairs adult heart function in Drosophila. Hum Mol Genet. 18, 3153-3163
  18. Kwon C., Qian L. *, Cheng P. *, Nigam V., Arnold J. and Srivastava D. (2009) A Regulatory Pathway Involving Notch1/β-Catenin/Isl1 Determines Cardiac Progenitor Cell Fate. Nat. Cell Bio. 11, 951-7
  19. Leal S.M., Qian L., Lacin H., Bodmer R., Skeath J.B. (2009) Neuromancer1 and Neuromancer2 regulate cell fate specification in the developing embryonic CNS of Drosophila melanogaster. Dev. Biol. 325,138-50
  20. Qian L., Mohapatra B., Akasaka T., Liu J., Ocorr K., Towbin J.A., Bodmer R. (2008) Transcription factor neuromancer/TBX20 is required for cardiac function in Drosophila with implications for human heart disease. P.N.A.S. 105,19833-8
  21. Liu J., Qian L., Han Z. and Bodmer R. (2008) Spatial specificity of mesodermal even-skipped expression relies on multiple repressors. Dev. Biol. 313, 876-86
  22. Qian L., Liu J. and Bodmer R. (2008) Heart development in Drosophila. In: Cardiovascular Development (Advances in Developmental Biology. Vol. 18) (Bodmer R. ed) Elsevier, Amsterdam, New York. p.1-29.
  23. Ocorr K., Perrin L., Lim HY., Qian L., Wu X., Bodmer R. (2007) Genetic control of heart function and aging in Drosophila. Trends Cardiovasc Med. 17, 177-82.
  24. Zaffran S., Reim I., Qian L., Lo P.C., Bodmer R. and Frasch M. (2006) Cardioblast-intrinsic Tinman activity controls proper diversification and differentiation of myocardial cells in Drosophila. Development. 133, 4073-4083
  25. Wang D., Qian L., Xiong H., Liu J., Neckameyer W.S., Oldham S., Wang J., Bodmer R. and Zhang Z. (2006) Suppression of PINK1 inactivation induced dopaminergic neurodegeneration by antioxidants in Drosophila. P.N.A.S.103, 13520-13525 (Cover Paper)
  26. Liu J., Qian L., Wessells RJ., Bidet Y., Jagla K., and Bodmer R. (2006) Hedgehog and RAS pathways cooperate in the anterior-posterior specification and positioning of cardiac progenitor cells. Dev.Biol. 290, 373-385
  27. Qian L., Liu J., and Bodmer R. (2005) Slit and Robo control cardiac cell polarity and morphogenesis. Curr. Biol.15, 2271-2278
  28. Qian L., Liu J., and Bodmer R. (2005) Neuromancer (H15/midline) T-box20-related genes promote cell fate specification and morphogenesis of the Drosophila heart.  Dev. Biol. 279, 509–524.