Associate Professor Rachel Li

Group Leader

Dr Li is a molecular pharmacologist and osteoimmunologist with interests in understanding the processes that control a ‘foreign body reaction or response’ initiated by biomaterials implanted into bone or exposed to human bone cells. Dr Li worked as a senior liver disease specialist at China Medical University (CMU). She led a number of clinical trials in anti-viral and anti-inflammatory drugs and successfully transferred an intellectual property to the pharmaceutical industry. Dr Li completed her PhD at Southern Cross University and gained her NIH postdoctoral fellowship in molecular pharmacology and Bioengineering, and Assistant Professor at John A Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii. Dr Li established the Trauma and Orthopaedic Research Unit Laboratory (TORU Lab) which pioneered basic orthopaedic research in the ACT region. TORU Lab is located in the John Curtin School of Medical Research at the Australian National University. She is currently leading her team with research focuses on osteoimmunology, biomaterials and 3D printing for orthopedic implants. She has made some major research contributions to the fields of osteoimmunology and also a great contribution to medical education as a senior lecturer in CMU and Associate Professor (Pharmacology) in University of Canberra.

Research interests

1. Surface modification of biomaterials for future orthopedic implants to prevent infection, prevent wear and promote osseointegration

2. Osteoimmunology, miRNA and RNA sequencing, miRNA biomarkers in bone diseases

3. Angiogenic factors in rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory joint diseases

Selected publications:

Chen W,...Li RW*, et al. Specific inhibition of NLRP3 in chikungunya disease reveals a role for inflammasomes in alphavirus-induced inflammation. Nat Microbiol. 2017 Oct;2(10):1435-1445


Please refer to Dr Li's ANU Researchers page for a full publication list.