Skip Ribbon Commands Skip to main content

Yi Li


 Yi Li


Graduate Student
(765) 494-0657


Hi, I’m Yi and I am originally from Shenyang, China. I went to Northeast Yucai School in Shenyang for middle school and high school. I also went to Arizona for 6 months as an exchange student. In 2004 I attended Moravian College in Pennsylvania where I received my bachelor’s degree in biochemistry with a minor in business management.

I came to Purdue in 2008 as a PhD student in the department of Biochemistry. I had always been interested in plants and Dr. Clint Chapple’s lab was a perfect fit for me after my four rotations during my first year. Our lab studies the phenylpropanoid pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana (a model system for plant research). One application of our research is to biochemically and genetically modify lignin (an end product of the phenylpropanoid pathway) content of the plant cell wall as a way to improve biofuel production efficiency. My current project is to understand the biosynthetic pathway of a group of newly discovered plant secondary metabolites related to the phenylpropanoid pathway.

I enjoy socializing with people in and outside of the lab. My husband and I have a cat, a tortoise, two birds and a couple of fish and we plan to get two dogs when we have a yard for them to run. We both love to entertain family and friends. I also enjoy badminton, ice skating and taking fitness classes with friends.