Midwest AViDD’s Dr. Fang Li Among World’s Top 500 Most Impactful Scientists of 2022

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A Stanford University study lists Dr. Fang Li as #431 most impactful scientist out of over 10 million

By Kali Kotoski

The Midwest Antiviral Drug Discovery (AViDD) Center's Co-Principal Investigator, Dr. Fang Li, was recognized as a top-cited scientist across all disciplines in a Stanford University study published by Elsevier.

The study, published annually, identifies the world's top 2 percent of scientists by using a composite metric that emphasizes citations and primary authorships. Li is the primary author of multiple highly cited studies, including five with over 2,000 citations each.

Li, the 431st most impactful scientist of 2022 according to Elsevier, conducts coronavirus research critical to the fundamental understanding of the virus. With over a decade of experience studying the structural biology of coronaviruses, Li and his lab have discovered the molecular events that lead to coronavirus entry into host cells. Moreover, he has developed structure-based strategies for vaccine design and drug development with the ultimate goal of securing the global community against future pandemics.

“It is gratifying to know that my research is helping scientists around the world battle the COVID-19 pandemic,” Li said.

Furthermore, Li's research on COVID-19 has elucidated how the pandemic virus infects cells while evading immunity and deciphered the evolution of COVID-19 variants, laying foundations for therapeutic development. His research at the University of Minnesota has been a leading scientific force globally against the pandemic.

“I’m currently focused on the development of a new type of therapeutic against COVID-19,” he said. “I am excited by the possibility that this therapeutic will not only target coronaviruses but extend to treat other viral infections and serious diseases as well.”

Health officials have sorely lacked successful antivirals to combat viral illnesses in the fight against the pandemic. The Midwest AViDD Center was established through grant support from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (AI171954). The center’s primary mission is developing novel, high potency, and orally available antivirals for SARS2 and other viruses of pandemic potential.   

In addition to being a Co-Principal Investigator for Midwest AViDD, Dr. Fang Li is a professor and Edmund Wallace Tulloch and Anna Marie Tulloch Endowed Chair, Department of Pharmacology, and the founding Director of the Center for Coronavirus Research at the University of Minnesota Medical School.

About the Midwest AViDD Center

The mission of the Midwest AViDD Center is to help develop the next generation of antiviral drugs for pandemic-level viruses, including SARS-CoV-2, Ebola, Lassa, and Zika viruses. Headquartered at the University of Minnesota, and including 18 other institutions nationwide, the Midwest AViDD Center is part of a network of nine national centers established by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).



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