Dr. Ming Li, prior to joining the University of Waterloo, was a postdoctoral fellow under the supervision of Les Valiant at Harvard University. He graduated with a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Cornell University in 1985 and served as an Assistant professor in Ohio State University and York University.
Dr. Li is working towards a very fast and accurate method of solving protein structures - one that will work with experimental data. In particular, Dr. Li and his team are working on an automatic system that would use 1 day to do the work, using massive parallel computers. Currently they have achieved this with 4 small proteins with high resolution.
In collaboration with Lars Konermann and Bin Ma, Dr. Li is working on a new way of solving protein structures using data from a mass spectrometer.
Bioinformatics has personal significance to Dr. Li, whose wife passed away from breast cancer in 2010. His loss further inspires him in his field. The Her-2 positive cancer is characterized by over-expression of the Her-2 protein on the cancer cell surface.