Li Lanjuan | Updated: Feb 22, 2021

Li Lanjuan was born in Xialyuqiao Village, Xialyu Town, Shaoxing County, Zhejiang Province on September 1947. She is an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, a pacemaker of the national key discipline of infectious diseases, and a pioneer in artificial liver research. 

She has served as director of the Health Commission of Zhejiang province; director, professor, chief physician and PhD instructor of the State Key Laboratory for Diagnosis and Treatment of Infectious Diseases; executive director of the China Medical Women’s Association; director and vice president of the Chinese Medical Association (CMA); president of the Zhejiang Medical Association of the CMA; deputy director of the Society of Infectious Diseases, CMA; deputy director of the Society of Microecology, Chinese Preventive Medicine Association; and group leader of the association’s research into liver failure and artificial livers. 

She has also served as editor-in-chief of Infectious Diseases and medical textbooks for the national institutions of higher education, associate editor of the sub series of Chinese Journal of Infectious Diseases and International Journal of Epidemiology and Infectious Disease, and director of the National Artificial Liver Training Base.

In 2005, Li was elected an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering. 

Li graduated from the School of Medicine of Zhejiang Medical University in 1973. She has been engaged in clinical, teaching and research work on infectious diseases for more than 30 years. 

In March 2013, Chinese scientists headed by Academician Li have made major breakthroughs in H7N9 avian influenza research, with the paper Human infections with the emerging avian influenza A H7N9 virus from wet market poultry: clinical analysis and characteriation of viral genome published in the well-known medical journal The Lancet

The unique and effective artificial liver support system helped make a major breakthrough in severe hepatitis treatment. The mortality rate of acute and subacute severe liver disease was significantly reduced from 88.1% to 21.1%, and the mortality rate of chronic severe liver disease was reduced from 84.6% to 56.6%. More than 700 cases have been treated. 

Li formulated ALSS technical specifications as a national standard that she actively promoted throughout the country.

She has won the second prize of the National Science and Technology Progress Awards. She established the first immortalized human liver cell line, created a four-step perfusion method to separate hepatocytes, and constructed new hybrid artificial livers. 

Li has applied for nine patents and two have been authorized. When she first revealed the changes in the intestinal microecology of patients with severe hepatitis she proposed B/E as a new indicator of intestinal colonization resistance and discovered five new lactam genotypes. She won the first prize of Provincial Science and Technology Progress Awards in both 2001 and 2003. 

Li has published more than 130 papers, more than 10 of which are included in the SCI. She has also edited eight monographs and co-edited nine more.

Li revealed the changes in the intestinal microecology of patients with severe hepatitis, developing a theory on pathogenesis of severe hepatitis; she proposed B/E as a new indicator of intestinal colonization resistance, providing an objective basis for the research of intestinal microecology; in addition she bred sterile rats (identified by the National Institute for the Control of Pharmaceutical and Biological Products) and established a sterile animal experiment research platform.

Li focuses on bacterial resistance research, and led a bacterial resistance research team that discovered six new P-lactam genotypes, winning first prize in the Zhejiang Province Science and Technology Progress Awards in both 2001 and 2004. 

She edited the first monograph Infectious Microecology, which established the basis of infection microecology. 

She led the research group to cultivate and isolate the SARS virus successfully and completed gene sequencing, which was the second strain to be registered in GenBank. 

She was the first to discover that replicating SARS-CoVS is present in PBMC, which was of great significance for tracing the incidence of SARS.

Li has published more than 200 papers in domestic and foreign journals such as Journal Hepatology and Journal of Clinical Virology, of which more than 20 are included in SCI. She also served as editor-in chief of 11 monographs, including Infectious Diseases, which has become a planning textbook of national medical colleges and universities. In addition, she is a director of the Zhejiang Artificial Liver Center and editor-in-chief of Journal of Infectious Diseases, as well as an associate editor-in-chief of Chinese Journal of Infectious Diseases and International Journal of Epidemiology and Infectious Disease.

On October 26, 2013, the First Affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine announced that Chinese scientists had successfully developed a vaccine against H7N9 avian influenza virus. In the event of an outbreak of H7N9 avian influenza, a vaccine can be quickly produced to prevent the pandemic. 

The H7N9 work shows that China has the technology and ability to independently develop influenza virus vaccine strains, breaking and changing the history of China's dependence on influenza vaccine strains provided by foreign countries.

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