Sep 6, 2018
Professor Zhao Li

Libby Teacher-Scholar Professor Zhao Li has been selected to receive a Women in Molecular Imaging Network (WIMIN) Scholar Award.

Li will receive the award at the World Molecular Imaging Congress (WMIC) in Seattle, Washington, September 12-15, 2018. The WMIC is the annual meeting organized by the World Molecular Imaging Society (WMIS). Approximately 2000 participants will attend the meeting at which Li will give two contributed talks. The award recognizes Li’s scientific paper titled “Deoxyhemoglobin as a label-free intrinsic cancer probe and contrast agent for early glioblastoma detection by MRI”.

The WIMIN Scholar Award is given to members of the WMIS, the European Society for Molecular Imaging (ESMI) or the Federation of Asian Societies for Molecular Imaging (FASMI) who are presenters of meritorious scientific papers at the annual meetings.

Li received her bachelor's degree in polymer science in the honors program from Sichuan University in 2010 and her Ph.D. in physical chemistry from UCLA in 2015 under the direction of Professor Yung-Ya Lin. She is currently a Libby Teacher-Scholar teaching undergraduate chemistry courses and continuing her research on early cancer detection and targeted therapy by magnetic resonance molecular imaging and nano theranostics in Lin's laboratory.  Li also helps mentor about fifteen group members for graduate and undergraduate research.

The department's Teacher-Scholar program allows assistant adjunct professors to conduct research and teaching simultaneously, as a way to effectively prepare them for future faculty positions. In research, Li received a Roy and Dorothy John Fellowship from Division of Physical Sciences in 2014, the department's Physical Chemistry Dissertation Award in 2015, and the Hirshberg Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research Award in 2016. In teaching, Li was awarded the UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry Hanson-Dow Teaching Assistant Award in 2011 and the Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award for Teaching Assistants in 2015. In 2018, Li received the department’s highest teaching award, the Hanson-Dow Award for Excellence in Teaching, and a 2018 Distinguished Teaching Award for Non-Senate Faculty.