Yan Li, PhD

Yan Li, PhD

McLean Hospital Title
Harvard Medical School Title
  • Instructor in Psychiatry


Yan Li, PhD, received his PhD from the Shanghai Brain Research Institute in China. During his doctoral studies he characterized anatomical substrates of synaptic integration in hypoglossal motoneurons in rats. With the help of the NIH Fogarty International Fellowship, he continued his research in the U.S. in the laboratory of Robert Burke at NINDS. At NIH, he studied the mechanisms of synaptic transmission in the spinal cord during early postnatal development.

To obtain additional training in advanced electrophysiological techniques, Dr. Li joined the laboratory of Guosong Liu at the Center for Learning and Memory at MIT. While at MIT, he studied the biophysical properties of synaptic transmission at individual hippocampal synapses. Since joining Vadim Bolshakov’s laboratory at McLean Hospital, he now focuses on studies of synaptic transmission in the amygdala and other brain regions implicated in control of fear and anxiety.


PubMed search for Dr. Li

Education & Training

  • 1984 BS, Dalian Medical College, China
  • 1990 MS, Dalian Medical School, China
  • 1997 PhD, Shanghai Brain Research Institute, Shanghai, China
  • 1997-2002 Post-Doctoral Fellowship, NINDS, National Institutes of Health
  • 2002-2005 Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Center for Learning and Memory, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Phone: 617.855.2090
Office Address: Belmont campus - Mailman Research Center, Room 206