Benyi Li, MD, PhD

Associate Professor and Director Basic Science Laboratory, Department of Urology
Associate Professor, Department of Molecular & Integrative Physiology (joint appointment)
MD. Tongji Medical University of China , 1992
PhD. Fukui Medical University of Japan , 1997

KUMC Center/Institute Affiliation(s):

Member, Kansas Masonic Cancer Research Institute
Member, Center for Reproductive Sciences

Research Interests

The critical issue for curing prostate cancer patient is to overcome the androgen-independent progression of prostate cancer cells. Now, we are focusing on this topic using advanced technologies including genomics, molecular biology and novel animal model. The ultimate goal of the laboratory is to uncover the mechanisms responsible for cancer development and progression at a molecular level, and subsequently to develop a novel therapeutic approach for treatment. The current research directions are

  1. Determination of the molecular mechanisms involved in androgen-independent progression of human prostate cancer
  2. Identification of novel therapeutic targets for prostate cancer treatment.
  3. Determination of the exact role of individual MMP in cancer metastasis.

Recent Publications

  1. Qing Zhu, Jianxi Tang, Hyewon Youn, Ossama Tawfik, Paul F. Terranova, Jie Du, Patrick Raynal, J. Brantley Thrasher, and Benyi Li. Phosphoinositide 3-OH kinase p110bis essential for androgen receptor transactivation and tumor growth in prostate cancer. Oncogene, 2008; 27(33):4569-79.
  2. Aijing Sun, Jianxi Tang, Yan Hong, Jiawu Song, Paul F. Terranova, J. Brantley Thrasher, Stan Svojanovsky, Hong-gang Wang and Benyi Li. Androgen Receptor-dependent Regulation of Bcl-xL Expression: Implication in Prostate Cancer Progression. The Prostate, 2008, 68(4):453-461.
  3. Shen FY, Benyi Li. [Anti-apoptotic effect of the androgen receptor in human prostate cancer]. Zhonghua Nan Ke Xue. 2007 Dec;13(12):1121-4.
  4. Ilanchezhian Shanmugam, Guangming Cheng, Paul F. Terranova, J. Brantley Thrasher, Christie P. Thomas, and Benyi Li. Serum/Glucocorticoid-induced Protein Kinase-1 Facilitates Androgen Receptor-dependent Cell Survival. Cell Death and Differentiation, 2007, 14(2):2085-2094.
  5. Aijing Sun, Ilanchezian Shanmugam, Hyewon Youn, Jiawu Song, Paul F. Terranova, J. Brantley Thrasher, and Benyi Li. Lithium suppress cell proliferation and E2F-mediated gene expression by disrupting E2F-DNA interaction in prostate cancer cells. The Prostate, 2007, 67(9):976-988.
  6. Benyi Li, Aijing Sun, Hyewon Youn, Yan Hong, Paul F. Terranova, J. Brantley Thrasher, and Pingyi Xu. Conditional Akt activation promotes androgen-independent progression of prostate cancer. Carcinogenesis, 2007, 28(3):572-83. (As corresponding author).
  7. Benyi Li, Liao XB, Fujito A, Thrasher JB, Shen F, Xu PY. Dual androgen-response elements mediate androgen regulation of mmp-2 gene expression in prostate cancer cells. Asian Journal of Andrology, 2007, 9(1):41-50. (As corresponding author).
  8. Sun A, Tawfik O, Geyrad B, Thrasher JB, Hoesije, S, Li C and Benyi Li. Aberrant expression of SWI/SNF catalytic subunits BRG1/BRM is associated with tumor development and increased invasiveness in prostate cancers. The Prostate, 2007; 67(2):203-13. (As corresponding author).
  9. Chen L, Meng S, Wang H, Bali P, Bai W, Li B, Atadja P, Bhalla KN, Wu J. Chemical ablation of androgen receptor in prostate cancer cells by the histone deacetylase inhibitor LAQ824. Mol Cancer Ther. 2005; 4(9):1311-9.
  10. Liao X, Tang S, Griebling T, Thrasher JB, and Benyi Li. siRNA-mediated androgen receptor silencing leads to apoptotic cell death in prostate cancer. Mol Cancer Therapeutics, 2005, 4(4):505-15. (As corresponding author).
  11. Liao X, Thrasher JB, Holzbeierlien J, Scott S, and Benyi Li. GSK-3bactivity is required for androgen-stimulated gene expression. Endocrinology, 145:2941-2949, 2004. (As corresponding author).
  12. Liao X, Zhang L, Du J, Thrasher JB and Benyi Li. GSK-3bsuppression eliminates TRAIL resistance in prostate cancer. Mol Cancer Therapeutics, 2003; 2:1215-1222. (as corresponding author)
  13. Liao X, Thrasher JB, Pelling J, Sang QX, Holzbeierlien J and Benyi Li. Androgen stimulates MMP2 expression in human prostate cancer. Endocrinology 2003; 144:1656-1663. (as corresponding author)
  14. Benyi Li,Desai, S.A., MacCorkle-Chosnek, R.A., Fan, L. and Spencer, D.M. A novel conditional Akt 'survival switch' reversibly protects cells from apoptosis. Gene Ther 2002; 9(4):233-244.
  15. Benyi Liand QP Dou. Bax degradation by the ubiquitin/proteasome pathway: involvement in tumor survival and progression. Proceedings of National Academy Society of USA. 2000; 97:3850-3855.
  16. Dou QP and Benyi Li. Proteasome inhibitors as potential anticancer agent. Drug Resistant Updates. 1999; 2:215-233.
  17. Sun JZ, Nam S, Lee CS, Benyi Li, et al. CEP1612, a dipeptidyl proteasome inhibitor, induces p21waf1 and p27kip1 expression and apoptosis and inhibits the growth of the human lung adenocarcinoma A-549 in nude mice. Cancer Research, 2000; 61:1280-1284. 


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Benyi Li, MD, PhD
Associate Professor and Director Basic Science Laboratory, Department of Urology
Associate Professor, Department of Molecular & Integrative Physiology (joint appointment)

1042 Lied Biomedical Research Facility Mail Stop 1053
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City, KS 66160

P: (913) 588-4773
F: (913) 588-7625