Rong Li, PhD


Dr. Rong Li, PhD's research focuses on uterine biology during physiological and pathological conditions. During natural pregnancy, Dr. Li identified the critical roles of TRIM28, acting as a PGR co-regulator, to modulate the uterine biology both in cultured human endometrial stromal cells and in mouse models. Meanwhile, Dr. Li discovered epithelial PGR can regulate the uterine receptivity through LIF expression at glandular epithelium and FOXO1 nuclear localization at luminal epithelium. At this time, she is researching endometriosis associated uterine receptivity defects using the mouse endometriosis model established by Dr. Jae Wook Jeong. Dr. Li  plans to conduct the novel technology scRNA-seq and spatial transcriptome to identify the spatial and cellular changes in the ectopic and eutopic uterus during endometriosis. These results may answer the important questions in the field such as “how ectopic endometrial lesions affect the eutopic uterus” and “ how the changes in the eutopic uterus lead to infertility”.

Academic Information

Assistant Research Professor


1030 Hitt St
Columbia, MO 65212
United States

Research Interests

  • Transcription factor activity in regulating uterine biology during embryo implantation
  • The underlying mechanism of endometriosis associated uterine defects

Areas of Expertise

  • Uterine biology
  • Transcription factor regulation;
  • Uterine receptivity during endometriosis.

Education & Training


2016 PhD, Univeristy of Georgia


2016-2022 National Institute of Environmental Health


  • Li, R., Wang, T., Shelp-Peck, E., Wu, S., DeMayo, F.J.
    (2022) The single cell atlas of cultured human endometrial stromal cells.
    Fertility & Sterility Science. (PMID: 36089208)
  • Li, R., Wang, T., Xu X., Emery, O.M., Yi, M., Wu, S., DeMayo, F.J.
    (2022) Spatial Transcriptomic Profiles of Mouse Uterine Microenvironments at Pregnancy Day 7.5.
    Biology of Reproduction, 00, 1-17 (PMID: 35357464)
  • Li, R., Wang, X., Huang, Z., Balaji J, Kim, TH, Wang, T., Zhou, L., Wu, S., Deleon, A., Cook, M.E., Marbrey, M.W., Jeong J.W., Arora R., DeMayo, F.J
    (2021) The role of epithelial progesterone receptor isoforms in embryo implantation.
    iScience 24, 103487 (PMID: 34934913)
  • Peavey, M.C., Wu, S., Li, R., Liu, J., Emery, O.M., Wang, T., Zhou L., Wetendorf, M., Yallampalli, C., Gibbons W.E., Lydon J.P., DeMayo, F.J.
    (2021) Progesterone receptor isoform B regulates the Oxtr-Plcl2-Trpc3 pathway to suppress uterine contractility.
    (2021) PNAS, 118(11):e2011643118 (PMID: 33707208)
  • Wetendorf, M.*, Li, R.*, Wu, S., Liu, J., Creighton C.J., Wang, T., Janardhan, K.S., Willson, C.J., Lanz, R.B., Murphy, B.D., Lydon, J.P., and DeMayo, F.J.
    (2020) Constitutive expression of progesterone receptor isoforms promotes the development of hormone-dependent ovarian neoplasms
    Science Signaling, 13 (652): 9646 (PMID: 33023986)
  • Li, R., Wu, S., Zhou L., Nicol B., Lydon, J.P., Yao H., DeMayo, F.J.
    (2020) Increased FOXL2 expression alters uterine structures and functions
    Biology of Reproduction, 103(5):951-965 (PMID: 32948877)