Li, Xiang (Sean)

Image Li, Sean (Xiang)
Research Scientist

Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Charlottetown Laboratory; coordinates and conducts research and technology development for the detection, identification, and classification of plant pathogenic bacteria of regulatory importance. Specialises in potato brown rot, ring rot, blackleg/soft rot, zebra chip, and phytoplasma diseases, and root and butt rot diseases of conifers employing comparative genomics and metegenomics, phylogenetics and phylogeographics, and conventional and molecular diagnostic technologies.

Current research and/or projects

Detection/identification of plant pathogenic bacteria of regulatory importance: Ralstonia solanacearum, Clavibacter sepedonicus,  'Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum', 'Candidatus Phytoplasma spp.'

Classification/taxonomy of plant pathogenic bacteria: Clavibacter spp. Pectobacterium spp., Dickeya spp.  

Development of on-the-spot diagnostic techniques: Handheld device on the basis of loop-mediated isothermal amplification and qPCR technologies

Phylogentic and phylogeographics of root and butt rot diseases of conifers: Heterobasidion spp. 

Other research activities: Potato common scab and powdery scab, Stewartii's wilt of corn, bacterial leaf streak, virus and viroid diseases of potato.

Comparative genomics and metagenomics technologies

Professional activities / interests

  • Member of the ISPP-CTPPB (Committee on Taxonomy of Plant Pathogenic Bacteria of International Society for Plant Pathology)

  • Member of the ISPP-CPQB (Committee on Plant Quarantine and Biosecurity)

  • Editorial Board Member of Acta Microbiologica Sinica

  • Member of the American Phytopathology Society, Diagnostics Committee member, and Bacteriology Committee member.

  • Member of the Canadian Phytopathological Society.

  • Invited speaker at many conferences and Universities.

  • Supervision of postdoctoral fellows, PhD, Master's and co-op students.

  • Review of scientific manuscripts for international journals

  • Review of proposal applications for research grants.

Education and awards

1993-1995 Canadian Government Laboratory Visiting Fellowship (Postdoc Fellow), AAFC Vancouver Research Station, Vancouver, BC, Canada

1993. Ph.D. in Department of Microbiology, the University of Queensland, QLD, Australia, Award: University of Queensland Postgraduate Scholorship

1983. Bachelor of Agricultural Science. Department of Pland Protection, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China

Key publications

  1. Nguyen HDT, Grunwald NJ, Abad ZG, Martin FN, Crouch J, Hambleton S, Dettman J, Liu M, Harris LJ, Castlebury L, Salagado-Salazar C, Cowger C, Ellouz O, Mollov D, Fall ML, Ling K, Griffifths J, Mahaffee W, Chen W, Sultata T, Yu Q, Carta LK, Skantar AM, Tambong J, Rogers E, Li S, Dumonceaux TJ, Widmer TL. The 2019 AAFC-USDA meeting on genotyping and monitoring of high-risk plant pathogens.

    2019 - View publication details

  2. Chuan J, Nie J, Gardner K, Hammill D. H., Nie X, Hale L, Xu H, Li X. 2019. Exploration of the virulence mechanism of Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum causing potato zebra chip disease. Northeast Potato Technological Forum 2019. Charlottetown, PEI, 20-21 March 2019.

    2019 - View publication details

  3. Smith RL, Lawrence J, Shukla M, Singh M, Li X, Xu H, Gardner K and Nie X. 2018. First report of Coleus blumei viroid 5 and molecular confirmation of Coleus blumei viroid 1 in commercial Coleus blumei in Canada. Plant Disease DOI: 10.1094/PDIS-01-18-0055-PDN

    2018 - View publication details

  4. Sean Li, James Tambong, Kat (Xiaoli) Yuan, H. Xu and Solke H. De Boer (2016)Re-classification of Clavibacter michiganensis subspecies into multiple new species. Annual Meeting of the Canadian Phytopathological Society Moncton, NB. June 12-15, 2016. Abstract.

    2017 - View publication details

  5. Nguyen HDT, Smith D, Li X, Gagnon M-C., Bilodeau G, van de Vossenberg B, van der Lee TAJ, Joly D, Levesque CA. 2016. Sixteen years of potato wart research collaboration between CFIA and AAFC. Poster presented at the 2016 CFIA Science Cafe in Ottawa.

    2016 - View publication details

Research facility

93 Mount Edward Road
Charlottetown, PE C1A5T1


Agence canadienne d’inspection des aliments, Laboratoire de Charlottetown, Charlottetown (Île‑du-Prince-Édouard)



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