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Office Location:
Bridgeside Point II, Room 206

Mailing address:
450 Technology Drive
Pittsburgh, PA, 15219


Phone: 412-624-8668


Hongshuai (Ken) Li, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

Research Interests

The main focuses of the Musculoskeletal Growth & Regeneration Laboratory (MGRL) are stem cell based musculoskeletal regeneration and cross talks between skeletal muscle and other musculoskeletal tissues during exercise, neuromuscular diseases and aging. The research laboratory offers research fellows, medical students, graduate students, and undergraduate students the opportunity and the ability to participate in research related to musculoskeletal regeneration with emphasis on the stem cells and cross-talks between tissues.

Technique Expertise or Resources to share

  • Micro-CT imaging: MicroCT (Scanco vivaCT-40) based morphometric analysis.
  • Bone Morphometric Analysis: Static and dynamic bone histomorphometric analysis based on paraffin and frozen sections (calcified and noncalcified).
  • Skeletal Muscle Functional Tests: Aurora Scientific 3-in-1 muscle functional testing apparatuses (mice and rats), which can perform in situ, in vivo, and in vitro muscle functional tests.
  • Animal models: Mdx (dystrophin KO), dKO (dystrophin/utrophin double KO), FGF21 KO, skeletal muscle specific FGF21 KO, Myoglobin KO.
  • Cell lines: Human and murine myoblasts; Bone Marrow Mesenchymal Stem Cell; Human Breast Milk Derived Stem Cells.


Skeletal Muscle; Muscle/bone Cross-talk; Muscular Dystrophy; Muscle Stem Cells (satellite cells); Fibro-adipogenic progenitors (FAPs); Bone Marrow Fat; Osteoporosis; Sarcopenia; Musculoskeletal Regeneration; FGF21; FGF23; Myokines; Nitrate/Nitrite Bioactivity; nNOS deficiency.   


Lab Mission:

  • To understand how skeletal muscle, the largest organ in the body, communicates with other organs as a harbor of progenitor cells and signaling molecules.
  • To develop therapies targeting skeletal muscle to treat various musculoskeletal injuries and degenerative conditions.

Lab website:

Department Profile:

Lab Members

Min Li Lab Tech
Mattew Sherrier Research Resident