Nanomedicine & Nanobioengineering
Biomedical research at the nano-level opens a wide range of possibilities for diagnosis and treatment of injury and disease. SBES work in this area includes initiatives with polymeric biomaterials, nucleic acids, microfluidics, medical devices and other tools which offer valuable information at the cellular level. Future disease treatment could include a more tailored and personalized approach, enabling the use of lower and more effective drug dosages.
The Micro/NanoScale Biotic/Abiotic Systems Engineering Laboratory research interest is in experimental and theoretical investigation of phenomena at the interface of biological and synthetic systems (or bio-hybrid engineering) at the micro and nanoscale. Current research activities can be divided into two broad categories: (1) Developing bio-hybrid engineered systems in which biological components are utilized for actuation, sensing, communication, and control (e.g. bacteria-enabled autonomous drug delivery systems for cancer therapy) (2) Studying mechanism of adhesion, motility and sensing in mammalian cells and unicellular microorganisms (e.g. effect of surface nanotopography on fungal biofilm formation).
Our lab’s focus is on advancing micro- and nanotechnologies towards translational applications. This is pursued in two central directions. First, we develop novel measurement strategies using the solid-state nanopore platform: a fabricated nanodevice capable of probing individual biomolecules electrically. With this, we are able to detect a range of biomarkers of disease, including target nucleic acid sequences, epigenetic modifications, and agents of autoimmune disorders like Celiac’s disease. Second, we combine 3D cell culture techniques with microfluidic delivery systems. Here, we are uncovering the biology of cancer progression and metastasis, and building towards patient-specific drug screening.
Yong Woo Lee
The pro-oxidative and pro-inflammatory pathways have been implicated in various human chronic diseases including neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric diseases. We investigate the critical role of oxidative stress and inflammation in 3 different experimental animal models of brain injury, such as (1) blast-induced neurotrauma (BINT), (2) radiation-induced cognitive impairment, and (3) autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Results from these studies will identify novel biomarkers in patients with brain disease that have the potential to offer new opportunities for diagnosis, prevention, and treatment.
We are interested in the role of polymers and macromolecules in emerging biomedical technology, from tissue adhesives and 3D printed scaffolds to novel drug delivery carriers.
The research at the Laboratory for Fluid Dynamics in Nature (FiNLab) is focused on two main themes: fluid flows in nature, and advanced computational methods for fluid flows. The natural systems studied at FiNLab range from insect respiratory flows, which occur at the microscale, to planetary atmospheric flows with length scales on the order of tens of kilometers. There is an emphasis on biomimetics for efficiency, resilience, and sustainability, on high performance computing, and on advanced multiscale computational modeling.
Development of theranostic agents for brain tumor diagnosis and treatment. Development of image-guided drug delivery system to cross the BBB to treat brain tumors.
- Masoud Agah, “Bio-MEMS and microfluidics”
- YongWoo Lee, "Cancer imaging and treatment"
- Chang Lu, "Microfluidics for cellular analysis and engineering"
- Debbie Kelly, "In situ molecular microscopy"
- Lissett Bickford, "Design and optimization of targeted theranostic nanoparticles"
- Scott Verbridge, "The dynamics of cancer progression"
- Rafaella De Vita, "Mechanics of lipid bilayers"
- Padma Rajagopalan, “Transport of nanoparticles in liver models”
- Adam Hall, "Single-Molecule Biophysics"
Advanced Neuroscience Imaging Research Core (ANSIR group)