My group pursues highly interdisciplinary research in the areas of biological and macromolecular chemistry.The major goal in these research projects is to elucidate the underlying fundamental chemistry and engineering principles and to use that insight to direct our creative and scientific efforts. In one of our current research projects, we are designing, synthesizing, and characterizing novel dendrimers, termed “biodendrimers,” for tissue engineering and biotechnological applications. Currently, we are evaluating these novel biomaterials for the repair of corneal lacerations, for the delivery of anti-cancer drugs, for the delivery of DNA, and as temporary biodegradable scaffolds for cartilage repair. In a second project, we are creating novel polymeric coatings termed “interfacial biomaterials” that control biology on plastic, metal, and ceramic surfaces. In a third project, we are designing electrochemical-based sensors/devices using conducting polymer nanostructures and specific DNA structural motifs.
Education• B.A., Occidental College, 1987; Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1992.
Awards• Johnson and Johnson Focused Giving Grant Recipient, 2001
• 3M Non-Tenured Faculty Award, 2001
• Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, 2000
• Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar, 2000
• Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences, 1999
• NSF Career Award, 1999
• Whitaker Foundation Grant Recipient, 1998
• ACS Nobel Laureate Signature Award, 1994
• NIH Postdoctoral Fellowship, 1993
• T.S. Piper Award for Outstanding Inorganic Research, 1991
• The ACS Fellowship of the Colloid & Surface Division (Sponsored by Procter & Gamble), 1990
• University of Illinois Chemistry Department Fellowship, 1989
By this Researcher