Biomaterials and Surface Bioengineering Laboratory
We are focusing on combining cutting-edge microfluidics, soft materials and high throughput nano-assembly techniques to develop novel biofunctional polymer surfaces and microdevices for biological applications, with particular interests in 3D cell microenvironments, cell-surface interactions, bio-imaging sensors, and cancer drug screening.
Currently, we have positions opening for highly motivated students and postdocs. Please send emails to firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
NewsDecember, 2017, Dr. Li has been awarded WCOE Whitacre Research Award for research growth. Thanks to all group members for your hardwork!
November, 2017, Ziye Dong successfully passed his PH.D. qualify exam. Congratulations!
November, 2017, Dr. Li presented our work on exosomes-mediated drug resistance for cancer cells at the CPRIT Innovation Conference in Austin.
November, 2017, Dr. Li gave a talk on LbL nanofilms for cancer cells at the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) Conference in Minneapolis. He also chaired one of the “Biomimetic Materials” sessions.
October, 2017, Our work on isolation of cancer cells in blood was highlighted on TTU Discovery: “Fishing for One Bad Cell Out of Trillions of Good Ones”.
October, 2017, Dr. Li presented our work on developing biodegradable nanofilms for cell isolation and recovery at the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) Conference in Phoenix. He also chaired one of the “Cancer Technologies” sessions.
August, 2017, Our lab received CPRIT High Impact/High Risk Research Awards to develop microchips that can isolate circulating tumor cells and distinguish their subpopulations.
August, 2017, Ziye Dong has been awarded a Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) Graduate Student Design and Research Award. Ziye was selected for the award based on his work on isolation and recovery of cancer cells from blood. He will receive the award during the plenary session at the National BMES meeting in October, and deliver an oral presentation during the “Cancer Technologies” session. Congratulations to Ziye!
August, 2017, Our review paper on "Engineering Cell Aggregates through Incorporated Polymeric Microparticles" was accepted for publication in Acta Biomaterialia. Congratulations to Caroline and Ziye!
July, 2017, Our collaborative paper on "Label-free, high-throughput holographic screening and enumeration of tumor cells in blood" was accepted for publication in Lab on a Chip. Congratulations to Caroline!
June, 2017, Our collaborative paper on "Elastocapillary bundling of high aspect-ratio metallic glass nanowires" was accepted for publication in Applied Physics Letters. Congratulations to Ziye!
June, 2017, Dr. Li gave an invited talk at Sogang University, Seoul, Korea.
June, 2017, Dr. Li gave an invited talk at the Layer-by-Layer 2017 Conference in Seoul, Korea. HyunTaek Lim also presented a research poster.
May, 2017, Ziye Dong received the third place in the Graduate Student Research Fair. Congratulations to Ziye!
April, 2017, Dr. Li gave an invited talk in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at University of Maryland College Park. The title of the talk was “Biodegradable Multilayered Nanofilms for Cell Isolation and Recovery".
April, 2017, Our paper on "Cell Isolation and Recovery Using Hollow Glass Microspheres Coated with Nanolayered Films for Applications in Resource-Limited Settings" was published in ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces. Congratulations to Ziye and all co-authors !
January, 2017, Dr. Li’s collaboration work was published in Journal of the American Chemical Society. The title of the paper is “Enhanced Isolation and Release of Circulating Tumor Cells Using Nanoparticle Binding and Ligand Exchange in a Microfluidic Chip”.
January, 2017, Yuting received the Graduate/Postdoc Travel Award to present our collaborative work on “Biomimetic Adipose Tissue Microchip” in ASBMB 2017 in Chicago. Congratulations to Yuting!
December, 2016, Our collaborative paper on "Label-Free Fingerprinting of Tumor Cells in Bulk Flow Using Inline Digital Holographic Microscopy" was accepted for publication in Biomedical Optics Express. Congratulations to Caroline!
November, 2016, Our book chapter on "Microfluidic Devices for Isolation of Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs)" was accepted for publication in “Microfluidics: Fundamental Devices and Applications” by John Wiley & Sons. Congratulations to Caroline!
November, 2016, Dr. Li presented our work on “Biomimetic Adipose Tissue Microchip” at the NIH Adipose Tissue Niche Workshop.
October, 2016, Dr. Qingye Liu joined the lab as a postdoc research fellow. Welcome Qingye!
October, 2016, Our paper on "A benchtop capillary flow layer-by-layer (CF-LbL) platform for rapid assembly and screening of biodegradable nanolayered films" was accepted for publication in Lab on a Chip. Congratulations to Ziye and Tang!
August, 2016, Dr. Ahrens and Dr. Li presented our work on circulating tumor cells at the Gordon Research Conference for Rare Cells in Circulation.
July, 2016, Our lab received TTU 2016 ORC Pilot & Feasibility Grant to develop an integrated biomimetic human adipose tissue microchip.
July, 2016, Visiting Student Yuting Chen joined the lab. She is a M. S. student from Prof. Jiangyu Wu’s group in the Department of Materials and Engineering at Wuhan Institute of Technology. Welcome!
June, 2016, Visiting Scholar Dan Yu joined the lab. He is an attending physician from People’s Hospital of Zhengzhou University. Welcome!
February, 2016, Our collaborative paper on "Reversibly tunable coupled and decoupled super absorbing structure" was accepted for publication in Applied Physics Letters. Congratulations to Ziye!
February, 2016, Dr. Li gave an invited talk in the School of Pharmacy at TTUHSC at Amarillo. The title of the talk was “Biodegradable nano-films for capture and non-invasive release of circulating tumor cells."
December, 2015, Dr. Li’s collaboration work was published in Advanced Materials. The title of the paper is “Self-Assembled Wound Dressings Silence MMP-9 and Improve Diabetic Wound Healing In Vivo”.
December, 2015, Dr. Anil Khanal joined the lab as a postdoctoral research associate. Welcome!
November, 2015, Zhenya Ding successfully transferred to Chemical Engineering Ph.D. program. Congratulations!
August, 2015, Our lab received CPRIT High Impact/High Risk Research Awards to study exosome-mediated drug resistance for cancers. Dr. Jungkyu Kim from Mechanical Engineering department is the Co-PI on this 200k grant.
August, 2015, Undergraduate research assistant HyunTaek Lim joined the lab. Welcome!
July, 2015, Dr. Li’s work on circulating tumor cells (CTCs) was highlighted by MaterialsToday : “Nanofilm takes gentle approach to cell capture”.
July, 2015, Dr. Li’s work from MIT was published in Biomaterials. The title of the paper is “Biodegradable Nano-films for Capture and Non-invasive Release of Circulating Tumor Cells”.
June, 2015, Ahasanul Hasan jointed the lab as a rotating student for 10 weeks. Ahasanul is currently a Ph.D student in the department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at TTUHSC. Welcome!
April, 2015, Dr. Caroline Chopko jointed the lab as a postdoctoral research associate. Caroline recently graduated from MIT and she is co-supervised by Dr. Vanapalli and Dr. Li. Welcome!
March, 2015, Nadia Sultana successfully defended her Master thesis. Congratulations!
March, 2015, Dr. Ling Tang’s collaboration paper was accepted for publishing in Lab on a Chip. The title of the paper is “Microfluidic Studies of Polymer Adsorption in Flow”. Congratulations!
March, 2015, Undergraduate research assistant Vi Cao joined the lab. Welcome!
February, 2015, Dr. Li’s collaboration work was published in Advanced Materials. The title of the paper is “Tunable Nanostructured Coating for the Capture and Selective Release of Viable Circulating Tumor Cells”.
November, 2014, Ph.D. student Ziye Dong joined the lab. Welcome!
November, 2014, Dr. Li gave an invited talk in the Electrical Engineering Department at University at Buffalo (SUNY). The title of the talk was “Surface Engineering of Polymer Materials and Microdevices for Biological Applications”.
September, 2014, Master student Zhenya Ding and undergraduate student Kabindra Sedhain joined the lab. Welcome!
August, 2014, Our collaboration work on circulating tumor cells is funded by CPRIT High Impact/High Risk Research Awards.
July, 2014, Undergraduate research assistant Neftaly Zapata joined the lab. Welcome!
May, 2014, Dr. Li’s work was published in ACS Nano. The title of the paper is “Capillary Flow Layer-by-Layer: A Microfluidic Platform for the High Throughput Assembly and Screening of Nanolayered Film Libraries”.
May, 2014, Visiting scholars Xue Zhang and Dr. Ling Tang joined the lab. Welcome!
Jan, 2014, Ph.D. students Samira Abedi and Nadia Sultana joined the lab. Welcome!
Jan, 2014, Dr. Li started at Texas Tech University
Faculty Member - Professor Wei Li
Dr. Wei Li joined the faculty as a tenuretrack assistant professor in the 2014 spring semester. Dr. Li obtained a Doctor of Philosophy in polymer chemistry and materials at the University of Toronto in 2010. His doctorial thesis focused on the development of droplet-based microfluidic systems for complex reactions and processes. During his doctorate program, he obtained extensive experience in droplet microfluidics for the synthesis of various microparticles, surface modification of microfluidic devices, cell encapsulation, multiphase reaction kinetics, and micro and nano patterning techniques. Following his graduate studies, he received a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Postdoctoral Fellowship to work at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the laboratory of Dr. Paula Hammond, where he learned a variety of techniques associated with the nanolayer assembly of biofunctional materials. His work at MIT included the development of a novel microparticle platform to investigate 3D cell microenvironments, the creation of a microfluidic device for the capture and non-invasively release of rare cancer cells, and the invention of high throughput preparation and screening of nanolayered biomaterials.
Dr. Li’s research at Texas Tech will combine cutting-edge microfluidics and nanoassembly techniques to develop novel biofunctional polymer surfaces and microdevices for biological applications. He is particularly interested in 3D microenvironments for cells, interactions between cells and surfaces, bio-imaging sensors, and cancer drug screening. He is also excited to be in the classroom working with students and plans to teach courses related to materials and bioengineering, including the core engineering materials science course. Li is also interested in developing a graduate-level course focused on topics of micro and nano engineering for various biological applications.