Molecular, Cell and Tissue Engineering

various microscope images of cell and tissue

Analysis of the LacNAc level on a lung adenocarcinoma microarray. Source: Prof. Sara Rouhanifard

Principles for engineering living cells and tissues are essential to address many of the most significant biomedical challenges facing our society today. These application areas include engineering biomaterials to coax and enable stem cells to form functional tissue or to heal damaged tissue; designing vehicles for delivering genes and therapeutics to reach specific target cells to treat a disease; and uncovering therapeutic strategies to curb pathological cell behaviors and tissue phenotypes.

At a more fundamental level, the field is at the nascent stages of understanding how cells make decisions in complex microenvironments and how cells interact with each other and their surrounding environment to organize into complex three-dimensional tissues. Advances will require multiscale experimental, computational, and theoretical approaches spanning molecular-cellular-tissue levels and integration of molecular and physical mechanisms, including the role of mechanical forces.

Primary faculty contacts


Anand Asthagiri
Anand Asthagiri
Associate Professor,  Bioengineering
Affiliated Faculty,  Chemical Engineering

cell and tissue engineering, quantitative principles of cancer cell biology and developmental biology


Ambika Bajpayee
Ambika Bajpayee
Associate Professor,  Bioengineering
Affiliated Faculty,  Global Resilience Institute

drug delivery; bio-electrostatics; transport phenomena in biological systems; biomechanics; osteoarthritis


Samuel Chung
Samuel Chung
Assistant Professor,  Bioengineering

Brain cell regeneration, automated microscopy and laser surgery, user-friendly and low-cost fluorescence microscopy


Guohao Dai
Guohao Dai
Associate Professor,  Bioengineering

3-D bioprinting technology, stem cells technology and vascular bioengineering


Michael Jaeggli
Michael Jaeggli
Associate Teaching Professor
Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies,  Bioengineering


Jiahe Li
Jiahe Li
Assistant Professor,  Bioengineering

Oral vaccine, host and oral microbiome interactions, microbiome engineering, and protein engineering-based cancer immunotherapy


Elizabeth Libby
Elizabeth Libby
Assistant Professor,  Bioengineering

Synthetic biology, microbiology, biosensor development


Lee Makowski
Lee Makowski
Professor and Chair,  Bioengineering & Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Professor,  Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Affiliated Faculty,  Electrical and Computer Engineering

Image and signal processing as applied to biophysical data designed to answer fundamental questions about the molecular basis of living systems, and progression of Alzheimer's Disease


Helen Markewich
Helen Markewich
Assistant Teaching Professor,  Bioengineering


Harikrishnan Parameswaran
Harikrishnan Parameswaran
Assistant Professor,  Bioengineering

We study cell-cell and cell-extracellular matrix interactions in the airway to understand the fundamental mechanisms that regulate airway caliber and why they fail in diseases like asthma.


Sara Rouhanifard
Assistant Professor,  Bioengineering

Developing chemical approaches to track and quantify important RNA processing events and modifications in single cells; DNA: protein interactions that drive differences in gene expression; understanding differences in RNA expression and the impacts on disease and development


Jeffrey W. Ruberti
Jeffrey W. Ruberti
Professor,  Bioengineering
Affiliated Faculty,  Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

Tissue engineering of load-bearing matrix (bone, cornea); bioreactor design; multi-scale mechanobiochemistry; statistical mechanics; energetics microscopy; high-resolution imaging; biopolymer self-assembly


Shiaoming Shi
Associate Teaching Professor,  Bioengineering

Cancer detection and drug discovery technologies