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MolES faculty members elected to Washington State Academy of Sciences

July 16, 2021

Chemistry Professors Alshakim Nelson and Munira Khalil are among the 38 new members of the Washington State Academy of Sciences recognized for their “outstanding record of scientific and technical achievement and willingness to work on behalf of the Academy to bring the best available science to bear on issues within the state of Washington." [...]

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UW synthetic biologist James Carothers wins ARPA-E award to develop new CO2 bioconversion process

July 13, 2021

The funding will be used to develop scalable, cell-free platforms that enable the capture and conversion of carbon dioxide into industrial chemicals, providing manufacturers with a cheaper, more efficient and sustainable means of chemical production. [...]

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Molecular engineering graduates tackle global grand challenges

July 12, 2021

This past year, in the midst of a global pandemic, nine students in the Molecular Engineering Ph.D. Program (MolE) completed their degrees. Learn how they applied molecular engineering principles to enable a healthier and more sustainable world and what they're up to next. [...]

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Microfluidics: The tiny, beautiful tech hidden all around you

May 17, 2021

In this piece for The Conversation, bioengineering professor Albert Folch describes how microfluidic devices use the strange behavior of fluids in tiny spaces to impact medicine, science and the modern world. [...]

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Alzheimer’s research gets a boost

April 6, 2021

Bioengineering startup AltPep advances technology for the early detection and treatment of Alzheimer’s and other amyloid diseases. [...]

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Role of solvent molecules in light-driven electron transfer revealed

March 12, 2021

In a study published in Nature Chemistry, a research team led by MolES faculty member Munira Khalil, professor and chair of chemistry at the UW, has captured the rapid motions of solvent molecules that impact light-driven electron transfer in a molecular complex for the first time. This information could help researchers learn how to control energy flow in molecules, potentially leading to more efficient clean energy sources. [...]

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Inspiring Black scientists at UW
List of 1,000 inspiring Black scientists includes two MolES researchers

February 11, 2021

James Carothers, a professor of chemical engineering, and Jessica Ray, a professor of civil & environmental engineering, were both included in Cell Mentor's list of 1,000 inspiring Black scientists. [...]

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MolES 2019-20 Annual Report

February 5, 2021

The Molecular Engineering & Sciences Institute annual report for the 2019-20 academic year is now available. Learn about the work being done at MolES and the MAF by our faculty, students, and staff! The report features a snapshot of our institute, research highlights, faculty awards, our work to address racism in STEM, graduating students, and [...]

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Researchers use lasers and molecular tethers to create perfectly patterned platforms for tissue engineering

January 18, 2021

MolES faculty member Cole DeForest and colleagues have developed a technique to modify naturally occurring biological polymers with protein-based biochemical messages that affect cell behavior. Their approach, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, uses a near-infrared laser to trigger chemical adhesion of protein messages to a scaffold made from biological polymers such as collagen, a connective tissue found throughout our bodies. [...]

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Characterizing microbial communities in the human gut and soil to understand their roles in health, disease and the environment

December 16, 2020

Alex Carr is a 3rd year molecular engineering Ph.D. student co-advised by UW affiliated investigators Drs. Sean Gibbons and Nitin Baliga at the Institute for Systems Biology. We recently spoke with Carr about his research and his experience in the Molecular Engineering (MolE) Ph.D. program. How did you come to pursue a Ph.D. in molecular [...]

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MolES researchers answer questions about molecular engineering in Reddit AMA

November 23, 2020

Graduate students, staff, and faculty from MolES recently participated in a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) about molecular engineering to help raise awareness about this growing discipline. Redditors from around the globe asked awesome questions - check out some of our favorites! [...]

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A culture of collaboration

November 17, 2020

MolES faculty members Barry Lutz and Paul Yager pivoted their diagnostics research to support the need for COVID-19 testing. [...]

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Break it up: Polymer derived from material in shrimp’s shells could deliver anti-cancer drugs to tumor sites

November 3, 2020

A University of Washington team led by Miqin Zhang, a MolES faculty member and professor of materials science and engineering, has developed a nanoparticle-based drug delivery system that can ferry a potent anti-cancer drug through the bloodstream safely. Their nanoparticle is derived from chitin, a natural and organic polymer that, among other things, makes up the outer shells of shrimp. [...]

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Alshakim Nelson Named MolES Director of Education

November 2, 2020

Alshakim Nelson, UW associate professor of chemistry, has been named Molecular Engineering & Sciences Institute (MolES) Director of Education. Nelson replaces Christine Luscombe, professor of chemistry and materials science & engineering, who served in the role prior to her recent appointment as interim chair of the Materials Science & Engineering Department. Nelson will lead the Molecular Engineering [...]

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How to build a network of pharmaceutical biofactories

October 15, 2020

Advances in synthetic biology and biomaterials are opening up exciting prospects for the distributed manufacturing of drugs, food products, and other commodities. [...]

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Lab-Made ‘Miniproteins’ Could Block the Coronavirus from Infecting Cells

October 13, 2020

Researchers at the Institute for Protein Design are developing synthetic peptides that mimic human antibodies for COVID-19 which could be cheaper and easier to produce. [...]

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All together now: Experiments with twisted 2D materials catch electrons behaving collectively

October 7, 2020

In a paper published Sept. 14 in the journal Nature Physics, a team led by the University of Washington reports that carefully constructed stacks of graphene — a 2D form of carbon — can exhibit highly correlated electron properties. The team also found evidence that this type of collective behavior likely relates to the emergence of exotic magnetic states. [...]

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The heat is on for building 3D artificial organ tissues

October 1, 2020

Bioengineering professor Kelly Stevens and colleagues created a new tool to control gene expression in 3D-printed genetically-engineering cells using heat. [...]

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UW MolE welcomes new Ph.D. cohort

October 1, 2020

We are thrilled to welcome our newest cohort of molecular engineering (MolE) doctoral students to the University of Washington! Though this might not be the circumstances under which they envisioned starting graduate school, with some students even participating remotely from another state or country, we applaud our incoming students for their resilience and flexibility. Please join us in welcoming them to the UW and our molecular engineering community! Learn more about each student and their current research interests. [...]

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From clean energy postdoc to microscopy and nanomechanical testing expert

September 16, 2020

Micah Glaz, Molecular Analysis Facility staff scientist and nanomechanical testing expert, came to the UW as a postdoc before joining the MAF team to take advantage of the opportunity to teach more while staying close to the forefront of scientific research. Read our Q&A with Micah! [...]

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