Dr. Chih-Ming Ho | Homepage

   Ben Rich-Lockheed Martin Professor in UCLA School of Engineering, is the Director of Center for Cell Control. After receiving his Ph.D. from The Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Ho started career at the University of Southern California and rose to the rank of Full Professor. In 1991, he moved to the University of California , Los Angeles to lead the establishment of the micro-electro-mechanical-system (MEMS) field in UCLA and served as the founding Director of the Center for Micro Systems. To this day, the UCLA MEMS research has been recognized as one of the top programs in the world. He is the Director of Institute for Cell Mimetic Space Exploration (CMISE) and served as UCLA Associate Vice Chancellor for Research from 2001 to 2005.

   He is a pioneer of nano/micro fluidics which is the backbone technology for bio-medical analysis. Dr. Ho is also known for his contributions in bio-nano technologies and turbulence. He was ranked by ISI as one of the top 250 most cited researchers in all engineering category around the world . In 1997, Dr. Ho was inducted as a member of the US National Academy of Engineering. In the next year, he was elected as an Academician of Academia Sinica which honors scholars of Chinese origin with exceptional achievements in liberal arts and sciences. Dr. Ho holds five honorary professorships. He has published 260 papers and received 10 patents. Among over 200 presentations in the international conferences, more than 100 of them are keynote talks. Dr. Ho was elected Fellow of the American Physical Society as well as American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics for his contributions in a wide spectrum of technical areas.

   In addition to his academic accomplishments, he has made extensive contributions to the professional societies around the world. He has chaired the Division of Fluid Dynamics (DFD) in American Physical Society, which is the leading platform in the United States for scientists interested in fundamental fluid dynamics. He is on the advisory board for AIAA Journal. He is a member of the IEEE/ASME JMEMS coordinating Committee. He was on the editorial board of the ASME Journal of Fluids Engineering and the AIAA Journal. He also has served as a Guest Editor for Annual Review of Fluid Dynamics. He has served on advisory panels to provide assistance to many countries and regions including China , France , United Kingdom , Korea , Israel , Thailand , Taiwan and Japan , on the developments of nano/micro technologies. Dr. Ho also has chaired or served on numerous organizing committees of international conferences on high technology topics

The Team

Dr. Yong Chen | Homepage

   Dr. Yong Chen is a joint Professor of California NanoSystems Institute, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, and Materials Science and Engineering at UCLA. His current research focuses on nanofabrication technologies, integrated nano device and circuit, and nanoscale biological and medical sensors. Before he joined UCLA, he worked as a Scientist, a Senior Scientist, and a Master Scientist in Quantum Science Research in Hewlett-Packard Laboratories from 1996 to 2003. The research group led by him in HP demonstrated the world's highest density (40Gbits/inch2) electronic memory circuits in 2003 and the first nanoscale de/multiplexer for electric circuits. His thesis research focused on optoelectronic materials, especially on self-organized semiconductor quantum dots.

   Dr. Chen obtained his PhD degree from Materials Science and Engineering Department at University of California, Berkeley in 1996.

Dr. Genhong Cheng | Homepage

   Professor in the UCLA Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics , is a member of UCLA Molecular Biology Institute and Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. In addition, he is a visiting professor of the Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Science. Dr. Cheng is an expert in signal transduction, cell activation and cell death. He is known for his contributions to understanding the signaling and gene expression network in host defense against infections and cancers. Dr. Cheng is a recipient of numerous awards including Stop Cancer Award, Frontiers of Science Award, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Stohlman Scholar Award, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Stohlman Scholar Award and NIH Merit Award.

   The research in Dr. Genhong Cheng's laboratory at UCLA is aimed at understanding innate and adaptive immune processes in host defense against bacterial and viral infections as well as tumor surveillance. Upon recognizing pathogenic infection, host cellular receptors such as Toll-like and Nod family receptors can trigger a series of signal transduction and gene expression networks (gene programs) to initiate innate immune responses. These responses can control the replication and spread of bacteria and viruses by activating phagocytic cells, inducing antimicrobial proteins and type I interferons. In addition, the innate immune response also initiates the adaptive immune response by enhancing antigen presentation and upregulating co-stimulatory molecules. A defect in any these processes can increase host susceptibility to pathogen infection. On the other hand, over-reactive immune responses can also lead to many inflammatory diseases and metabolic syndromes. Dr. Cheng's laboratory hopes to understand both the similarities and differences in host immune responses to different types of bacterial and viral infections. Dr. Cheng's laboratory also hopes to better appreciate how we balance immune and inflammatory responses and how these responses influence other homeostatic and metabolic processes. Our goal is to develop novel strategies to enhance the immune system against pathogens and tumors while preventing inflammatory and metabolic disease.

Dr. Steven M. Dubinett | Homepage

   Dr. Steven Dubinett's research encompasses several areas of translational investigation in lung cancer. The primary focus of study assesses the impact of tumor cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) in lung cancer. He and his colleagues are investigating COX-2-dependent gene and protein expression and determining how these modify tumor invasion, angiogenesis, immunity and apoptosis in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Identification of COX-2 dependent gene regulation will allow the researchers to define new biomarkers in the COX-2 inhibitor-mediated antitumor response. Novel genes and pathways for future targeted therapies are also being identified and studied.

   Dr. Dubinett obtained his degree from New Jersey Medical School. He is currently professor of Medicine and Pathology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

Dr. Garry Nolan | Homepage

   Dr. Garry Nolan’s research encompasses Cloning/cDNA libraries, Flow Cytometry, Retroviral and Viral delivery systems, Transcription and Promoter Biology, HIV-1, Tat transporter proteins, Novel Apoptosis proteins and intracellular signaling relating to apoptosis, oncogenes and anti-oncogenes, NF-kappa B, NFAT, single cell measures of transcription.

   Dr. Nolan heads the Nolan lab at Stanford. Control of T cell signaling, machine learning of signaling states by systems biology, and leukemia/cancer autoimmunity are prominent in their studies. They use advanced Flow Cytometric analysis (FACS) of phosphoproteins in single cells to achieve many of their goals. Signaling systems can now be analyzed directly by flow cytometry and Fluorescence Activated Cell Sorting, primarily through technologies developed in their laboratory, focused on following multiple phosphoproteins in complex populations of primary cells such as mouse cells and even clinical samples. Up to 15 simultaneous parameters can be followed in single cells including multiple kinases, phosphoproteins, cell cycle proteins, and other parameters, enabling resolution of cellular activation states.

   Dr. Nolan received his BS degree from Cornell University and his Ph.D. from Stanford University. He also did postdoctoral work at MIT and Rockefeller University.

Dr. Ren Sun | Homepage

   Dr. Ren Sun’s laboratory is currently investigating the tumorigenic nature of the herpesviruses, EBV and HHV-8. They will integrate biology and nanotechnology to define the underlying mechanism, and develop new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches, with murine gammaherpesvirus 68(MHV-68) as an in vivo model. They have previously identified Rta, a molecular switch that disrupts latency and initiates the lytic cycle. Using genomic approaches, they will identify the downstream target genes, and the cellular signal transduction pathways that control the expression and function of Rta and determine the optimal combination of these cellular factors/pathways to most efficiently reactive the herpesviruses, using a microfluidic system consisting of nano transducers. They will also identify cellular genes that play a role in viral replication and investigate the underlying molecular mechanisms. Another aspect that has captured their interest is the replication mechanism of hepatitis C virus (HCV). They recently conducted genome-wide mutagenesis to build a high-resolution functional map of the HCV genome, which lays the foundation for further mechanistic studies and discoveries of novel therapeutic targets. The other challenge they undertake is to apply nanotechnologies in viral detection and therapy. They plan to build linkers between proteins and nanowires or quantum dots, which will allow them to detect various viruses simultaneously. In addition, to develop new anti-viral therapies, they will use microfluidics to select specific inhibitors of viral and cellular proteins.

    Dr. Sun obtained his Ph.D. and postdoctoral training in the Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry at Yale University School of Medicine. He arrived at UCLA in 1998 as a faculty member in the Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology. Dr. Sun is a member of the Molecular Biology Institute, the AIDS Institute, the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, the Dental Research Institute and the California NanoSystems Institute. In 2007 Dr. Sun was appointed as the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Since 2008, Dr. Sun is the Chair of the Education Committee of the California NanoSystems Institute and is the Director of UCLA’s Cross-disciplinary Scholars in Science and Technology program. Dr. Sun's research accomplishments have been recognized by the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation, which awarded Dr. Sun as the Investigator in Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease in 2002.

Dr. Michael Teitell | Homepage

   Associate Professor and Chief of Pediatric and Developmental Pathology, is a renowned specialist in cancer biology and epigenetics during immune system development and transformation. He is a recipient of the Elliot Osserman Award in support of cancer research and is a Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Scholar. Dr. Teitell was recently elected to the American Society of Clinical Investigators (ASCI).

   Michael A. Teitell is an immunologist and cancer biologist who has been on the UCLA School of Medicine faculty since joining the Departments of Pathology/Laboratory Medicine and Pediatrics in 1999. He has been Chief of the Division of Pediatric and Developmental Pathology since 2001 and was promoted to Associate Professor of Pathology and Pediatrics in 2004. Dr. Teitell earned B.S. and M.S. combined degrees as a Departmental Scholar in Biochemistry from UCLA in 1985, and earned combined M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from the UCLA Medical Scientist Training Program in 1993. His Ph.D. studies were in molecular and cellular immunology. He performed residencies in Anatomic Pathology at Harvard/Brigham and Women's Hospital and Clinical Pathology at UCSF and a fellowship in Pediatric Pathology at Children's Hospital Los Angeles. He is board-certified in each of these pathology specialties. He was a postdoctoral fellow at UCLA, Harvard/BWH and UCSF before returning to UCLA as a Clinical Instructor in Pathology in 1999. Dr. Teitell is co-Director of the UCLA T32 Tumor Immunology Training Grant and serves on the MSTP Executive and Admissions Committees and the UCLA Academic Senate Committee on Library. His awards include a FOCIS/Millenium Pharmaceuticals Award for Genomics Research, two awards from the Lymphoma Research Foundation, an award from the Margaret Early Medical Research Trust and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Scholar Award. He was elected to the American Society of Clinical Investigators (ASCI) in 2004. His laboratory research centers on signal transduction and epigenetics of immune system development and cancer, as well as developing new approaches to problems in cancer biology using nanoscale methods. His group created the first genetic animal model for germinal center based B cell lymphomas that accurately resemble the majority of lymphocyte cancers afflicting humans.

Dr. Hong Wu | Homepage

   Professor of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology at UCLA School of Medicine, is a member of UCLA Molecular Biology Institute and Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.   Her achievements include Pew Scholar Award, The V Foundation Scholar Award, Howard Hughes Investigator Award, Cheryl Whitlock Memorial Prize and James S McDonnell Foundation Award. She is the Director of the UCLA ES and Transgenic Core Facility, co-Director of GU-Prostate Cancer Program area of the UCLA Cancer Center and co-Director of Cancer Stem Cell Program area of the newly formed UCLA Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Medicine. Dr. Wu also serves on the Steering Committee of NCI Mouse Model of Human Cancer Consortium (MMHCC) and a principal investigator of NSBCC ( NanoSystems Biology Cancer Center ).

   A major focus of Dr. Hong Wu's research is to study the molecular mechanism of PTEN controlled tumorigenesis. For this, they have undertaken a combination of molecular genetics, cell biology and biochemical approaches. By analyzing cells and animals lacking the PTEN tumor suppressor, Wu and her colleagues have demonstrated that PTEN negatively regulates stem cell self-renewal, proliferation and survival. Thus, their study provides a strong link between stem cell biology and cancer biology and suggests that tumors may originate through the transformation of stem cells. They also established various animal models for human cancers, including mammary and prostate cancer models. These murine cancer models offer unique tools for both exploring the molecular mechanism underlying human cancers and for the development of new therapies. Wu's recent study demonstrated that PTEN controls p53 protein level and transcription activity, which provides a novel mechanism by which the loss of PTEN can functionally control 'two' hits in the course of tumor development by concurrently modulating p53 activity.

   Pluiropotent human embryonic stem (hES) cells provide a powerful therapeutic opportunity for treating diseases including diabetes, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. However, culture systems that allow for a reliable and controllable ES cell self-renewal proliferation and efficient differentiation are currently lacking. Dr. Wu and her colleagues have recently embarked a new line of research to face such a challenge. In collaboration with Dr. Bruce Dunn, they are in the process of developing a novel Sol-Gel/PDMS culture system for more synchronized murine ES cell (mES) differentiation.  The Wu lab also collaborates with Dr. Chih-Ming Ho and colleagues for culturing mES cells and EBs in nano-microfluid cambers to assess their growth properties and to define the optimal growth and differentiation conditions. They plan to apply the optimized nanomaterials and conditions, as pre-tested by mES culture system, to the hES cell culture to accelerate the development of hES cell-based therapies.

Dr. Ming Wu | Homepage

   Professor in the UC Berkeley Department of Electrical Engineering and Co-Director of Berkley Sensor and Actuator Center (BSAC). He is among the pioneers of the micro-optics field. His optoelectronic based smart Petri dish enable precise positioning, detection and manipulation of cells. Impacts of his micro mirror array works are widely recognized in the optical communication field. He is a Fellow of IEEE.

   Prof. Wu received the Packard Foundation Fellowship in 1992, and the Meritorious Conference Paper Award of 1994 GOMAC. He has published over 85 journal papers and 120 conference papers, contributed one book chapter, and hold 8 U.S. patents. Dr. Wu is a member of the IEEE, the American Physical Society, the Optical Society of America, URSI, and Eta Kappa Nu. His current research interests include micromachined micro-optics, Optical MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) or MOEMS, free-space integrated optics, high-speed optoelectronics, microwave photonics, high-power photodetectors, and mode-locked semiconductor lasers.   

   Dr. Wu's group has recently developed a new image-driven optical manipulation tool called “optoelectronic tweezers”. Using light-induced dielectrophoresis on a photoconductor, virtual electrode pattern is generated by projecting an LED light through a DMD spatial light modulator. A single LED is capable of generating more than 15,000 individually addressable traps. The results was published in the July 21 issue of Nature titled, "Massively Parallel Manipulation of Single Cells and Microparticles Using Optical Images".

Dr. Xiang Zhang | Homepage

   Chancellor Professor in the UC Berkeley Department of Mechanical Engineering and Director of NSF Center for SINAM, has demonstrated for the first time optical imaging of subjects in the tens of nanometers by developing a negative permittivity material-based superlens. He has made extensive accomplishments in surface plasmonic resonance field, specifically on nano-particle based sensors and in nano-scale lithography.

   Professor Zhang is a recipient of NSF CAREER Award (1997); Engineering Foundation Award (1997); SME Dell K. Allen Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer (1998) and ONR Young Investigator Award (1999). He is selected as a finalist for the 2005 Small Times Magazine Small Tech Best Researcher Award . His research was featured by media such as BBC News , MRS Bulletin (Materials Research Society), Physics Web, San Jose Business Journal .

   Dr. Zhang's current research focused on nano-scale science and technology, meta-materials, nano-photonics and bio-technologies. He has published more than 80 technical papers including publications in Science and Nature Materials. He has given over 80 invited or keynote talks at international conferences and institutions. Professor Zhang is on editorial boards of three journals. He is a co-chair of NSF Nanoscale Science and Engineering Annual Grantee Conference in 2004-2005, Chair of Technical Program of IEEE 2 nd International Conference on Micro and Nano Engineered and Molecular Systems in 2007.

   Dr. Zhang's lab aims to create a new generation of materials with novel properties. Supported by unique micro- and nano- fabrication capabilities, the lab's research focuses on the development of promising applications in nano-manufacturing, nano-imaging, bio-sensing, as well as energy conversion.