Bookmark and ShareShare

Advanced Technology Team -- Bios

 

Michael Aizenberg, Ph.D.

Michael Aizenberg, Ph.D., Senior Staff Scientist, Synthetic Chemistry

Having worked extensively in both academic research and industrial development, Aizenberg has broad synthetic chemistry experience -- from organic and polymer to organometallic, inorganic, and even nuclear. As a Senior Staff Scientist at the Wyss, he is mostly involved in the Programmable Nanomaterials and Adaptive Material Technologies platforms. Aizenberg received his Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute of Science in 1996. His main research interests are in using synthetic chemistry tools to design active and programmable materials and drug-delivery systems, in tissue engineering, nanoparticle synthesis, microfabrication, and in developing energy-efficient materials and devices. Contact: michael.aizenberg@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Omar Ali

Omar Ali, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Ali's research interests focus on biomaterials engineering for the development of immunotherapies. He specifically works on designing cell-instructive systems that enable the study and control of immune processes. He completed his Ph.D. in 2008 at Harvard University, where he designed materials to act as infection mimics and to program immune cells in situ. Ali initiated a collaboration with scientists at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute to develop these material systems into cancer vaccines that eradicated melanoma tumors in mice. Prior to joining the Wyss, Ali was the founding scientist at a start-up and conducted NIH-funded, preclinical work on vaccine designs for brain cancer. His prior research includes the fabrication of adhesive substrates and the development of wound healing models. Omar received his B.S.E. in chemical engineering at the University of Minnesota, and earned his Ph.D. in engineering sciences at Harvard University. Contact: omar.ali@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Anthony Bahinski

Anthony Bahinski, Ph.D., MBA, FAHA, Lead Senior Staff Scientist

Bahinski's research interests are in the development of organ-on-a-chip technology for preclinical safety and efficacy evaluation of small molecules, biologics, nanoparticles, and cellular therapies. His career spans from academic research to large Pharma, with over 15 years experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Before coming to the Wyss, Bahinski was St. Louis Site Lead for Global Safety Pharmacology at Pfizer, where he was responsible for all aspects of Safety Pharmacology for the St. Louis site (Inflammation Therapeutic Area) and a member of the leadership team responsible for global management of safety pharmacology within Pfizer. His recent research efforts were focused on development of stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes and hepatocytes for use in high throughput in vitro toxicity assays and in evaluating the efficacy and safety of cellular therapies for Regenerative Medicine. Bahinski received his Ph.D. in Physiology at Temple University School of Medicine, followed by postdoctoral work at Rockefeller University and University of Cincinnati. He received his MBA from Xavier University. Contact: tony.bahinski@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Deen Bhatta

Deen Bhatta, M.Sc., M.S., Staff Scientist

Bhatta's research interests focus on aerosol drug delivery, nanotherapeutics, and novel powder process development. He is an expert in Porous Nanoparticle Aggregate formulation and preparation via spray drying. Prior to joining the Wyss, he established and managed the laboratory at AeroDesigns, a start-up company pioneering air-based delivery systems to reimagine the consumption of food, nutrients, and medications. In addition, he conducted research in aerosolized vaccine and pulmonary drug delivery development in the laboratory of Professor David A. Edwards at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He received his M.Sc. from Tribhuvan Viswabidhyalaya in Nepal and M.S. from Miami University of Ohio. Contact: deen.bhatta@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Robert Blough

Tom Blough, MSCS, Senior Staff Engineer

Blough's professional interests focus on translating research ideas to testable prototypes and in developing manufacturing processeses that allow scale up for production. His industry experience includes extensive hands-on machining and prototype fabrications, testing, data collections, tooling design and fabrications, and productions scale up both in defense R&D and in commerical products. He has both product-design and manufacturing-process patents. In developing building materials his research and personal interests overlap: His breadth of building experience ranges from field installation to designing and overseeing the construction of testing and manufacturing facilities. He earned his BSME from the University of Texas at Arlington and his MSCS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Contact: tom.blough@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Mark Cartwright

Mark J. Cartwright, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Cartwright's research interests focus on the discovery and engineering of therapeutic and diagnostic antibodies. Before joining the Wyss, he worked in the pharmaceutical industry for three years using Phage Display for the discovery, design, and production of therapeutic monoclonal antibodies for cancer treatment. Prior research includes the study of age-related changes in preadipocytes and work in the area of neuronal differentiation and survival with a focus on neurotrophins. Cartwright has a patent stemming from his work on the isolation of a novel toxin from Borrelia Burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease. He received his B.Sc in Neurobiology from McGill University and his Ph.D. in Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics from Boston University. Contact: Mark.Cartwright@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Nicholas Conway, S.M., Staff Engineer

Conway's research interests include a broad scope of the Wyss Institutes initiative: as a staff engineer he works on Anticipatory Medical and Cellular Devices platforms as well as DNA synthesis, sequencing and design tools. Prior to joining the Wyss, he worked at Lincoln Laboratory and as a consultant in the aftermarket automotive industry. Conway is a graduate of UC Berkeley and MIT. Contact: Nick.Conway@wyss.harvard.edu

 

 

 

Ed Doherty

Ed Doherty, M.S., Senior Staff Scientist

Doherty has over 25 years of professional experience in product development, process development, clinical production, and the commercial manufacture of medical devices, biologics, and pharmaceuticals. Prior to joining the Wyss, he was developing a programmable polymer melanoma vaccine at InCytu Inc. He has also served as Director of Manufacturing and Process Development for a variety of biotechnology companies focusing on a wide range of products, including cell-derived human skin equivalents, iontophorectic drug delivery, surgical sealants, and biohybrid artificial organs. His research interests and prior experience include: tissue engineering and drug delivery, cell culture, degradable polymeric devices, and project management. Doherty received his B.S. in Biological-Chemical Technology and his M.S. in Regulatory Affairs for Drugs, Biologics, and Medical Devices from Northeastern University. Contact: Ed.Doherty@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Karel Domansky

Karel Domansky, M.S., Ph.D., Staff Engineer, Microdevice Design

Domansky's expertise includes design of microfludic devices, microsensors, BioMEMS (Biological Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) and Lab-on-a-chip technologies. He has extensive hands-on experience with a broad spectrum of microfabrication techniques involving materials ranging from silicon to polymers. During his eight years of work at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and the Hedco Microfabrication Facility, he designed and fabricated field effect transistor-based microsensor arrays for detecting complex mixtures of analytes. Prior to joining the Wyss, he spent over 11 years designing microfludic devices for advanced cell culture at MIT. He invented a perfused multiwell plate for the 3D culture of high metabolically active cells. He received a M.S. in physics from Masaryk University and a Ph.D. in physics from the Technical University of Brno. Contact: karel.domansky@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Zivthan Dubrovsky

Zivthan Dubrovsky, M.S., Lead Senior Staff Engineer

Dubrovsky has an extensive product development background across many industries. His work has translated products from ideation and invention through manufacturing, sales, and marketing. Prior to joining the Wyss, he led a product creation team for Sonos to commercialize a mesh network speaker able to be controlled wirelessly from any smartphone. He also served as Program Manager and Product Marketing Manager at iRobot Corporation, where he managed the development and transfer of iRobot’s leading technologies into saleable consumer robots. His interests and prior experience include: robotic lawn mowing, robotic vacuuming, robotic telepresence, human-robot interaction, user experience, industrial design, smartphone accessories, market strategy, and high volume production. Dubrovsky received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and his M.S. in Management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Contact: Zivthan.Dubrovsky@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Jose Fernandez-Alcon

José Fernandez-Alcon, M.S., Staff Engineer

Fernandez-Alcon's research interests involve embedded systems design, computer vision, and real-time systems. Prior to joining the Wyss, he worked in the aerospace industry on real-time simulation systems. Jose received an M.S. in Embedded Systems/Electrical Engineering from the Technische Universiteit Eindhoven and is a Telecom Engineer from the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid. Contact: jose.fernandez@wyss.harvard.edu

 

 

 

Kevin Galloway

Kevin C. Galloway, Ph.D., Staff Mechanical Engineer

Galloway's research interests are in applying knowledge of materials and manufacturing techniques (such as shape deposition manufacturing, composite part design, and standard CNC machining) toward the development of bioinspired robots. He completed his Ph.D. in 2010 at the University of Pennsylvania, where he developed a composite tunable stiffness leg and experimentally investigated the role of passive variable compliance on a hexapedal running robot. During his graduate studies, he applied his mechanical design experience toward several product development ventures including the development of an actuator based on dielectric elastomers, a traffic safety device, a medical wrap, commercialization of a tailgating product, and leading the mechanical design of a legged robot for a start-up company. Contact: Kevin.Galloway@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Geraldine Hamilton

Denise C. Gravelle, M.S., Motion Capture Lab Manager

Gravelle has 9 years of athletic footwear experience working at Reebok International. While at Reebok, she studied how different footwear designs impact sports biomechanics, athletic performance and injury prevention. She also managed a team of product test analysts and worked on the development and innovation of novel footwear designs and technologies. She has extensive experience managing Motion Capture Laboratories in both academia and industry. Her research interests span from lower extremity gait biomechanics, motor control strategies used to regain balance (slips, trips and compensatory stepping) and the effect of sensory enhancement technologies on balance, gait and athletic performance measures. Gravelle received her B.S. in Exercise Science from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and her M.S. in Biomechanics and Motor Control from the University of Oregon.
Contact: Denise.Gravelle@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Geraldine Hamilton

Geraldine A. Hamilton, Ph.D., Senior Staff Scientist

Hamilton's career spans from academic research to biotech start-ups and large Pharma, with over 10 years experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Her research focus has been on the development and application of human relevant in vitro models for drug discovery applications. She was one of the founding scientists, VP of Scientific Operations and Director of Cell Products, in a start-up biotech company (CellzDirect), that successfully translated and commercialized technology from academic research to supply the pharmaceutical industry with hepatic cell products and services for safety assessment and drug-metabolism studies. Hamilton received her Ph.D. in cell biology/toxicology from the University of Hertfordshire (England) in conjunction with GlaxoSmithkline, followed by a post-doctoral research fellowship at the University of North Carolina. Her current research interests and prior experience include: organs on-a-chip, toxicology and drug metabolism, liver cell biology, mechanisms regulating gene expression and differentiation, regulation of nuclear receptors and transcriptional activation in hepatocytes by xenobiotics, human cell isolation and cryopreservation techniques. Contact: Geraldine.Hamilton@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Suzzette Haney

Suzzette Haney, Staff Scientist

Haney is a skilled scientist with over 11 years experience in the pharmaceutical industry in both drug discovery and development groups. Her research focus has been in various in vitro ADME assays, including toxicity studies, CYP450 drug interaction studies, metabolic stability and metabolite identification assays, Caco-2 drug transporter efflux and uptake assays, and biliary clearance studies. She has extensive experience in cell isolation, cryopreservation, and cell culture, specifically with hepatocytes, and she has experience in supporting both drug discovery and late stage development projects with high quality GLP (good laboratory practices) studies. Haney's current research interests and prior experience include: organs on-a-chip, toxicology and drug metabolism, liver cell biology, mechanisms regulating gene expression and differentiation, regulation of nuclear receptors and transcriptional activation in hepatocytes by xenobiotics, human cell isolation, and cryopreservation techniques. Contact: Suzzette.Haney@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Samuel A. Inverso

Samuel A. Inverso, M.S., Ph.D., Staff Software Engineer

Inverso's research interweaves computer science and biology -- he applies computational techniques to biological problems and replicates nature's solutions in the digital space. Prior to joining the Wyss, Sam worked on the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's Disease, produced a simple method to pin-point specific brain area activity from EEG, and developed image analysis algorithms for large biological data sets. He was a software engineer at an internet startup, Kaloke Technologies, Inc., which produced online banking software, and he developed brain-computer interfaces and muscle control interfaces for mobile devices with eye-glass displays at the MIT Media Lab, Europe. Sam received his B.S. and M.S. in Computer Science at the Rochester Insitute of Technology and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience at the Australian National University, followed by postdoctoral work at the Pasteur Institute. Contact: samuel.inverso@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Mustafa Karabas

Mustafa Karabas, M.S., Staff Mechanical Engineer

Karabas' career has focused on R&D, mechanism design, rapid prototyping, FEA, and manufacturing. He started his career at Mistras Group, Inc., where he designed multi-axis custom robotic gantry systems and portable automation products for non-destructive testing in the aerospace, medical devices, metal manufacturing, and oil and gas industries. Prior to joining the Wyss Institute, he worked at Stanley Black and Decker as a design engineer in the DIY Fastening R&D group, where he designed new-to-world consumer products and filed many provisional patents for his designs, including electro-mechanical and pneumatic rebar tiers. Mustafa received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Ege University and his M.S. in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Science from University of Pennsylvania. Contact: mustafa.karabas@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Michael Karpelson

Michael Karpelson, M.Eng., Ph.D., Staff Electrical Engineer

Karpelson's research interests involve the synthesis of electronic system design and biologically inspired engineering to create novel electronic and electromechanical devices for robotic and biomedical applications. His academic and industry experience covers multiple levels of the electronic design hierarchy, including integrated circuit design, board-level design, microcontroller/embedded system development, microfabrication and the integration of electronic and mechanical systems. He received his B.Sc. and M.Eng. from Cornell University and completed his Ph.D. in 2011 at Harvard University, where he developed milligram-scale power and control electronics for flapping-wing robotic insects and other microrobotic platforms. Contact: michael.karpelson@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Mughees Khan

Mughees Khan, M.S., Ph.D., Staff Scientist, Nanofabrication

Khan’s research interests are in the areas of micro and nanofabrication methods and techniques, active materials and smart structures based sensor and actuator applications, as well as fabrication and characterization of nano-scale structures for applications in sub-wavelength optics, data storage, light generation, microscopy, bio-photonics and quantum information processing. In addition to having more than 8 years of micro and nanofabrication experience, he also has mechatronics, device design and experimental validation background. Prior to joining the Wyss, his postdoctoral work at Harvard University focused on nano-optical structures for potential bio-sensing, novel single photon devices,  nanocavity lasers  and opto-mechanics applications. He also has prior experience of providing engineering consulting services in the energy and environment sectors.  Mughees has a BSc from METU, Turkey and an MS and PhD from Texas A&M University. Contact: Mughees.Khan@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Crystal Knodel

Crystal Knodel, Staff Electrical Engineer

As a medical device design engineer, Knodel has extensive experience designing circuits for power supplies, analog signal processing, controls, amplifiers, and microcontroller interfaces and systems. She is proficient in all areas of the medical product design cycle: from concept definition and prototyping to development and manufacturing, including electrical compliance and safety testing. Her background and interests includes analog and digital electronic design, board layout, custom sensor design, IC semiconductor fabrication, and research in using nanomaterials (primarily carbon nanotubes) to create novel electronic devices. Prior to joining the Wyss Institute, Knodel was a lead engineer at Deka R&D, where she directed the hardware design and specifications for a state-of-the-art surgical system. She received her Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering degree from Northeastern University. Contact: crystal.knodel@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Daniel Leslie, Ph.D.

Daniel Leslie, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Leslie’s research interests focus on the physical and chemical forces at the interface of biological materials with medical devices. He currently works on designing non-thrombogenic, non-fouling surfaces and on pathogen-binding coatings for clinical use. He has 8 years experience developing microfluidic diagnostic assays in both industry and academia. His academic pursuits have included extension of the microelectronics analogy in microfluidics to simplify flow control, magnetic-bead assays for nucleic acids, aerosol delivery to organs-on-chips, and pathogen detection with proximity ligation assays. Dan received a B.S. in chemistry from Colorado State University and a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Virginia.
Contact: Dan.Leslie@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Nicholas Lesniewski-Laas

Nicholas Lesniewski-Laas, Staff Electrical Engineer

Nicholas' professional experience covers a broad range of topics in the fields of electrical, software, and systems engineering. Prior to joining the Wyss, he worked in the semiconductor manufacturing industry designing process control, motion control, high voltage, and interface systems for cutting edge ion implantation equipment. Nick also worked as a freelance software engineer and technical writer for a number of military, private, and academic organizations. He is a graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Contact: Nicholas.Lesniewski-Laas@wyss.harvard.edu

 

 

Daniel Levner

Daniel Levner, M.S., Ph.D., Senior Staff Scientist

Levner is developing high-sensitivity and low-cost medical diagnostic methods and instruments for the detection and identification of blood-borne bacteria and fungi, and he is working on tools for sequencing RNA and DNA in situ on the single-cell level. He received his B.A.Sc. in Engineering Science from the University of Toronto, and an M.S. in Aeronautics and Astronautics and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. Contact: daniel.levner@wyss.harvard.edu

 

 

 

Chao Li

Chao Li, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Chao's research interests include human genome sequencing, gene therapy, and gene repair. He is currently focused on developing the next-generation DNA sequencer (Polonator Genome Sequencer), 3D DNA origami structures, and polony and ribosome display technologies. Chao brings exceptional skills in both biology and computer science. This multi-disciplined skill set is unique and allows him to apply his expertise to various biomaterial evolution platform projects. Chao received his B.Sc in Computer Science from University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom and his Ph.D. in Biophysical Chemistry from University of Cambridge, also in the UK. Contact: chao.li@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Jim Niemi

James Niemi, M.S., Lead Senior Staff Engineer, Device Integration and Manufacturability

Niemi has almost 20 years of medical device research and development experience. Prior to joining the Wyss, he worked on implantable glucose sensors for Nova Biomedical. He has also served as Vice President of Research at Afferent Corporation, a start-up venture working to commercialize the stochastic resonance neuro-stimulation technology developed by Prof. James Collins at Boston University. His research interests and prior experience include: neuromuscular stimulation and control, medical imaging, implantable smart sensors and materials, as well as bioreactor and automation design. Niemi received his B.S. in Biomedical Engineering from Boston University and his M.S. in BioEngineering from Brown University. Contact: James.Niemi@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Richard Novak

Richard Novak, Ph.D., Staff Engineer, Microfabrication

Novak's research interests involve development of microfluidic devices for organ-on-chip culture and drug screening. He received his Ph.D. in Bioengineering from UC Berkeley/UC San Francisco where he investigated single cell transcriptional dynamics, early lymphoma mutation detection, and single cell culture using microfluidic droplet generators and integrated on-chip micropumps. He also developed a rapid prototyping workflow for hot embossing microfluidic chips that allows for fast testing of new designs in commercially-relevant materials. Richard is the founder of Future Scientist, a nonprofit that creates sustainable solutions through community empowerment with science and engineering education. Contact: Richard.Novak@wyss.harvard.edu

 

John Osborne

John Osborne, M.S., Senior Staff Engineer, Software

Osborne's interests focus on the development and implementation of computer software and databases as an integrated part of automated data acquisition and control systems. Prior to joining the Wyss, John implemented large-scale software systems for acquiring data, monitoring, and improving processes in the areas of healthcare, manufacturing, and pharmaceutical industries. His software has been deployed in hospitals, manufacturing plants, research institutions, oil platforms, and cruise ships. John received his B.S. and M.S. in mechanical engineering at Tufts University and was a key software developer on such applications as the ROBOLAB educational product and the IMATIS medical product suite. Contact: john.osborne@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Payal Patel

Payal Patel, M.S., Staff Scientist

Patel has 10 years of combined experience working in pharmaceutical and medical device industry. Her research experience includes transport and metabolism of xenobiotics, developing physiologically relevant in vitro models and assays, building in vitro-in vivo correlations for high throughput screening of new chemical entities. Her recent research focus prior to joining the Wyss was in the regenerative medicine field in the process development team characterizing and optimizing cell derived living skin equivalent. She received her B.S. from University of Mumbai followed by M.S. in Biotechnology from University of Massachusetts. Her skill set includes tissue engineering, various in vitro ADMETox and drug transporter assays, cell culture with primary hepatocytes, gut and kidney cell lines.
Contact: payal.patel@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Hani Sallum

Hani Sallum, M.S., Electromechanical Engineer

Sallum's professional interests and expertise include automation systems and cross-discipline electromechanical design. Prior to joining the Wyss Institute he worked in the custom automation and defense R&D industries. He has been involved in projects from a wide range of fields including energy harvesting, specialized climbing equipment, packaging lines, biotech lab automation, and autonomous robot navigation. He earned his BSME from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his MSME from Boston University. Contact: Hani.Sallum@wyss.harvard.edu

 

 

Sasha Stafford

Sasha Stafford, Staff Scientist, Analytical Development

Stafford brings to the Wyss over 10 years industrial experience in pharmaceutical development with extensive expertise in analytical development and product characterization. Prior to joining the Wyss, Stafford conducted and managed assay development, method validation, regulatory affairs, and quality control activities for a series of biotech and pharmaceutical companies advancing a wide range of therapeutic products through clinical trials to FDA approval. His research interests include: biomaterial engineering, nanobiotechnology, drug delivery, analytical development, method validation, and synthetic chemistry. Stafford received his B.S. in Chemistry from the University of California at Santa Cruz.
Contact: alexander.stafford@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Shane Stilson

Shane Stilson, M.S., Staff Electromechanical Engineer

Stilson has worked with close proximity tele-operated robots designed to aid soldiers in both full body, hard exoskeleton applications and for upper extremity, arms-only uses. He has dealt with, both, joint level control system design and actuation, as well as robot level algorithm development and testing. As a Staff Engineer at the Wyss, he focuses on robotic actuation design and development. Stilson also has experience in the areas of systems engineering and analysis, and employs design processes learned from his early years in missile control system design. He received a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Utah with a thesis in control system design of a neurotransmitter analysis system.
Contact: shane.stilson@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Mike Super

Michael Super, M.Sc., Ph.D., Senior Staff Scientist

Super’s research leverages protein engineering to design therapeutics and diagnostic devices to treat cancer, infectious & immunological diseases. Prior to joining the Wyss, Super spent 17 years in the Biotechnology industry, employed in companies ranging from start-ups to large Pharma. In industry, Super was the Director of the Protein Biochemistry, Immunobiology and Hybridoma Antibody groups, focusing on the design, development and production of therapeutic antibodies for cancer and autoimmune disease therapy. Super received his M.Sc. in Biomolecular Organization at Birkbeck College and his Ph.D. in Medical Immunology at the Institute of Child Health, University of London, followed by postdoctoral work at Harvard in Hematology/Oncology and Infectious disease.
Contact: michael.super@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Richard C. Terry

Richard C. Terry, M.S., Lead Senior Staff Scientist

Terry's research interests include applying systems-level engineering to biological problems. As a senior staff engineer at the Wyss, he is supporting efforts in DNA synthesis, DNA assembly, and DNA sequencing. Before coming to the Wyss, he designed, developed, and produced a cost-effective, high throughput, open source DNA sequencer, "The Polonator." Previously, he was the Senior Project Manager for the alignment subsystem of (CMS) Compact Muon Solenoid, the particle detector at (CERN) The Center of European Nuclear Research, in Geneva Switzerland. He also has served as a consultant for companies ranging from medical device startups to large manufacturing firms. Terry, who received his B.S. and M.S. from Boston University, has patent applications in multiple disciplines.
Contact: rich.terry@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Guy Thompson

Guy Thompson, M.S., Staff Mechanical Engineer

Thompson's work is in the Biomimetic Microsystems group, currently supporting the efforts for the organ on chip technology. Prior to joining the Wyss, he worked in a wide range of industries and with a variety of technologies ranging from jet engines to 3D printers to agricultural robotics, bringing concepts from paper to production. Guy received a dual B.S. in Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering and a M.S. in Manufacturing Engineering from Boston University.
Contact: guy.thompson@wyss.harvard.edu

 

 

Brian Turczyk

Brian Turczyk, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Turczyk's research interests include the evolution of gene engineering and sequencing platforms and their application to synthetic biology. He is currently focusing on the development of next-generation DNA synthesis, assembly, and sequencing technologies. Before joining the Wyss, Turczyk worked as a Senior Scientist at Modular Genetics, Inc., where he developed high-throughput platforms for protein and metabolic strain engineering. He is the author of two patents related to nucleic acid manipulation and synthetic biology. Turczyk received his B.S. in Biochemistry from the University of New Hampshire and his Ph.D. in Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics from Boston University School of Medicine.
Contact: brian.turczyk@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Oktay Uzun

Oktay Uzun, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Oktay's research interests and expertise are in synthesis and characterization of well-defined polymer structures and architectures to investigate their supramolecular organization and self-assembly behavior. Before joining the Wyss, he worked for Dow Chemical, where he focused on developing novel electrolyte formulations for Li-ion Battery applications and energy storage materials. He received his Ph.D. from University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he worked on using non-covalent interactions and polymer side chain modification strategy to build higher order structures between nanoparticles and polymers. He then did post-doctoral work at MIT in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, where he developed innovative synthetic routes for highly water soluble phase separated ligand containing nanoparticles and evaluated their biological applications as drug delivery vehicles and imaging agents. Contact: oktay.uzun@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Frederic Vigneault

Frederic Vigneault, M.Sc., Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Vigneault's current research interests include the development of DNA synthesis, assembly and sequencing technologies. Before joining the Wyss, he worked on systems-wide signaling models using rewrite logic tools at SRI International, and prior to SRI he worked on enabling high-throughput absolute quantification using PCR at Natural Resources Canada. Vigneault received a B.Sc in Biology at Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, an M.Sc. in Cell Biology from Concordia University, and a Ph.D. in Plant Molecular Biology at Université Laval. Contact: frederic.vigneault@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Alex Watters

Alex Watters, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Watters' research has focused on biological engineering at both the protein and cellular levels and has included stints in both academic and industry settings. Prior to joining the Wyss staff, he worked in industry developing non-antibody scaffolds for early stage drug discovery. His academic work has included using cell engineering to study actin-based cell motility as well as exploring the evolutionary pressures on protein structure. He holds a Ph.D in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Washington and a B.A. in Biology from Carleton College. Contact: alex.watters@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Jeffrey Way, Ph.D.

Jeffrey Way, Ph.D., Senior Staff Scientist

Way's current research interests are in therapeutic protein development and bioenergy. As a senior staff scientist at the Wyss, he is also supporting faculty-driven efforts in DNA synthesis and DNA assembly. Before coming to the Wyss, he was Director of Structural Biology and Director of Intellectual Property at EMD Serono, a major protein-focused pharmaceutical company, where he designed protein drugs. Previously, he was a Director of Intellectual Property and Director of Communications there. He has published numerous articles on drug development, synthetic biology, nervous system development, and bacterial genetics, and holds several patent applications and issued patents. He received his Ph.D. and B.A from Harvard University. Contact: Jeff.Way@wyss.harvard.edu

 

Justin Werfel, Ph.D.

Justin Werfel, Ph.D., Staff Scientist

Werfel's research interests are in the understanding and design of complex and emergent systems. He is currently working on the development of robotic systems motivated by biological collectives, such as ant colonies and cellular slime molds, with Wyss faculty including Radhika Nagpal and Rob Wood. He completed his Ph.D. at MIT in 2006, developing algorithms to allow swarms of simple robots to autonomously build user-specified structures. His postdoctoral research at Harvard included further exploration of collective construction, work on the evolution of cooperative and altruistic behaviors at the New England Complex Systems Institute, and cancer modeling at Harvard Medical School/Children's Hospital Boston. Contact: justin.werfel@wyss.harvard.edu.

 

 

We've won a Webby Award!

Wyss Institute is a winner of the 2012 Webby Awards in the Science category.