My research program centers on polymeric mixed conductors with a focus on enhancing the bioelectronic interface. The mismatch between biological tissue and traditional optoelectronic interfaces is vast: their mechanical mismatch can prompt adverse immune response, and their mismatch between modes of information transfer result in poor signal transduction. My group harnesses polymeric materials as a means to bridge the biotic-abiotic gap. Polymer mixed conductors readily swell and transduce signals using both electrons (the language of electronics), and ions/biomolecules (the language of biology), enabling a more seamless interface. These efforts, however, suffer from a relative dearth of materials, largely limited to commercially available conducting polymer dispersions that are challenging to characterize and understand, thus impeding design of a new generation of materials. My research therefore asks the questions: why do current conducting polymers work the way they do in ion-rich, biological settings? And how can we learn from these materials in order to synthesize new ones that will push the boundaries of bioelectronics? These efforts in materials chemistry feed into proof-of-concept and translational research for monitoring and stimulating bio signals, and for regenerative medicine.
|Effective start/end date||9/15/19 → 9/14/21|
- Alfred P. Sloan Foundation (FG-2019-12046)