School of Engineering
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Associate Professor of Pediatrics (Cardiology) and of Bioengineering and, by courtesy, of Mechanical Engineering
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsThe Cardiovascular Biomechanics Computation Lab at Stanford develops novel computational methods for the study of cardiovascular disease progression, surgical methods, and medical devices. We have a particular interest in pediatric cardiology, and use virtual surgery to design novel surgical concepts for children born with heart defects.
Lloyd B. Minor, MD
The Carl and Elizabeth Naumann Professorship for the Dean of the School of Medicine, Professor of Otolaryngology—Head & Neck Surgery and, by courtesy, of Neurobiology and Bioengineering
BioLloyd B. Minor, MD, is a scientist, surgeon, and academic leader. He is the Carl and Elizabeth Naumann Dean of the Stanford University School of Medicine, a position he has held since December 2012.
As dean, Dr. Minor plays an integral role in setting strategy for the clinical enterprise of Stanford Medicine, an academic medical center that includes the Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford Health Care, and Stanford Children’s Health and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. He also oversees the quality of Stanford Medicine’s physician practices and growing clinical networks.
With Dr. Minor’s leadership, Stanford Medicine has established a strategic vision to lead the biomedical revolution in Precision Health. The next generation of health care, Precision Health is focused on keeping people healthy and providing care that is tailored to individual variations. It’s predictive, proactive, preemptive, personalized, and patient-centered.
An advocate for innovation, Dr. Minor has provided significant support for fundamental science and for clinical and translational research at Stanford. Through bold initiatives in medical education and increased support for PhD students, Dr. Minor is committed to inspiring and training future leaders.
Among other accomplishments Dr. Minor has led the development and implementation of an innovative model for cancer research and patient care delivery at Stanford Medicine and has launched an initiative in biomedical data science to harness the power of big data and create a learning health care system. Committed to diversity, he has increased student financial aid and expanded faculty leadership opportunities.
Before coming to Stanford, Dr. Minor was provost and senior vice president for academic affairs of The Johns Hopkins University. During his time as provost, Dr. Minor launched many university-wide initiatives such as the Gateway Sciences Initiative to support pedagogical innovation, and the Doctor of Philosophy Board to promote excellence in PhD education. He worked with others around the university and health system to coordinate the Individualized Health Initiative, which aimed to use genetic information to transform health care.
Prior to his appointment as provost in 2009, Dr. Minor served as the Andelot Professor and director (chair) of the Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery in the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and otolaryngologist-in-chief of The Johns Hopkins Hospital. During his six-year tenure, he expanded annual research funding by more than half and increased clinical activity by more than 30 percent, while strengthening teaching efforts and student training.
With more than 140 published articles and chapters, Dr. Minor is an expert in balance and inner ear disorders. Through neurophysiological investigations of eye movements and neuronal pathways, his work has identified adaptive mechanisms responsible for compensation to vestibular injury in a model system for studies of motor learning (the vestibulo-ocular reflex). The synergies between this basic research and clinical studies have led to improved methods for the diagnosis and treatment of balance disorders. In recognition of his work in refining a treatment for Ménière’s disease, Dr. Minor received the Prosper Ménière Society’s gold medal in 2010.
In the medical community, Dr. Minor is perhaps best known for his discovery of superior canal dehiscence syndrome, a debilitating disorder characterized by sound- or pressure-induced dizziness. In 1998 Dr. Minor and colleagues published a description of the clinical manifestations of the syndrome and related its cause to an opening (dehiscence) in the bone covering the superior canal. He subsequently developed a surgical procedure that corrects the problem and alleviates symptoms.
In 2012, Dr. Minor was elected to the National Academy of Medicine, formerly the Institute of Medicine.
Assistant Professor of Bioengineering and of Neurosurgery and, by courtesy, of Electrical Engineering
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsOur group explores neuroengineering and its application to both basic and clinical neuroscience. Our goal is to develop brain-machine interfaces as a platform technology for a variety of brain-related medical conditions including stroke and epilepsy.
Kim Butts Pauly
Professor of Radiology (Radiological Sciences Lab) and, by courtesy, of Electrical Engineering and of Bioengineering
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsWe are investigating and developing, and applying focused ultrasound in neuromodulation, blood brain barrier opening, and ablation for both neuro and body applications.
Mr Ryan K Pierce
BioRyan Pierce is a Lecturer in Bioengineering, and Co-Founder and CEO of Nine, a neonatal/maternal health technology company. He has served as VP of Design and Innovation at Ventus Medical, VP of Business Development at Loma Vista Medical, a healthcare investor at De Novo Ventures, and a product designer at Concentric Medical and The Foundry/Zephyr Medical. He is currently an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Rock Health, a digital health seed fund. An inventor on over two dozen U.S. patents, he holds mechanical engineering degrees from MIT and Stanford, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Associate Professor of Bioengineering
BioWe use interdisciplinary approaches including theory and experiments to understand how computation is embodied in biological matter. Examples include cognition in single cell protists and morphological computing in animals with no neurons and origins of complex behavior in multi-cellular systems. Broadly, we invent new tools for studying non-model organisms with significant focus on life in the ocean - addressing fundamental questions such as how do cells sense pressure or gravity? Finally, we are dedicated towards inventing and distributing “frugal science” tools to democratize access to science (previous inventions used worldwide: Foldscope, Abuzz), diagnostics of deadly diseases like malaria and convening global citizen science communities to tackle planetary scale environmental challenges such as mosquito surveillance or plankton surveillance by citizen sailors mapping the ocean in the age of Anthropocene.
Assistant Professor of Bioengineering and of Chemical and Systems Biology
BioDr. Lei Qi (Stanley) is Assistant Professor in the Department of Bioengineering (School of Engineering), Department of Chemical and Systems Biology (School of Medicine), and a core faculty member in Stanford ChEM-H Institute. He is one pioneer in the CRISPR technology development for genome engineering. He has developed the CRISPRi/a technologies for purposes beyond gene editing: gene regulation using CRISPR interference (CRISPRi, gene repression) and CRISPR activation (CRISPRa, gene activation), CRISPR dynamic imaging of chromatin in living cells, and CRISPRi/a high-throughput single or combinatorial genetic screens. He is also active in the field of Synthetic Biology and has developed synthetic noncoding RNAs for controlling transcription and translation. He obtained his Ph.D. in Bioengineering from the University of California Berkeley/UCSF in 2012. He joined UCSF as faculty fellow between 2012 to 2014, and joined the faculty at Stanford University since 2014. His lab currently is applying genetic engineering to rational cell design for understanding genomics and cell therapy.
Lee Otterson Professor in the School of Engineering and Professor of Bioengineering, of Applied Physics and, by courtesy, of Physics
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsSingle molecule biophysics, precision force measurement, micro and nano fabrication with soft materials, integrated microfluidics and large scale biological automation.
Hong Seh and Vivian W. M. Lim Professor in the School of Engineering and Professor, by courtesy, of Neurobiology and of Bioengineering
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsWe conduct neuroscience, neuroengineering and translational research to better understand how the brain controls movement, and to design medical systems to assist people with paralysis. These medical systems are referred to as brain-machine interfaces (BMIs), brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) and intra-cortical neural prostheses. We conduct this research as part of our Neural Prosthetic Systems Lab (NPSL) and our Neural Prosthetics Translational Lab (NPTL).
Professor (Research) of Bioengineering and, by courtesy, of Chemical Engineering
BioProfessor Smolke's research program focuses on developing modular genetic platforms for programming information processing and control functions in living systems, resulting in transformative technologies for engineering, manipulating, and probing biological systems. She has pioneered the design and application of a broad class of RNA molecules, called RNA devices, that process and transmit user-specified input signals to targeted protein outputs, thereby linking molecular computation to gene expression. This technology has been extended to efficiently construct multi-input devices exhibiting various higher-order information processing functions, demonstrating combinatorial assembly of many information processing, transduction, and control devices from a smaller number of components. Her laboratory is applying these technologies to addressing key challenges in cellular therapeutics, targeted molecular therapies, and green biosynthesis strategies.
Hyongsok Tom Soh
Professor of Radiology (Early Detection), of Electrical Engineering and, by courtesy, of Chemical Engineering and of Bioengineering
BioDr. Soh received his B.S. with a double major in Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science with Distinction from Cornell University and his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. From 1999 to 2003, Dr. Soh served as the technical manager of MEMS Device Research Group at Bell Laboratories and Agere Systems. He was a faculty member at UCSB before joining Stanford in 2015. His current research interests are in analytical biotechnology, especially in high-throughput screening, directed evolution, and integrated biosensors.
James H. Clark Professor in the School of Engineering and Professor of Chemical Engineering and of Bioengineering
BioUsing and Understanding Cell-Free Biology
Swartz Lab General Research Focus:
The current and projected research in the Swartz lab balances basic research in microbial metabolism, protein expression, and protein folding with a strong emphasis on compelling applications. The power and versatility of cell-free methods coupled with careful evaluation and engineering of these new systems enables a whole new range of applications and scientific investigation. Fundamental research on: the mechanisms and kinetics of ribosomal function, fundamental bioenergetics, basic mechanisms of protein folding, functional genomics, and metabolic pathway analysis is motivated by a variety of near- and medium term applications spanning medicine, energy, and environmental needs.
Swartz Lab Application Focus:
In the medical area , current research addresses the need for patient-specific vaccines to treat cancer. Particularly for lymphomas, there is a strong need to be able to make a new cancer vaccine for each patient. Current technologies are not practical for this demanding task, but cell-free approaches are rapid and inexpensive. We have already demonstrated feasibility in mouse tumor challenge studies and are now expanding the range of applications and working to improve the relevant technologies. Experience with these vaccines has also suggested a new and exciting format for making inexpensive and very potent vaccines for general use.
To address pressing needs for a new and cleaner energy source, we are working towards an organism that can efficiently capture solar energy and convert it into hydrogen. The first task is to develop an oxygen tolerant hydrogenase using cell-free technology to express libraries of mutated enzymes that can be rapidly screened for improved function. Even though these are very complex enzymes, we have produced active hydrogenases with our cell-free methods. We are now perfecting the screening methods for rapid and accurate identification of improved enzymes. After these new enzymes are identified, the project will progress toward metabolic engineering and bioreactor design research to achieve the scales and economies required.
To address environmental needs, we are developing an improved water filters using an amazing membrane protein, Aquaporin Z. It has the ability to reject all other chemicals and ions except water. We have efficiently expressed the protein into lipid bilayer vesicles and are now working to cast these membranes on porous supports to complete the development of a new and powerful water purification technology. The same lessons will be applied toward the development of a new class of biosensors that brings high sensitivity and selectivity.
Joseph D. Towles
BioJoseph Towles is a Lecturer jointly appointed in the Mechanical Engineering and Bioengineering Departments at Stanford University. Joe’s teaching interests are in the areas of solid mechanics, neuromuscular biomechanics, dynamical systems and control, and engineering design. His scholarship interest is in the area of engineering education. Specifically, Joe's engineering education activities include student-centric course and curricular development; assessment of student learning & engagement; and innovation in approaches to enhance student learning.
A Mechanical Engineer by training, Joe earned his BS degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland Baltimore County and his MS and PhD degrees both in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University (1996-2003). Following graduate school, Joe was a research post-doctoral fellow and subsequently a research scientist and then a research assistant professor in neuromuscular biomechanics in the Sensory Motor Performance Program at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and in the Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Department at Northwestern University (2003-2012). Additionally, Joe was a research health scientist for the Rehabilitation R&D Service in the Department of Veterans Affairs (Hines, IL) during that time and later a scientist in the neuromuscular biomechanics lab in the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (2012-2014). At the time, Joe led projects that addressed the broad question of how to restore hand function (ability to grasp objects) following cervical spinal cord injury and hemiparetic stroke using experimental and computational techniques in biomechanics. As a complement to teaching within the undergraduate and graduate curricula in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (2014-2018), and now teaching broadly within the undergraduate curricula of Mechanical Engineering and Bioengineering at Stanford, Joe's current scholarship interest has shifted to engineering education.