University of North Carolina and North Carolina State University
Nancy L. Allbritton is the Kenan Professor of Chemistry and Biomedical Engineering and Chair of the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) and North Carolina State University (NC State).
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Her research focuses on the development of novel technologies for applications in single-cell analysis, micro-arrays and fluidics, and organ-on-chip and has resulted in over 180 full-length journal publications and patents and led to 15 commercial products. Her research program has been well funded by the National Institutes of Health with $60 million in grant funding since 1994. Four companies have been formed based on her research discoveries: Protein Simple (acquired by Bio-Techne in 2014 for $308M), Intellego (subsequently integrated into International Rectifier), Cell Microsystems (www.cellmicrosystems.com), and Altis Biosystems (www.altisbiosystems.com). Dr. Allbritton is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Institute for Medical & Biological Engineering, and the National Academy of Inventors. She obtained her B.S. in physics from Louisiana State University, M.D. from Johns Hopkins University, and Ph.D. in Medical Physics/Medical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, with a postdoctoral fellowship at Stanford University.
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Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2), Spain
Prof. Laura M. Lechuga received her PhD in Chemistry from the University Complutense of Madrid (Spain) in 1992. She is Full Professor of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) and Head of the Nanobiosensors and Bioanalytical Applications Group at the Catalan Institute of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (ICN2) in Barcelona (Spain) and at the Networking Biomedical Research Center (CIBER-BBN).
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She has been Adjunct Professor at The Artic University of Norway (2012-2016) and Distinguished Visiting professor at University of Campinas (Brazil) (2013-2017).
The principal focus of her research is the development of novel nanobiosensor devices based on nanoplasmonics and silicon-based photonics principles, including surface biofunctionalization, microfluidics for automatic fluid delivery and complete lab-on-a-chip integration for point-of-care devices. The application of the nanobiosensor devices in a wide range of challenging clinical and environmental applications is one of her main objectives. Her research activities range from basic research to the demonstration of working sensing platforms, as well as their technological transfer to industry. She has been at the forefront at worldwide level in the field of photonic biosensors, pioneering devices as the bimodal waveguide interferometric device, the optonanomechanical sensor, or the magnetoplasmonic biosensor, among others.
She has published over 250 articles, book chapters and proceedings, has 8 families of patents, and has presented her work in more than 300 invited talks. She has co-founded two spin-offs companies. She is Associate Editor of the J. Optics and Laser Technology (Elsevier) and Analyst (RSC). She belongs to the Scientific Advisory Board of several high level national and international Centres and have participated is numerous high level evaluation panels worldwide, as ERC or SNF panels. She has received several prizes and recognitions as the Prize of Physics, Innovation and Technology from the Spanish Royal Society of Physics and BBVA Foundation in 2016 and Fellow of the Optical Society (OSA) since 2014.
Seoul National University, South Korea
Dae-Hyeong Kim obtained B.S. and M.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Seoul National University, Korea, in 2000 and 2002, respectively. He received Ph. D. degree in Materials Science and Engineering from University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign in 2009.
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From 2009 to 2011, he was a post-doctoral research associate at University of Illinois. He joined Seoul National University in 2011 and is currently an associate professor in School of Chemical and Biological Engineering of Seoul National University. He also has been serving as an associate director of Center for Nanoparticle Research of Institute for Basic Science (IBS) from 2017. He has been focusing on the research and development of materials and devices for soft electronics, bioelectronics, and optoelectronics. He has been recognized with several awards including George Smith Award (2009), MRS Graduate Student Award (2009), Green Photonics Award (2011), TR 35 award (2011), Hong Jin-ki Creative Award (2015), SCEJ Award (2016), and Korea Young Scientist Award (2017).
Molly M. Stevens
Imperial College London, UK
Molly M. Stevens is currently Professor of Biomedical Materials and Regenerative Medicine & Research Director for Biomedical Material Sciences in the Department of Materials, Department of Bioengineering and the Institute of Biomedical Engineering at Imperial College London.
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She received her PhD from The University of Nottingham in 2000, working within the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences. She conducted her postdoctoral research within the Department of Chemical Engineering at MIT in the labs of Prof Robert Langer, where she co-developed innovative techniques for the regenerative of bone and other tissues. She joined Imperial College in 2004 and was promoted as Professor in 2008. Research in the Stevens Programme focusses on designing and developing innovative bio-inspired materials for applications in regenerative medicine, tissue engineering and biosensing.
Molly Stevens’ research has been recognised by over 20 major awards, such as the 2016 Clemson Award for Basic Research from the Society for Biomaterials, the EU40 Prize for best material scientist under the age of 40, a listing in The Times as one of the top 10 scientists under 40 and the European Life Sciences 2014 Research Group of the Year Award, amongst many others. She was recently elected to the Fellowship of the Royal Academy for Engineering and delivered the Clifford Paterson Lecture for the Royal Society in 2012. She has previously served on the Board of Reviewing Editor for Science and is Associate Editor of ACS Nano. More information on the Stevens Group can be found at http://www.stevensgroup.org.
University of Bari, Italy
Luisa Torsi is full professor of Chemistry since 2005 and is the immediate past-president of the European Material Research Society, the largest in its field in Europe. She is the first women to hold this role.
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Torsi received her laurea degree in Physics from the University of Bari in 1989 and the PhD in Chemical Sciences from the same institution in 1993. She was post-doctoral fellow at Bell Labs from 1994 to 1996. In 2005 and 2006 she was invited professor at the University of Anger and Paris 7, respectively. Presently she is adjunct professor at the Abo Academy University in Finland.
In 2010 she has been awarded with the Heinrich Emanuel Merck prize for analytical sciences, this marking the first time the prestigious award is given to a woman and to an Italian scientist. She is also the recipient of the main overall platinum 2015 prize of the Global-Women Inventors and Innovators Network. She has been also elected 2017 Fellow of the Material Research Society, one of the largest international society in this field, for pioneering work in the field of organic (bio) electronic sensors and their use for point-of-care testing. It is the first scientist to work for an Italian institution to be awarded with this recognition.
Prof. Torsi had been serving extensively as expert reviewer for the European Commission being for three years the Chair of the Chemistry Panel for the evaluation of the Marie Curie Research Fellowships. She was also member the Physical and Engineering Science 05 panel of the European Research Council for the evaluation of the consolidator grants. In 2014 she has been appointed as member of the H2020 Program Committee by the Italian Minister for Education and Research and is still serving in this role.
Torsi has authored about 180 ISI papers, including papers published in Science, Nature Materials, Nature Communications, PNAS, Advanced Materials, Scientific Reports and is co-inventor of several international awarded patents. Her works gathered almost 10.400 Google scholar citations resulting in an h-index of 49. She has given more than 170 invited lectures, including almost 25 plenary and key notes contributions to international conferences.
Awarded research funding comprises several European contracts as well as national and regional projects. She has coordinated a “European Industrial Doctorate” Marie Curie project in collaboration with Merck and is principal investigator in a Marie Curie ITN. She has also coordinated a Marie Curie ITN European network, several national PRIN projects and was principal investigator in an ICT STREP proposal. The total budget awarded to Torsi and to the consortia she has coordinated is over 5 M€. She has also been the scientific coordinator of a Structural Reinforcement PON Project awarded to UNIBA for 2012-2014 with 13 M€.
Prof. Torsi is committed to the role of model for younger women scientists. She has been giving a number of talks on this topic such as a TEDx talk and she was also member of the National Board of the STAGES European project that aims at implementing strategies to trigger structural changes addressing the issues connected with gender inequality in science.