WHAT WE DO
The Nano-Thermal Bioengineering Laboratory (NT-BEL) focuses on fundamental understanding of biotansport issues for the brain and diagnostic systems, and develop nanotechnology-based approaches to better understand the brain and revolutionize point-of-care infectious disease diagnosis. Recent efforts focus on the laser-plasmonic nanoparticle interactions and its effects at the interface between biological systems and nanomaterials. Specifically, experimental techniques and methods have been developed to understand the effects of nanoparticle plasmonic heating on proteins and lipids immediately next to the nanoparticle. This has led to new enabling tools for optical protein manipulation and molecular uncaging for the brain, and innovative diagnostic methods.
The burden of brain diseases has increased substantially over the last 25 years and will continue to grow in coming decades. Our brain is a complex system with blood flow and vessels that supply nutrients but restricts passage of most other molecules, and neuronal network that is maintained and modulated by the extracellular “chemical connectome”. The central question we pursue is: how does the molecular transport in the brain affect brain activity and function? By engineering new nanotechnologies, our long-term goal is to better understand the molecular transport and improve the treatment of brain diseases.
RESPIRATORY INFECTIOUS DISEASES DIAGNOSIS
Viral respiratory tract infection (VRTI) is the most common illness in humans and non-influenza-related VTRI costs over $40 billion annually in the United States alone. This includes respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which is among the leading causes of pediatric death secondary to pneumonia worldwide and to date there is no available effective vaccine or antiviral therapy. Early and point-of-care (POC) diagnosis of RSV is critical to isolate infection reservoirs and inform treatment decisions. The central question we pursue is: how to diagnose infections with high sensitivity and specificity in the simplest and cost-effective way? By engineering novel and improving current POC diagnostic tests, our long-term goal is to transform the current practice of infectious disease diagnosis.
WHO WE ARE
With the interdisciplinary nature of the work, our team consists of talented scientists with different backgrounds (engineering, biology, chemistry etc). We are affiliated with the Center for Advanced Pain Studies. The growth and success of our team members are our highest priority. We are always open to the most motivated individuals who can bring unique insight and expertise to join our laboratory.
We are hiring open-minded, ambitious PhD students to develop new nano-biotechnologies and tackle challenges in the brain.
To learn more about our hiring opportunities, click here.
- 5/4/2022 Yaning Liu received the PhD Research Small Grant. Congratulations!
- 4/28/2022 Dr. Zhenpeng Qin gave a webinar titled "Delivering Drugs to the Brain."
- 4/26/2022 Tiffany won the GRACE fellowship. Congratulations!
- 4/26/2022 DIAMOND work for rapid virus diagnostics has been reported by The Dallas Morning News. UT Dallas scientists develop new technology that uses gold particles to screen for viruses
- 4/21/2022 DIAMOND work for rapid virus diagnostics has been reported by Dallas Innovates. UTD Team Develops Rapid Virus Test That’s ‘150 Times More Accurate’—and They’ve Launched a Company to Commercialize It
- 4/21/2022 DIAMOND work for rapid virus diagnostics has been reported by UTD NewsCenter. UTD Engineers’ New Rapid Virus Test Raises Bar for Detection.
- 3/31/2022 Review article led by Xueqi Xu, "Towards Dynamic, Anisotropic, High-resolution, and Functional Measurement in the Brain Extracellular Space" has been accepted at Neurophotonics. Congratulations!
- 3/1/2022 Davis John has received the Undergraduate Research Scholar Award. Congratulations!
- 2/22/2022 Journal article led by Xie Chen, "Single Pulse Heating of Nanoparticle Array for Biological Applications," has been accepted at Nanoscale Advances. Congratulations!
- 2/15/2022 An article in News Medical has been published on the Plasmonic LAMP paper led by Haiyang Ye. Congratulations!
- 2/2/2022 Dan Bouzolin has received the Undergraduate Research Scholar Award. Congratulations!
- 2/1/2022 Journal article co-led by Yaning Liu and Haihang Ye, "Digital Plasmonic Nanobubble Detection for Rapid and Ultrasensitive Virus Diagnostics," has been accepted at Nature Communications. Congratulations!
Check out Newsroom for a full catalog of news from the lab.
Blake A. Wilson, Steven O. Nielsen, Jaona H. Randrianalisoa, Zhenpeng Qin
Temperature and curvature-dependent thermal interface conductance between nanoscale-gold and water from molecular simulation, ChemRxiv. (2022)
- Xueqi Xu, Xiaoqian Ge, Hejian Xiong*, Zhenpeng Qin*
Toward dynamic, anisotropic, high-resolution, and functional measurement in the brain extracellular space, Neurophotonics. (2022)
Yaning Liu, Haihang Ye, HoangDinh Huynh, Chen Xie, Peiyuan Kang, Jeffrey S. Kahn, Zhenpeng Qin
Digital plasmonic nanobubble detection for rapid and ultrasensitive virus diagnostics, Nature Communications. (2022)
Chen Xie, Peiyuan Kang, Johan Cazals, Omar Morales Castelan, Jaona Randrianalisoa, Zhenpeng Qin
Single Pulse Heating of Nanoparticle Array for Biological Applications, Nanoscale Advances. (2022)
- Haihang Ye, Chance Nowak, Yaning Liu, Yi Li, Tingting Zhang, Leonidas Bleris, Zhenpeng Qin
Plasmonic LAMP: Improving the Detection Specificity and Sensitivity for SARS-CoV-2 by Plasmonic Sensing of Isothermally Amplified Nucleic Acids, Small. (2022)
- Xie Chen, Zhenpeng Qin*
The Spatiotemporal Evolution of Temperature During Transient Heating of Nanoparticle Arrays, Journal of Heat Transfer. (2021)
Visit Publications to view our full list of journal articles and more.
- National Science Foundation (NSF)
- National Institutes of Health (NIH)
- Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT)
- Texas Medical Research Collaborative (TexasMRC)
- UT Brain Initiative
- Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs
- American Heart Association