Microtechnologies for High-throughput High-content Developmental Biology and Neurogenetics
Location:138 DeBartolo Hall
My lab is interested in engineering micro systems to address questions in systems neuroscience, developmental biology, and cell biology that are difficult to answer with conventional techniques. Micro technologies provide the appropriate length scale for investigating molecules, cells, and small organisms; moreover, one can also take advantage of unique phenomena associated with small-scale flow and field effects, as well as unprecedented parallelization and automation to gather quantitative and large-scale data about complex biological systems. I will show microfluidic systems coupled with artificial intelligence for automated high-resolution imaging and high-throughput genetic screens in C. elegans, and chips for imaging embryos and cells for developmental and functional studies. I will show micro systems for optogenetic experiments to dissect the function of neural circuits and behavioral output. Our methods enable such systems level studies 100-1000 times faster than traditionally done, and in many occasions yield unique quantitative data that cannot be obtained otherwise.
Hang Lu is a Professor in the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. She graduated summa cum laude from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1998 with a B.S. in Chemical Engineering. She has a Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering Practice from MIT (2000). She obtained her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering in 2003 from MIT working with Dr. Klavs F. Jensen (Chemical Engineering) and Dr. Martin A. Schmidt (Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences) on microfabricated devices for cellular and subcellular analysis for the study of programmed cell death. Between 2003 and 2005, she pursued a postdoctoral fellowship with neurogeneticist Dr. Cornelia I. Bargmann (Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, Kavli Prize in Neuroscience 2012) at University of California San Francisco and later at the Rockefeller University on the neural basis of behavior in the nematode C. elegans. Her current research interests are microfluidics and its applications in neurobiology, cell biology, cancer, and biotechnology. Her award and honors include the ACS Analytical Chemistry Young Innovator Award, a National Science Foundation CAREER award, an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship, a DuPont Young Professor Award, a DARPA Young Faculty Award, Council of Systems Biology in Boston (CSB2) Prize in Systems Biology, and a Georgia Tech Junior Faculty Teaching Excellence Award; she was also named an MIT Technology Review TR35 top innovator, and invited to give the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Van Ness Award Lectures in 2011, and the Saville Lecture at Princeton in 2013. She is a member of the NIH ISD study section.