WPI's research in health and biotechnology crosses multiple disciplines and embraces a wide range of focus areas.
Cellular biology—neuronal migration and degeneration, the molecular basis of bacterial adhesion and biofilm formation
Regenerative bioscience and stem cell biology—repairing damaged hearts with adult stem cells, creating bioengineered scaffolds for soft tissue repair, developing methods to reprogram adult cells to act more like stem cells to repair wounds
Tissue mechanics and mechanobiology—exploring how mechanical forces contribute to proper growth and healing of connective tissue and bones
Biophysics—understanding metal ion transport across cell membranes, exploring the role of protein signaling pathways in disease, and uncovering the role of the cell's internal architecture in a host of biological process
Disease treatment—attacking malaria with whole-plant therapy, searching for new drug targets for common fungal infections
Animal behavior—mental flexibility in pollinating insects
Researchers turn to the vascular system of plants to solve a major bioengineering problem blocking the regeneration of human tissues and organs.
WPI scientists and researchers make new discoveries all the time. But when your research has a direct impact on loved ones, the stakes are that much higher. When the mother of Balaji Panchapakesan, associate professor of mechanical engineering at WPI and director of the Small Systems Laboratory, developed breast cancer, it spurred the creation of a new way to test for cancer cells.
WPI physicist Izabela Stroe is working to uncover the link between amyloid polypeptides and Type 2 diabetes. The exact cause of this devastating disease, the seventh leading cause of death in the country, is a mystery, but Stroe’s research is uncovering the role amyloid peptides play in the diabetes and discovering ways to stop the disease from developing.
Megan Chrobak, PhD candidate in biofabrication, says the decision to pursue her advanced degree will open career opportunities and position her well for the work she so enjoys.