Bozhi Tian (田博之)
Dr. Tian earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees in chemistry from Fudan University in Shanghai, China, and then went on to receive his A.M. and Ph.D. degrees in physical chemistry from Harvard University in 2010. With a desire to broaden his knowledge in biomedical sciences, Dr. Tian completed a postdoctoral program at both MIT and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Tian is now a professor in the physical chemistry division. His current research focuses on semiconductor-enabled fundamental understanding of subcellular biophysics, the studies of dynamics at the soft-hard interfaces, and nature-inspired systems for translational medicine. He has benefited greatly from working with a remarkable group of dedicated scientists, engineers, and medical doctors. His goal at the University of Chicago is to convey to his students and postdocs the same passion, drive, insight, and work ethic that his mentors instilled in him.
Dr. Tian’s accolades during his independent career include the Raymond and Beverly Sackler International Prize in the Physical Sciences (Physical Chemistry for Biomedical Sciences, 2023), the runner-up of Science & PINS Prize for neuromodulation (2019), inaugural ETH Materials Research Prize for Young Investigators (2017), C&EN’s Talented 12 (2017), Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) (2016), NIH new innovator award (2016), ONR young investigator award (2016), Sloan fellowship (2016), ONR director of research early career award (2015), AFOSR young investigator award (2015), Kavli fellow (2015), NSF CAREER award (2013), Searle Scholar award (2013), and TR35 honoree (2012).
Dr. Tian received the 2023 Faculty Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching and Mentoring from the University of Chicago in recognition of his dedicated efforts in teaching and mentoring. In addition to mentoring graduate students and postdoctoral scholars, Dr. Tian has also worked with numerous undergraduate and high school students. The young scientists from the Tian lab have become a Barry Goldwater Scholar, a Stamps Scholar, a Beckman Scholar, an Astronaut Scholar, multiple Science Talent Search (STS) semi-finalists and one STS finalist, and an International Chemistry Olympiad gold medalist.
Outside of the lab, Dr. Tian enjoys various forms of art.
Dr. Jiping Yue is a research scientist specialized in biomedical engineering research. He graduated from Tsinghua University and Peking Union Medical College Hospital. Jiping then worked at the World Health Organization (WHO) before joining the University of Chicago. He has years of interdisciplinary experience with molecular & cellular biology, clinical research, and virology. At UChicago, Jiping has received the National PKU Alliance’s Post-Doctoral Fellowship Award, and the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) award from the Hope Fund.
Jing Zhang joined Prof. Bozhi Tian’s group as a postdoctoral scholar at the James Franck Institute, the University of Chicago in 2021. She received her B.S. (2014) in East China University of Science and Technology (ECUST) and she earned a Ph.D. (2020) at Peking University, where her research focused on soft electrode arrays for stable electrical and optoelectronic neural interfaces. She is currently working on high-resolution neuron modulation through biocompatible semiconductors. (Click my profile for a self-introductory video)
Chuanwang Yang finished his graduate degree in environmental sciences from USTC in 2021. In his prior research, he focused on nanomaterial design for spectroscopic determination of nanotoxicity in the environment. From 2019 to 2020, Chuanwang joined the Tian lab as a joint student, where he worked on biointerfaces for biological modulation and hydrogel-based bioelectronics. He is currently back to the Tian lab as a postdoc scholar and is working on tissue-like bioelectronics and robotics. Outside of the lab, Chuanwang is a professional photographer. (Click my profile for a self-introductory video)
Jingcheng Ma joined the Tian Lab as a postdoctoral scholar in June 2022. He received his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Jingcheng’s research focuses on understanding and exploiting interesting surface phenomena of soft materials. Jingcheng is the awardee of the 2020 PPG-MRL Graduate Research Fellowship, the Chinese Government Award for Outstanding Students Abroad, and the 2022 UIUC Stanley I. Weiss Outstanding Dissertation Award.
Tiantian Guo started as a postdoc in Dr. Tian’s lab in January 2023, after receiving her Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Connecticut. Her doctoral research was dedicated to the development of innovative methods for the characterization of sensory afferents in the colorectum, with the goal of improving pain management strategies for patients with Irritable Bowel Syndrome. In her current role at the Tian lab, Tiantian is focusing her efforts on the field of biomineralization-enabled biointerfaces and bioelectronics.
Jiuyun Shi received his B.S. degree in Qiushi Honors Program of Chemistry from Zhejiang University in 2018. As an undergraduate research assistant, he worked in Prof. Robert Langer’s group at MIT. At that time, he mainly focused on the research about temperature-triggered polymeric devices for long-term drug delivery. Currently, he is a graduate student in Tian’s lab pursuing his Ph.D. in Chemistry. His research has been focused on tissue-like materials for bioelectronics and robotics, and other aspects of translational medicine. He is also developing living materials together with Dr. Yiliang Lin and Dr. Jiping Yue. In his free time, he enjoys hiking and traveling. Jiuyun has won twice the Eugene Olshansky Memorial Research Fellow.
Pengju Li received his B. Eng. in Materials Science & Engineering from National University of Singapore before he joined the graduate program in PME at the University of Chicago in 2020. Prior to PME he focused on skin-like sensortronics for robotics and human-machine interfaces in Prof. Benjamin Tee’s group. Currently, he works on the neuromorphic electrochemical and photoelectrochemical systems for biosensing and biomodulation. Pengju received the PME graduate fellowship upon admission, and received the Harper Dissertation Fellowship during the 3rd year of his Ph.D. journey. Pengju’s work embodies the fusion of artistic creativity and scientific rigor. One of his microscopic photographs has won 2nd place at UChicago Science as Art Contest 2023. More can be found on his Instagram account @nanoscale_. Outside lab, he is a violinist, table tennis player, and an avid angler.
Changxu Sun graduated from Rice University with Magna Cum Laude, majoring in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and minoring in Mathematics. During my undergraduate, I worked with Prof. Rafael Verduzco on developing flexible organic photovoltaics. My interested research area includes biocompatible, flexible and wearable electronics. I always believe that the great discovery in research should not be confined to the laboratory, but it should possess the potential to be applied to real life and to benefit people, so I’m also enthusiastic about entrepreneurship and technology commercialization. One of my role models is Elon Musk. I enjoy playing sports such as tennis, rock climbing, swimming, and also like hip-pop music. (Click my profile for a self-introductory video)
Wen Li received his B. S. in Chemistry from Nanjing University, and he joined the UChicago chemistry graduate program in 2021. In his undergraduate study, he researched on functional polymeric material based on coordination bonds. During his four-year study at Nanjing University, he developed an interest to combine software programming and hardware engineering in order to achieve the practical application of new materials. In his free time, you can find him exercising in the gym with Pengju. Wen also enjoy cycling, playing table tennis and cooking.
Zhe Cheng received his B.S. in Chemistry from Nanjing University. During his undergraduate studies, he focused on investigating the photophysical properties of carborane-based compounds and developing new luminescent materials in Prof Hong Yan’s lab. Before he joined the UChicago Chemistry graduate program, he took a gap year as a research assistant in Prof. Chao Wang’s group at Tsinghua University working on ionotronics materials synthesis and soft robotics fabrications. His research experience made him excited about tackling problems by combining his skills in both chemistry and engineering. Outside the lab, he enjoys playing badminton, basketball, and watching movies.
Saehyun Kim received B.S (Hons) in Chemistry from the National University of Singapore and joined PhD program in Chemistry at the University of Chicago in 2021. During his undergraduate, he worked on microbial biohybrid systems for solar fuel synthesis under the Reisner Group at the University of Cambridge. Under Prof. Boon Siang Yeo, his final year project focused on the electrochemical reduction of glycerol into bio-based feedstock. Saehyun seeks to merge his unique background in electrocatalysis, sustainable & green chemistry with the field of bioelectronics to produce innovative research. In his free time, he is an avid fingerstyle guitarist, a street musician, and a YouTube music creator. He loves watching films, exercising, cooking, and traveling.
Jessy Morgan is a fourth-year graduate student in the Biophysical Sciences program at the University of Chicago. She is co-advised by Dr. Bozhi Tian and Dr. Jean Greenberg. Jessica is using silicon and carbon-based nanomaterials to study peptide signaling in plants. She was awarded the NSF GRFP honorable mention in 2019, a Graduate Student Leadership Recognition Award in 2021, and the 2021 Department of Agriculture National Institute of Food and Agriculture Predoctoral Fellowship. Jessica did her undergraduate work at Smith College where she got a BA in biochemistry and her honors thesis utilized DNA origami to study nanoscale cargo transport by teams of molecular motor proteins. She is passionate about interdisciplinary science and basic research as well as outreach and mentorship. In her free time, Jessica enjoys long-distance running and traveling.
Zifan Ye did her B.Eng in Materials Science and Engineering, Imperial College London, UK. As an undergraduate research assistant, she worked in Prof. Natalie Stingelin’s group to understand the effect of host polymer on the energy transfer of organic semiconducting materials. As a visiting student, she worked in Prof. Xiaohui Wang’s group at Tsinghua University on defect structures of lead-free KNN-based piezoelectric ceramics. She is currently a graduate student from the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering. Her research involves the electronic structure of Si-based materials for optically-controlled bio-interfaces (Co-advised by Prof Giulia Galli). Zifan received the 1st place in the Annual Meeting Lightning Talk Award at the Advanced Materials for Energy-Water Systems Center (2020) and a New Investigator Travel Award from the American Physical Society Division of Chemical Physics (2019). (Click my profile for a self-introductory video)
Ellie is an undergraduate student majoring in Chemistry and pursuing a pre-med curriculum. She grew up in Chicago, Illinois, and her hobbies include reading, writing poetry, and baking.
Elaine is an undergraduate student majoring in Philosophy while completing the pre-medical curriculum. She grew up in Los Angeles, CA but has lived in Taiwan and went on a bridge year abroad in Ecuador. Outside of lab work and classes, she can be found snorkeling, playing card games, and planning her next adventure.
JJ is an undergraduate student from Tennessee majoring in biochemistry on a pre-med track. Outside of the lab, he likes watching anime, playing games, listening to music, vlogging, and eating food. (Click my profile for a self-introductory video)
Judah is an undergraduate student from Chicago majoring in biology while on the pre medicine track. Outside of the classroom and the lab, he enjoys playing chess, weightlifting, and competing on the Men’s Rugby club.
Aman is a junior majoring in law, letters, and society. His interests outside the lab lie in law, business, sustainability, and writing. He’s currently involved in student government, a venture capital firm, and various on-campus publications.
Luke is an undergraduate student from Palo Alto, CA, majoring in Molecular Engineering (chemical track). Outside of school, his main hobbies are playing saxophone and composing music on guitar, as well as collecting records, watching anime and amateur photography.