Nicholas Abbott

John T. and Magdalen L. Sobota Professor, Hilldale Professor, and Director, Materials Research and Engineering Center

Room: 3016
Engineering Hall
1415 Engineering Drive
Madison, WI 53706

Ph: (608) 265-5278
Fax: (608) 262-5434
abbott@engr.wisc.edu


Profile Summary

My technical interests revolve around colloidal and interfacial phenomena.   They span fundamental issues related to the origins of colloidal interactions through to the application of chemically tailored interfaces in chemical and biological sensors, biomedical devices and separations processes.  We have designed and synthesized a range of surfactants that incorporate molecular triggers (redox-active and light-sensitive groups) that permit reversible control of surfactant-based properties of aqueous systems.  We are exploring their use in separations processes and for the delivery of biomolecules to cells.  We are particularly interested in colloidal forces in liquid crystalline phases, and we have designed liquid crystalline interfaces that permit chemical and biomolecular events to be amplified into easily measured signals in sensors.   A third area of interest is related to interfacial engineering of wound beds, including characterization of the chemical functionality of wounds and management of microbial burden in wounds so as to promote wound healing.  These technical interests are unified by the challenge of understanding molecules and their assemblies at interfaces.

Education

  • Postdoc., Chemistry, Harvard University (1993)
  • PhD, Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1991)
  • B Eng (Chemical), University of Adelaide, Australia (1986)

Research Interests

  • interfacial phenomena
  • colloid science
  • soft materials
  • biomolecular interfaces
  • polymers, liquid crystals and surfactant
  • hydrophobic effect

Awards, Honors and Societies

  • Hilldale Professorship (2014)
  • Elected Member of National Academy of Engineering (2014)
  • Pirkey Centennial Lectureship, University of Texas-Austin (2014)
  • Amundson Lecture, University of Minnesota (2013)
  • Alpha Chi Sigma Award of AIChE for Chemical Engineering Research (2012)
  • Jeanne and Martin Sussman Lectureship, Tufts University (2012)
  • Plenary Lecture, International Conference on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (Perth, Australia) (2012)
  • Kurt Wohl Memorial Lecture, University of Delaware (2011)
  • Plenary Lecture, 11th European Conference on Liquid Crystals (Slovenia) (2011)
  • Vilas Associate, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • AAAS Fellow
  • Technology Achievement Award, MIT Club of Wisconsin for Platypus Technologies LLC (2010)
  • Charles M.A. Stine Award (AIChE) (2010)
  • Guest Professor, Department of Materials, Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH), Zürich (2005 - 2006)
  • Kellett Mid-Career Award of University of Wisconsin (2004)
  • Lectureship Award of Japan Research Institute of Materials Technology (2003)
  • Van Ness Lectures of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (2002)
  • Robert W. Vaughan Lectureship in Chemical Engineering at California Institute of Technology (2001)
  • John T. Sobota and Magdalen L. Sobota Chair in Chemical Engineering (2001)
  • Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award (1998)
  • ONR Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) (1997)
  • NSF CAREER Award (1995)
  • David and Lucile Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering (1994)
  • Camille and Henry Dreyfus New Faculty Award (1992)

Publications

 

  •  Bai, Y.; Abbott, N.L.; “Enantiomeric Interactions between Liquid Crystals and Organized Monolayers of Tyrosine-Containing Dipeptides”, Journal of American Chemical Society, 134(1), 548-558, 2012.
  •  Abras, D.; Pranami, G.; Abbott, N.L., “The Mobilities of Micro- and Nano-Particles at Interfaces of Nematic Liquid Crystals\", Soft Matter, 8, 2026-2035, 2012.
  • Carlton, Rebecca J.; Ma, C. Derek; Gupta, Jugal K.; Abbott, N.L., “Influence of Specific Anions on the Orientational Ordering of Thermotropic Liquid Crystals at Aqueous Interfaces”, Langmuir 28(35), 12796-12805, 2012.
  • Muller, J. P. E.; Aytar, B. S.; Kondo, Y.; Lynn, D. M.; Abbott, N. L., “Incorporation of DOPE into lipoplexes formed from a ferrocenyl lipid leads to inverse hexagonal nanostructures that allow redox-based control of transfection in high serum.” Soft Matter 8(24), 6608-6619, 2012.
  • Lin, I-H.; Miller, D.S.; Bertics, P.J.; Murphy, C.J.; de Pablo, J.J.; Abbott, N.L.; “Endotoxin-Induced Structural Transformations in Liquid Crystalline Droplets”, Science, 332(6035), 1297-1300, 2011.
  • Bai, Y.; Abbott, N.L.; “Recent Advances in Colloidal and Interfacial Phenomena Involving Liquid Crystals”, Langmuir, 27(10), 5719-5738, 2011.
  • Liu, X; Abbott, N.L. “Lateral Transport of Solutes in Microfluidic Channels using Electrochemically Generated Gradients in Redox-Active Surfactants”, Analytical Chemistry, 83(8), 3033-3041, 2011.
  • Acevedo-Vélez;, C.; Andre, G.; Dufrene, Y.; Gellman, S.; Abbott, N.L., “Single Molecule Force Spectroscopy of ß-Peptides that Display Well-Defined Three-Dimensional Chemical Nanopatterns”, Journal of American Chemical Society, 133(11), 3981-3988, 2011.
  • Liu, X.; Abbott, N.L, “Characterization of the Nanostructure of Complexes Formed by Single- or Double-Stranded Oligonucleotides with a Cationic Surfactant”, J. Phys. Chem. B, 114 (47), 15554-15564, 2010.
  • Kinsinger, MI; Lynn, DM; Abbott, NL “Nematic Ordering Drives the Phase Separation of Mixed Monolayers Containing Phospholipids Modified with Poly(ethylene glycol) at Aqueous-Liquid Crystal Interfaces” Soft Matter, 6(17), 4095-4104, 2010.
  • Koenig, GM; Lin, IH; Abbott, NL “Chemoresponsive Assemblies of Microparticles at Liquid Crystalline Interfaces”, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107 (9), 3998-4003, 2010.
  • Ankit Agarwal, Tahlia L. Weis, Michael J. Schurr, Nancy G. Faith, Charles J. Czuprynski, Jonathan F. McAnulty, Christopher J. Murphy, and Nicholas L. Abbott, “Surfaces Modified with Nanometer-Thick Silver-Impregnated Polymeric Films that Kill Bacteria but Support Growth of Mammalian Cells”, Biomaterials, 31(4), 680-690, 2010.
  • Koenig GM, Ong R, Cortes AD, Moreno-Razo JA, de Pablo JJ, Abbott NL., Single Nanoparticle Tracking Reveals Influence of Chemical Functionality of Nanoparticles on Local Ordering of Liquid Crystals and Nanoparticle Diffusion Coefficients, Nanoletters, 9(7), 2794-2801, 2009.
  • Liu, XY; Abbott, NL “Electrochemical Generation of Gradients in Surfactant Concentration Across Microfluidic Channels”, Analytical Chemistry, 81 (2), 772-781, 2009.
  • Gupta, JK; Abbott, NL “Principles for Manipulation of the Lateral Organization of Aqueous-Soluble Surface-Active Molecules at the Liquid Crystal-Aqueous Interface” Langmuir, 25 (4), 2026-2033, 2009.
  • Lowe, A.M., P.J. Bertics, and N.L. Abbott, “Quantitative Methods Based on Twisted Nematic Liquid Crystals for Mapping Surfaces Patterned with Bio/Chemical Functionality Relevant to Bioanalytical Assays”, Analytical Chemistry, 80(8), 2637-2645, 2008.
  • Meli, Victoria, Lin, I.-H, and Nicholas L. Abbott, “Preparation of Microscopic and Planar Oil-Water Interfaces that are Decorated with Prescribed Densities of Insoluble Amphiphiles”, Journal of American Chemical Society, 130(13), 4326-4333, 2008.
  • Claire L. Pizzey, Christopher M. Jewell, Melissa E. Hays, David M. Lynn and Nicholas L. Abbott, Yukishige Kondo, Sharon Golan and Yeshayahu Talmon, “Characterization of the Nanostructure of Complexes Formed by a Redox-Active Cationic Lipid and DNA”, Journal of Physical Chemistry B, in press 2008.
  • Jugal K Gupta, Maria-Victoria Meli, Sarah Teren, and Nicholas L Abbott, “Elastic Energy-Driven Phase Separation of Phospholipid Monolayers at the Nematic Liquid Crystal-Aqueous Interface”, Physical Review Letters, 100, 048301-, 2008.
  • Melissa E. Hays, Christopher M. Jewell, Yukishige Kondo, David M. Lynn, and Nicholas L. Abbott, “Lipoplexes Formed by DNA and Ferrocenyl Lipids: Effect of Lipid Oxidation State on Size, Internal Dynamics and Zeta-Potential”, Biophysical Journal, 93, 4414-4424, 2007.
  • Govindaraju T, Bertics PJ, Raines RT, Abbott, N.L., “Using Measurements of Anchoring Energies of Liquid Crystals on Surfaces to Quantify Proteins Captured by Immobilized Ligands”, Journal of the American Chemical Society, 129 (36): 11223-11231, 2007.
  • Liu XY, Graham MD, Abbott NL, “Methods for Generation of Spatial Gradients in Concentration of Monomeric Surfactants and Micelles in Microfluidic Systems”, Langmuir23 (19): 9578-9585, 2007.
  • Jang, C.-H.; Cheng, L.-L.; Olsen, C. W.; Abbott, N. L. “Anchoring of Nematic Liquid Crystals on Viruses with Different Envelope Structures” NanoLetters, 6; 1053-1058, 2006.
  • Nathan A. Lockwood, Jeffrey C. Mohr, Lin Ji, Christopher J. Murphy, Sean P. Palecek, Juan J. de Pablo, and Nicholas L. Abbott,  “Thermotropic Liquid Crystals as Substrates for Imaging the Reorganization of Matrigel by Human Embryonic Stem Cells”, Advanced Functional Materials, 16,  618-624, 2006.
  • Nathan A. Lockwood, Katie D. Cadwell, Frank Caruso, and Nicholas L. Abbott, “Formation of Polyelectrolyte Multilayer Films at Interfaces Between Thermotropic Liquid Crystals and Aqueous Phases”, Advanced Materials, 18: 850-855, 2006.
  • Abbott NL, Jewell CM, Hays ME, Kondo Y, Lynn DM, “Ferrocene-Containing Cationic Lipids: Influence of Redox State on Cell Transfection”, Journal of American Chemical Society, 127 (33) 11576-11577, 2005.
  • Clare BH, Abbott NL  “Orientations of Nematic Liquid Crystals on Surfaces Presenting Controlled Densities of Peptides: Amplification of Protein-Peptide Binding Events”, Langmuir, 21 (14): 6451-6461, 2005.
  • Brake, Jeffrey; Daschner, Maren; Abbott, Nicholas L. “Biomolecular Interactions at Phospholipid-Decorated Surfaces of Thermotropic Liquid Crystals”, Science, 302, 2094-2098, 2003.
  • Luk, Yan-Yeung; Abbott, Nicholas L.  “Surface-Driven Switching of Liquid Crystals using Redox- Active Groups on Electrodes”,  Science, 301(5633), 623-626, 2003.
  • Shah, R.; Abbott, N.L., “Principles for Measurement of Chemical Exposure based on Recognition-Driven Anchoring Transitions in Liquid Crystals, Science, 293, 1296-1299, 2001.
  • Gu YD, Abbott NL, “Observation of Saturn-Ring Defects around Solid Microspheres in Nematic Liquid Crystals”, Physical Review Letters, 85, 4719-4722, 2000.
  • Gallardo, B.S.; Gupta, V.K.; Jong, L.I.; Shah, R.; Eagerton, F.D.; Abbott, N.L., \"Electrochemical Principles for Active Control of Liquids on Submillimeter Scales\", Science, 283, 57-60, 1999.
  • Gupta, V.K.; Dubrovsky, T.B.; Abbott, N.L., \"Optical Amplification of Ligand-Receptor Binding Using Liquid Crystals\", Science, 279, 2077-2080, 1998.
  • Gupta, V.K.; Abbott, N.L., \"Design of Surfaces for Patterned Alignment of Liquid Crystals on Planar and Curved Substrates\", Science, 276, 1533-1536, 1997,

 

Courses

CBE 211: Chemical Process Thermodynamics
CBE 311: Thermodynamics of Mixtures
CBE 324: Transport Phenomena Laboratory
CBE 326: Momentum and Heat Transfer Operations
CBE 547: Introduction to Colloid and Interface Science
CBE 710: Advanced Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics
CBE 747: Advanced Colloid and Interface Science

Profile Summary

My technical interests revolve around colloidal and interfacial phenomena.   They span fundamental issues related to the origins of colloidal interactions through to the application of chemically tailored interfaces in chemical and biological sensors, biomedical devices and separations processes.  We have designed and synthesized a range of surfactants that incorporate molecular triggers (redox-active and light-sensitive groups) that permit reversible control of surfactant-based properties of aqueous systems.  We are exploring their use in separations processes and for the delivery of biomolecules to cells.  We are particularly interested in colloidal forces in liquid crystalline phases, and we have designed liquid crystalline interfaces that permit chemical and biomolecular events to be amplified into easily measured signals in sensors.   A third area of interest is related to interfacial engineering of wound beds, including characterization of the chemical functionality of wounds and management of microbial burden in wounds so as to promote wound healing.  These technical interests are unified by the challenge of understanding molecules and their assemblies at interfaces.


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