John T. and Magdalen L. Sobota Professor, Hilldale Professor, and Director, Wisconsin Materials Research and Engineering Center
1415 Engineering Drive
Madison, WI 53706
Ph: (608) 265-5278
Fax: (608) 262-5434
Chemical and Biological Engineering
Materials Science and Engineering, University of Wisconsin Comprehensive Cancer Center
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.