Assistant Professor of Agricultural and Biological Engineering
Meng Deng’s research interests include biomaterials, drug delivery, nanotechnology, and regenerative engineering. He received a B.E. in chemical engineering in 2004 from Tsinghua University, China, and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of Virginia in 2010.
His doctoral work focused on the design and development of new polymeric biomaterials and nanostructured matrices for bone regeneration, which resulted in a number of awards including the Society for Biomaterials STAR award and an outstanding thesis award. His postdoctoral research at the University of Connecticut Health Center was focused on development of inductive material strategies for modulation of cell function and regeneration of musculoskeletal tissues. He also worked at MIT as a visiting scientist on bottom-up design of biomaterials and high throughput screening techniques. He was the recipient of the Young Scientist Award from the 2012 World Biomaterials Congress.
Deng’s research is based on the convergence of materials science, micro/nano-scale engineering, and cell biology/medicine. He seeks to develop an integrated research program for both the fundamental understanding of cellular processes in tissue development and engineering effective biomaterial systems for treatment of various diseases such as tissue/organ loss, focusing on the three thrust areas: (1) cell engineering – understanding of cellular processes and research effective methods to modulate cell function (e.g., via delivery of inducerons); (2) advanced biomaterials – rational design of new polymers and composites by exploiting synthetic chemistry and study of cell-material interactions, and (3) regenerative engineering – development of effective bioengineered systems with cell-instructive cues for regeneration of complex tissues and tissue interfaces. There are natural synergies among all the three research areas.