Rice University bioengineer Junghae Suh has been selected for the 2018 Biotechnology Progress Award for Excellence in Biological Engineering Publication by the Society for Biological Engineering (SBE) and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE).
The award, which celebrates excellence and foundational contributions through a seminal paper, will be presented to Suh at the AIChE Annual Meeting this Oct. 28-Nov. 2 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh.
Suh, an associate professor of bioengineering and of biosciences, and associate chair of the Department of Bioengineering, specializes in designing and investigating gene delivery vectors for various applications in biomedicine. Her Synthetic Virology Laboratory, which is located in Rice’s BioScience Research Collaborative, combines broad-based knowledge of protein engineering and molecular/cell biology to engineer the properties of naturally occurring viruses for the treatment of debilitating human diseases.
Suh’s basic science and technology development has impacted a variety of fields, including tissue engineering, and the treatment of cancer, cardiovascular and neurological diseases. Since joining Rice in 2007, she has orchestrated various multi-disciplinary projects with researchers at Rice and the Texas Medical Center to develop translational therapeutic technologies. To date, her research has led to three patent applications, the publication of more than 30 refereed research papers and four book chapters.
Significant aspects of Suh’s research involves constructing protease-activatable viruses that are based on benign naturally occurring adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors, and developing biocomputing nanoplatforms that can accept exogenous light as the stimulus and produce enhanced, tunable, and spatially resolved transgene expression.
New research in her lab is supported by two research project grants by the National Institutes of Health to fight heart disease and cancer through the development and testing of therapeutic genes delivered by viruses.
The Society for Biological Engineering (SBE), an AIChE Technological Community, is a global organization of leading engineers and scientists dedicated to advancing the integration of biology with engineering.