Laboratory for Materials in Medicine Pan Research Group at Illinois
Bioengineering at Illinois Engineering for Life University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign



Materials in Medicine: 3 Major Areas and Sub-topics

For more details about individual research topics, visit-

Molecular Imaging and Image-guided Therapy



Carbon Dots


The philosophy of our research is that integrated solutions to problems can be formulated by in silico-to-in vivo approach and synergistic developments in three major areas: therapeutics (e.g. drug free antimicrobial, therapy targeting stem-like cancer cells, combinatorial therapy and transcription factors), molecularly specific contrast probes and their applications in preclinical and clinical models and bio-sensing (chemical and electrochemical sensing of disease). We are uniquely converging ‘molecule making’ with ‘device making’ to solve complex biological problems.

At the laboratory for materials in medicine (MatMed) our research is multifaceted to make nanomedicine patient specific using an ‘omics’ approach and applying machine learning for diagnosis and sensing of a disease or biological process. Our research is broadly aimed at the understanding and creating defined materials for molecular imaging, drug delivery and non-viral gene delivery applications with a focus on structure, function and engineering processes. We are also dedicated to developing ‘immuno-nanomedicine’ approaches to cancer and other biomedical problems. In close collaboration with clinical scientists, we integrate basic science and engineering with medicine emphasizing image-guided drug delivery for the cardiovascular and oncologic application. Initiated originally at Washington University, at UIUC, we continue to focus on building individual proficiencies in these areas and advancing specific applications towards clinical translation, personalized nanomedicine and developing biosensors for ‘sensing’ biological processes using machine learning tools.

Pan laboratory is developing translatable technologies for human trauma. InnSight Technology, Inc. was co-founded in 2014 (co-founder: Dr. Leanne Labriola, Carle Ophthalmologists) to develop novel ophthalmic devices to address unmet needs within clinical ophthalmology. KaloCyte, Inc. was co-founded in 2015 (co-founders: Dr. Allan Doctor, WUSM/UMD and Dr. Phil Spinella, WUSM) to develop next-generation synthetic blood for trauma.

With a demonstrated track record of translating academic research to the market/clinic and working closely with clinicians, we thrive to diminish the gap between exploratory science and clinical research and bring technologies from ‘bench-to-bedside’.