Cover Photo Credit: Dr. Soohong Kim & Dr. Paul Blainey, Image Credit: Boyden Lab
Research in Bioengineering and Neuroengineering at MIT emphasizes development of innovative tools to enable high-resolution measurements, high-precision control, and high-throughput perturbation of biological systems, including photogenetics and genome engineering.
Image: Jose-Luis Olivares, MIT
MIT engineers devised a way to count elusive circulating tumor cells in mice, allowing them to study the dynamics of metastasis.
As tumors grow within an organ, they also release cells that enter the bloodstream. These cells can travel to other organs, seeding new tumors called metastases.
In lab tests, virus-like DNA structures coated with viral proteins provoke a strong immune response in human B cells.
By folding DNA into a virus-like structure, MIT researchers have designed HIV-like particles that provoke a strong immune response from human immune cells grown in a lab dish. Such particles might eventually be used as an HIV vaccine.
His technology platforms have benefited genomics, diagnostics and drug screening.
Microfluidics — the science of manipulating tiny amounts of fluid through channels — has been widely used in fields such as genomics, where it has helped to enable high-speed sequencing. Several years ago, Paul Blainey started to wonder why microfluidics was not used for drug screening, another application that requires analyzing huge amounts of samples quickly.
Rapid imaging method could help reveal how conditions such as autism affect brain cells.
Our brains contain trillions of synapses — the connections that transmit messages from neuron to neuron. Within these synapses are hundreds of different proteins, and dysfunction of these proteins can lead to conditions such as schizophrenia and autism.