Prof. Polina Anikeeva

Department of Materials Science and Engineering and
the Research Laboratory of Electronics

Bio: 

Polina was born in Leningrad, USSR but grew up in St. Petersburg, Russia. She got her BS in Physics from St. Petersburg State Polytechnic University in 2003, and then spent a year as a researcher at the Los Alamos National Lab working on solar cells composed of semiconductor nanocrystals. She completed her PhD in Materials Science at MIT in 2009 with her thesis dedicated to physics-driven design of light-emitting devices based on organic materials and quantum dots. The curiosity towards biology led her to a postdoctoral fellowship in Neuroscience and Bioengineering at Stanford, where she began creating optoelectronic devices for recording and stimulation of neural activity. In 2011, Polina returned to MIT to start Bioelectronics group. The remarkable efforts of the group members have led to her tenure in 2017. In addition to the neural interface research, she is passionate about superheroes, and she uses their superpowers to help with teaching of undergraduate and graduate classes in the fields of electronics, photonics, and magnetism. Outside work, Polina is a committed distance runner and an enthusiastic rock climber.

Research Interests:
My goal is to combine the current knowledge of biology and nanoelectronics to develop materials and devices for minimally invasive treatments for neurological and neuromuscular diseases.

When I am not in the office or lab you can find me training for a marathon or working towards my next climbing grade.

Office: 8-425

Email

Administrative Assistant

Cindy Higgins

Office : 36-776

Email

Postdoctoral Fellows

Mehmet Kanik

Simons Center for the Social Brain

Office: 4-415
Email: mkanik@mit.edu

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I received my PhD degree in Materials Science and Nanotechnology at Bilkent University. In my thesis, which was titled as “Nanostructured Materials and Devices For Energy Harvesting and Sensing Applications”, I developed a new phase change mechanism of polymer piezoelectric materials, which can drastically enhance performance of such materials. I showed proof of principle, high-performance, triboelectric and piezoelectric nanoelectronic devices such as artificial skin, nano-energy-generators, chemical sensors, anthropometric artificial hand, electro-cardiac sensors. In addition to those studies mentioned above, I contributed several researches related to development of photonic band gap fibers, photoconductive nanowires, chalcogenide micro-cavity resonator arrays, conductive composite nanostructures, fiber based microfluidic channels, artificial nose and core-shell nanostructures.

 

I joined the Bioelectronics Group in 2015 and focused on diverse subjects such as neurophysiological and neuromuscular interfaces, opto-genetics and mimicking neural activities such as action potential. When I am not in the lab, I enjoy traveling, practicing martial arts or sparring.

Siyuan Rao

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 4-433
Email: syrao@mit.edu

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I received my PhD degree in Materials Physics and Chemistry at Beihang University in China in 2015. In my PhD career, my research focused on energy conversion devices, such as rhodopsin-based photoelectric cells, direct methanol fuel cells. We established several rhodopsin-based light-powering devices, like a nanochannel-modulated biocapacitor, a biosensor for pH detection. Also, I learned nanoparticles superlattice fabrication when I was a short-term visiting scholar in Monash University in Australia. In the early 2016, I joined the Bioelectronic Group at MIT. Here I am exploring the molecular mechanism of biological magnetosensation and trying to realize it in mammalian system.

Although I enjoy the time playing with chemicals or cells in the lab, I spare some time on improving my cooking skills, raising tropical fish and growing flowers.

Dekel Rosenfeld

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 8-031
Email: dekelr@mit.edu

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I completed my PhD at the Technion, where I studied the influence of mechanical forces on cells within 3D polymeric scaffolds. I than continue to work in the Technion in Prof. Levenberg lab on microfluidics and nano-droplet arrays. In January 2016, I joined the Bioelectronic Group, where I will be working on deep tissue stimulation using magnetic nano-particles and designing scaffolds for promoting nerve growth and stimulation.

Outside the lab I enjoy cooking, travelling and spending time with my family.

 

Danijela Gregurec

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 8-031
Email: gregurec@mit.edu

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I completed my PhD at CIC biomaGUNE, Spain in the group of Sergio Moya where I worked on the design of bio/inorganic interfaces of implant materials for enhancing their biological performance. Work was based on metal and oxide surface functionalization with natural and synthetic polymers and surface doping with bioactive molecules. I joined the Bioelectronics Group in 2016 to work on the development of noninvasive magnetic nanoparticle-based sensors for stimulation and imaging of the central nervous system.

Besides my research activities, I enjoy cooking and painting.

 

Po-Han Chiang

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 4-415
Email: drchiang@mit.edu

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I am a neuroscientist/electrophysiologist. I got my PhD in neuroscience at National Yang-Ming University, Taiwan (R.O.C). During my PhD training, I was studying inhibitory neuronal circuitry in rodent hippocampus and amygdala from cellular level to circuit level and behavioral level. I joined the bioelectronic group in 2016. Now I am interested in modifying thermomagnetic neuronal stimulation technique to remotely manipulate neuronal circuit in vivo with minimal invasion.

Outside my academic research, I like to travel around.

 

Dena Shahriari

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 4-415
Email: sdena@mit.edu

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I studied Bioengieering for my B.S. at UC Berkeley and completed my Ph.D in Macromolecular Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan. During my Ph.D, I worked on drug delivery techniques as well as the synthesis and engineering of nerve guidance scaffolds for spinal cord and peripheral nerve injuries. We developed microchannel scaffold designs with unprecedented open volume (over 85% compared to less than 45% state-of-the-art scaffolds). These scaffolds have provided functional sensory recovery when implanted in transected sciatic nerves of rat and minipig models as well as promising nerve guidance results in rats with transected spinal cords. In Fall 2016, I joined the Bioelectronics group where I aim to develop optoelectronic devices and to predict parameters for the optical stimulation of neurons. I am also interested in pain modulation and recording.  

If not in the lab or at a computer, I sort my thoughts on neurons while enjoying swimming or workout. I also enjoy water sports, hiking and camping.

 

Andres Canales

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 8-031
Email: andres_c@mit.edu

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After my work on developing high-resolution neural recording devices, I obtained a PhD in Materials Science and Engineering from MIT. Now, I continue to work with these probes, developing them into a shelf-ready product and working with people interested in using them.

Outside of work, I enjoy sports, particularly if they involve a racket

James Frank

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 4-415
Email: jfrank1@mit.edu

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I am an organic chemist / physiologist from Canada. After studying chemistry at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, I travelled overseas for short-term work in industry at Corden Pharma LLC in Switzerland. I then completed my PhD in Organic Chemistry at the Ludwig Maximillians University of Munich in Germany, where my research expanded into the fields of chemical biology and physiology. I joined the Bioelectronics group in 2017 to develop new methods of controlling mammalian behaviour using photo-controllable small molecules (photopharmacology).

My research interests focus primarily on the effects of lipids on cell physiology, while untangling the effects of membrane-localized signalling events on neurological disorders and endocrine pathology.

Seongjun Park

Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Office: 4-433

Email: sj_park@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics group in September 2013 after finishing a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering at Seoul National University. My previous research was about fabricating micro/nano structures and microfluidic systems for stem cell and tissue culture. Now, I’m doing a project about developing a new concept of microscale polymer scaffold for neuroregeneration combined with optogenetic techniques.

When I don’t spend my time with neurons, I usually play a piano or enjoy backpacking.

Graduate Students

Alexander Senko

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 4-433
Email: asenko@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics group in October 2013 after completing a B.S. in materials science and engineering at Cornell University. My undergraduate research was conducted mainly in the fab at the Cornell Nanoscale Facility producing and characterizing magnetic thin film materials, and later developing novel MEMS devices for scanned probe microscopy. Here at MIT, I spend most of my time synthesizing magnetic nanoparticles and thinking about how they could be used to excite neurons with stimuli other than heat.

When I can make it out of Boston I enjoy skiing and hiking. My favorite outdoor activity in the city is sailing on the Charles River.

Junsang Moon

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 4-433
Email: junsang@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics group in October 2015 after completing a B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering at Seoul National University. My previous research was mainly focused on developing catalysts for energy harvesting through water splitting. Here at Bioelectronics group, I’m trying to find new applications of magnetic nanoparticles and their assemblies to excite neurons.

When I am not in the lab, I usually enjoy playing sports or cooking.

Marc-Joseph Antonini

Harvard/MIT Department of Health Science and Technology

Office: 4-415
Email: mjanto@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics group in July 2016, as a Ph.D student in medical engineering and medical physics at the Harvard/MIT HST department. After completing a mechanical and industrial engineering diploma from Arts & Métiers ParisTech, I pursued a M.Sc in biomedical engineering at the Imperial College London, where I developed a low cost 3d Printed prosthetic hand. Before joining the lab, I spent a year in the Graybiel lab learning neurosciences with Dr. Sebastien Delcasso while studying neuronal dysfunction in a new animal model of Huntington’s Disease. Here in the Bioelectronics group, I am currently working on the improvement of polymer fibers for neural recording and stimulation.

Outside engineering and Neurosciences, I enjoy playing squash and volley-ball, travelling and cooking.

Youngbin Lee

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 8-031
Email: youngbin@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics group in January 2017 after completing a B.S./M.S. in Materials Science and Engineering at Hanyang University. My previous research was mainly focused on analyzing the properties of two-dimensional materials using DFT simulations. Here at Bioelectronics group, I’m trying to find new applications of fiber lithography.

When I am not in the lab, I usually enjoy playing sports or spending time with my family.

Florian Koehler

Technical University Munich

Office: 8-031
Email: fkohler@mit.edu

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After receiving my B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology I started my M.Sc. in Neuroengineering at the Technical University Munich. I worked on biological information processing in the lab of Prof. Werner Hemmert and printed electronics in Prof. Bernhard Wolfrums group. My exchange at the École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne was focused on cleanroom work to fabricate retinal implants in the group of Prof. Diego Ghezzi. In 2017 I joined the bioelectronics group at MIT to write my master thesis about the construction of apparatuses to influence magnetosensitive Proteins.

In my free time I like to discover unknown parts of Boston, train for my next 10k or enjoy the company of friends with a beer at hand.

Atharva Sahasrabudhe

Department of Chemistry

Office: 8-031
Email: atharva@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics group in September 2017, after completing B.S/M.S in Chemical Sciences at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research-Kolkata. Much of my undergraduate research at IISER-Kolkata was interdisciplinary, spanning the fields of supramolecular chemistry, micro-opto-mechanics and photo-electrocatalysis. I completed my Masters’ Thesis working in the lab of Dr. Sayan Bhattacharyya on understanding the interfacial charge recombination dynamics in quantum-dot solar cells. I further worked as a Research Assistant in the same group developing paper-based flexible electrodes for overall water splitting. Here in the Bioelectronics group I’m trying to develop multi-functional neural interfaces for simultaneous neural recording, stimulation and detection using flexible polymer fibers.

When I am not in lab or thinking about my next experiments, I enjoy cooking or binge-reading answers on Quora !

George Varnavides

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 8-031
Email: gvarnavi@mit.edu

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Full-time graduate student | Part-time design enthusiast | Aspiring cat herder.

After completing my B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering at MIT, I joined the Bioelectronics group in November of 2017. My research focuses on heat transfer across (hard-soft) interfaces at the nanoscale, so as to better understand heat dissipation of the group’s polymer-coated magnetic nanoparticles.

I spend some of my time at Harvard, where I am co-advised by Professor Prineha Narang’s Materials Theory group.

When I’m not drawing funny phonon interaction diagrams, I enjoy camping, making generative art, and singing along to Disney YouTube videos.

Jimin Park

Department of Material Science

Office: 8-031
Email: jiminp@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics group in November 2017. I completed a B.S./M.S. in Materials Science and Engineering at Seoul National University. After completing B.S./M.S., I was in the center for biomaterials at Korea Institute of Science and Technology as a research scientist. My previous research was mainly focused on developing biomimetic materials for energy and biological purpose. Here at Bioelectronics group, I’m trying to discover new chemical/physical methods to control biological phenomena.

When I am not in the lab, I usually enjoy hiking and or listening music

Indie Rice

Harvard/MIT Department of Health Science and Technology

Office: 4-415
Email: icrice@mit.edu

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After receiving my B.S.E from the University of Michigan (Go Blue!) in biomedical engineering, I joined the Harvard/MIT Health Science Technology (HST) Department as a PhD student in the Medical Engineering and Medical Physics Program. I am jointly advised in the Bioelectronics Lab and Neuroscience Statistics Research Lab, and my research will utilize polymer fibers for intracranial monitoring and control of neural circuits involved in anesthesia.

Outside of lab, I enjoy finding great restaurants, going to yoga, and spending time outside.

Undergraduate Students

Ha Yun Anna Yoon

Department of Mechanical Engineering

Office: 4-433

Email: annayoon@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics Group in September 2015 as a freshman undergraduate in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Here, I work with the fiber subgroup, in which I am currently fabricating hydrogel-covered flexible neural probes for optogenetics.

Outside of classes and lab, I enjoy playing my flute, working out, and traveling.

Ayse Guvenilir

Department of Biological Engineering

Office: 4-415

Email: guveayse@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics Group in September 2016 as a freshman in the Department of Biological Engineering. Here, I work in the flexible fiber probes subgroup with Mehmet. My current project involves developing fiber neural probes that are to be implanted into mice models of autism.

When I am not PSETing or in lab, you can find me reading a book, playing violin, singing obnoxiously, and occasionally acting on stage.

Jeewoo (Jenny) Kang

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Office: 4-433

Email: kangjw@mit.edu

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I joined the Bioelectronics Group in September 2015 as a first year undergraduate in the Department of Chemical Engineering. Here, I am working with the fiber subgroup to develop polymer multifunctional probes for optogenetics. My current project involves fabricating a flexible neural probe coated in hydrogel to decrease modulus mismatch.

If I’m not in the lab or classroom, I’m most likely out in Boston with friends or dancing with MIT’s Asian Dance Troupe.

Previous Members

 

Ulrich Froriep
Postdoc
Currently a sales engineer at Blackrock Microsystems Europe

Marissa Jasso
Undergraduate Student
Currently a graduate student at the University of Texas at Austin

Xiaoting Jia
Postdoc
Currently an assistant professor at Virginia Techory.

Ryan Koppes
Postdoc
Currently an assistant professor at Northeastern University

Nathan Lachenmyer
Graduate Student
Currently an engineering crewman at Nervous System

Colleen Loynachan
Undergraduate Student
Currently a Marshall Scholar at Imperial College London

Alan Mohr
Undergraduate Student
Currently an undergraduate researcher in the Department of Chemical Engineering

Gabriela Romero Uribe
Postdoc
Currently a Senior Scientist at Vindico Pharmaceuticals

Jennifer Selvidge
Undergraduate Student
Currently a graduate student at the University of California, Santa Barbara

Christina Tringides
Undergraduate Student
Currently a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Geneva

Ritchie Chen
Graduate Student
Currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Chung lab at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory.

Liz Canovic
Postdoc
Currently a postdoctoral scientist in the Laboratory for Soft Bioelectronic Interface at the EPFL in Switzerland

 

Michael Christiansen
Graduate Student
Currently a National Resource Council Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Naval Research Lab in Washington, D.C.

Matt Forrester
Undergraduate Student
Currently a Mechanical Engineering Intern at Micro-Leads, Inc.

Chi (Alice) Lu
Graduate Student
Currently a Process Engineer at Applied Materials.

Jon Arizti Sanz
Visiting Graduate Student
Currently a Ph.D Student in Harvard/MIT Health Science and Technology Program

Francisco Garcia
Undergraduate Student
Currently a Ph.D Student in MIT Brain & Cognitive Sciences