Current Lab Members

Graduate Students

    Tatyana Saleski

    Office: G012E

    Caltech: B.S. Bioengineering 2008-2012
    University of Michigan: Ph.D. Chemical Engineering 2012-

    Research Summary: Use of synthetic microbial consortia can help to address some of the limitations of monoculture bioprocessing, including high metabolic burden on the cells and the need to optimize multiple pathways or functions in the same species. Design of synthetic microbial consortia, however, brings the challenge of identifying or engineering strains that can perform optimally within a mixed population. A mixed culture of Trichoderma reesei and Escherichia coli has been developed that can co-exist stably and directly convert cellulose to isobutanol, a promising biofuel candidate. However, isobutanol yield and titer will need to be increased for the process to be economically viable on an industrial scale. I am employing a combination of rational design strategies and directed evolution methods to develop E. coli strains that are better suited to isobutanol production when co-cultured with T. reesei on a lignocellulosic carbon source.

    Corine Jackman

    Office: G014E

    Howard Unviersity: B.S. Chemical Engineering 2013
    Univerisity of Michigan: M.S. Chemical Engineering 2015
    University of Michigan: Ph.D. Chemical Engineering 2013-

    Research Summary: There is increasing evidence suggesting that the microbial communities in the human vagina, the vaginal microbiome (VMB), play fundamental roles in the host's health and disease. The fundamental question of how the diverse microorganisms interact with one another and with their host functionally remains largely unanswered. A major focus of my research is to understand the roles of individual species in microbial communities. Specifically, my project aims to elucidate bacterial interactions in the vaginal microbiome using microfluidic droplet co-cultivation technology and extend it to further understand interactions from the host.

    Adam Krieger

    Office: G014E

    University of Michigan: B.S. Neuroscience 2014
    University of Michigan: Ph.D. Cellular and Molecular Biology 2014-

    Research Summary: Adam is currently in the Cellular and Molecular Biology PhD program having been admitted through the Programs in Biomedical Science (PIBS) program. He is interested in the different mechanisms that are used to coordinate, communicate, and process information in microbial communities. In his spare time, Adam enjoys running, soccer, the Madras Masala lunch buffet, and movies.

    David Carruthers

    Office: G010E

    Unviersity of California, San Diego: B.S. Chemical Engineering 2014
    Univerisity of Michigan: M.S. Chemical Engineering 2016
    Univerisity of Michigan: M.S. Sustainable Systems 2016
    University of Michigan: Ph.D. Chemical Engineering 2014-

    Research Summary: The combustion of fossil fuels over the last several centuries has contributed to global climate change, adverse human health effects, biodiversity loss, and unmitigated pollution. The development of sustainable pathways for alternatives to plastics and other petroleum-based chemicals remains a pressing global challenge. We analyze a production platform within which photosynthesis and biological nitrogen fixation drive bulk chemical production as a promising alternative to agricultural sugar substrates and the Haber-Bosch Process, which are common sources of carbon and nitrogen for biofermentation processes, respectively.

    James Tan

    Office: G010E

    University of Michigan: B.S. Environmental Engineering 2016
    University of Michigan: Ph.D. Chemical Engineering 2016-

    Research Summary: There currently lacks the technical capability to interrogate microbe-microbe interactions in microbial communities. However, microfluidics provides an avenue to observe and investigate microbial populations on the micron-scale in a high-throughput manner. In combination with the advances in metagenomics, metatranscriptomics, and metabolic modelling, I develop microfluidic-facilitated methods to identify and model microbial interactions in consortia capable of fiber degradation in the human gut and cyanobacterial toxin production in Lake Erie.

    Amin Mohajeri

    Office: G013E

    Azad University: B.S. Chemical Engineering 2012
    Tarbiat Modares University: M.S. Chemical Engineering 2015
    University of Michigan: M.S. Biomedical Engineering 2017-

    Research Summary: Amin is an engineer-in-mind and biologist-in-heart, who currently, is a master's student in biomedical engineering program. He is very inquisitive about the extensive application of synthetic biology and microbial consortia in mankind's future space exploration and also interested in human microbiome. At the moment, he is developing his understanding of synthetic biology, systems biology, and microbial consortia. At his free time, he loves to get into nature; and spend time with his family.

Principal Investigator

Former Members

Graduate Students

    Scott Scholz, PhD (CMB)

    Steven Wang, PhD (ChE)

    Scott Mansfield, MS (ChE)

    Jefferson Sanchez-Mayorga, MS (ChE)

    Li Yuan, MS (BME)

    Kirk Elliott, MS (BME)

    Mike Nelson, PhD (ChE)

    Jeremy Minty, PhD (ChE)

    Alissa Kerner, PhD (BME)

    Yu Chen, PhD (ChE)

    Jihyang Park, PhD (ChE)

    Marjan Varedi, PhD (ChE)

Post-Doctoral Researchers and Visiting Scholars

    Manon Couture, VS (2015)

    Chun Wan, VS

    Luqman Hakim Ahmad Mahir, VS

    Jeremy Minty,Postdoc

    Chang-Kyu Byun, Postdoc

    Minsheng Liu, Postdoc


    Marc Singer

    David Boyer


    Azzaya Khasbaatar (2017-2018)

    Xiangyu Zhao

    Ian Graves

    Jeffrey Czajka