The Lara Estroff Research Group
Making Bio-Inspiration Crystal Clear

Group Members

Principal Investigator

 

Lara Ann Estroff

lae37@cornell.edu

Associate Professor, Materials Science and Engineering

- Previous education: Swarthmore College, B.A., 1997; Yale University, Ph.D., 2003.
- Research experience: Harvard University, NIH Postdoctoral Researcher, 2003-2005.

 

Professional Background

Post-Docs/Visiting Scientists


         Netta Vidavsky

          nav25@cornell.edu
Previous Education: Ben-Gurion University, B.Sc. Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, 2006; The Hebrew University, M.Sc. Chemistry, 2010; Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel, Ph.D. 2016.

I study the formation mechanism of microcalcifications in benign and malignant breast tissues, in collaboration with the Fischbach lab in the Cornell Biomedical Department. I use high resolution cryo imaging correlated with chemical and biological identities in order to characterize the ultrastructure and properties of tissues taken from human breast tumors.

          Damian Palin

          dp449@cornell.edu
Previous Education: Queens University Belfast, M.Sc., 2007; Imperial College London, M.Sc., 2010; Delft University of Technology, Ph.D., 2017

My work focuses on the development of Biocrete - a biologically enabled/inspired stress-responsive concrete. Biocrete will heal itself when damaged forming a novel bio-inspired (seashell-like) healing material. Biocrete's damage-healing action will reduce the need to manually maintain and rebuild concrete structures, resulting in a more sustainable built environment.

         Minjee Kang

          mk2546@cornell.edu
Previous Education: POSTECH, Korea, B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering, 2012; the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering, 2018.

I study the role of extracellular vesicles in the metastasis of breast cancer to bone. There are many unanswered questions regarding how primary breast tumors can interfere with mineralization pathways and if those changes alter bone materials properties and metastasis. Tumor-shed extracellular vesicles are of interest that may contribute to such tumor-induced bone modeling. I work on the design, synthesis, and analysis of in vitro model systems to study this process.

Graduate Students

Name
Student Profile

 

Reum Scott

 

rns76@cornell.edu

 

Previous Education: University of Pennsylvania, B.S.E. Materials Science and Engineering, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering with a Minor in Mathematics, 2009 Howard University, M.S Chemistry, 2013

 

My research involves the study of directed crystallization of calcium phosphate at the nanoscale.

 

 

Jennie Russ Kunitake

 

jar566@cornell.edu

Previous Education: The Evergreen State College, B.A.S. Chemistry, 2011

 

Pathological biomineralizations such as breast cancer microcalcifications, kidney stones, and cardiovascular calcifications are not well understood, especially from a materials science perspective. Previously, in collaboration with the Fischbach lab in the Cornell Biomedical Department, we have shown that biomineral materials properties (crystallinity, size…etc) greatly impact cellular interactions and can often be correlated with the severity of pathology. My research will continue projects focused on both thorough characterization of pathological biomineralizations and subsequent informed biomimetic synthesis for use in cell-mineral experiments.

 


 

Abby Goldman

arg276@cornell.edu

Previous Education: A.B. Mount Holyoke College, Physics 2010

 

My research interests are in bio-inspired crystal growth of functional materials. I plan to investigate how the mesoscopic ordering produced by bio-inspired growth techniques can be used to tune functional material properties, like magnetic or multiferroic order.

 

Alex Boys

ajb459@cornell.edu

Previous Education: Lehigh University, B.S. in Materials Science & Engineering with a Minor in Chinese Language, 2013; Cornell University, M.S. in Materials Science & Engineering with a Minor in Biomedical Engineering, 2016

 

Alex researches biological interfaces, ranging from soft tissue-to-bone attachments to surgically repaired tissue interfaces. He is working on developing structure-function relationships for these systems by examining microscale composition, structure, and mechanics. Alex is also developing tissue engineered implants that are informed by the properties of the native tissue, derived from these structure-function relationships.

 

Amnon Ortoll-Bloch

ago26@cornell.edu

Previous Education: National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), Mexico City, B.S. in Chemistry, 2014

 

Amnon joined the Estroff group in Summer 2016 as a PhD student in Chemistry and Chemical Biology. He researches the crystal nucleation and growth mechanisms of hybrid organic-inorganic perovskites by using in situ atomic force microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and solution-phase nuclear magnetic resonance. Amnon is interested in examining the molecular-level events and interactions that develop in solution prior to and during the formation of perovskite crystals.

 

Dana V. Chapman

dvc25@cornell.edu

Previous Education: Clarkson University, B.S. Chemical Engineering, Minors in Chemistry and Mathematics, 2017

 

Dana V. Chapman is from Peru, NY, and earned her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Clarkson University. She joined the Wiesner group in Fall 2017 as a PhD student in Materials Science & Engineering to work jointly with the Estroff group on post-assembly surface functionalization of block copolymers.

Konrad Hedderick

krh89@cornell.edu

Previous Education: Northwestern University, B.S. Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

 
Konrad Hedderick is from Boston, MA and earned his B.S. in Materials Science and Engineering from Northwestern University. He joined in 2017 and is currently co-advised in the Estroff and Wiesner groups, working on in-situ AFM studies of nucleation and growth of inorganic nanoparticles on nanoconfined patterned substrates.

 

Masters Students

Name
Student Profile

Jiazhen Zhu

 

jx284@cornell.edu

Previous Education: Shanghai Jiao Tong University. B.S. Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

 

Jiazhen Xu is from Shanghai, China and received his BS degree in Materials Science and Engineering from Shanghai Jiao Tong University. Jiazhen joined the group in Fall 2017 as a M.S student and is currently working on self-assembled monolayers as nucleating surfaces to study early formation pathways of crystallographic polymorphs.

Hao Zhou

 

hz457@cornell.edu

Previous Education: University of Wisconsin, Madison; B.S. Materials Science and Engineering; B.S. Chemistry; 2017

 

Characterizing mesenchymal stem cell behavior in tissue-engineered enthesis scaffold containing hydroxyapatite gradient. My goal is to understand and control the osteogenic differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells in a highly bio-derived scaffold.

Hengyu Zhou

 

hz465@cornell.edu

Previous Education: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, B.S. Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

 

My current research focuses on the characterization of calcite growth in the presence of block co-polymers as well as metal ions by using in situ atomic force microscopy. My goal is to better understand the mechanism of calcite growth with additives of different concentration and the interactions among the nanoparticles involved in crystal growth on calcite surfaces.

Undergraduate Students

Name
Student Profile

Marina Chang

 

mpc84@cornell.edu

Education: Cornell University, Materials Science and Engineering, Class of 2019

 

My research focuses on bio-inspired calcium carbonate crystallization. My goal is to better understand the combined influence of chemical and physical environment on the polymorph and morphology of calcium carbonate crystals.

Alumni

Ethan Susca

Education: Harvey Mudd, B.S. General Engineering, 2013; Cornell University, PhD Materials Science and Engineering, 2018

Kasia Oleske

Education: University of Pennsylvania, B.S.E. Materials Science and Engineering, 2013; Cornell University, PhD Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

Jeremy Fredricks

Education: Cornell University, B.S. Materials Science and Engineering, 2015; Cornell University, M.S. Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

JooHo Kim

Education: Hanyang University, Seoul, South Korea. B.S. Materials Science and Engineering, 2015; Cornell University, M.S. Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

Fei Wu

Education: Fudan University, Shanghai, China. B.S. Macromolecular Materials and Engineering, 2011; Cornell University, PhD Materials Science and Engineering (jointly with Prof. Gourdon), 2016

Joe Carloni

Education: Binghamton University, B.S. Mechanical Engineering, 2012; Cornell University, PhD Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

Coit T. Hendley IV

Education: University of Maryland College Park, B.S. Materials Science and Engineering, Minor Nanoscience and Technology, 2012; Cornell University, PhD Materials Science and Engineering, 2017

Emily Asenath-Smith

Education: Mount Holyoke College- AB Chemistry, 2008; Alfred University- MS Ceramic Engineering,   2010; Cornell University- PhD Materials Science and Engineering, 2015
Current Position: Research Materials Engineer, US Army Cold Regions Research and Engineering       Laboratory

Allessandra DiCorato

Education:Cornell University, College of Arts and Sciences, Chemistry, Class of 2015
Current Position: PhD Student, Northwestern University

Amanda Uhl

Education: Cornell University, Materials Science and Engineering, Class of 2014
Current Position: PhD Student, University of Florida

Allison Fleck

Education: Cornell University Materials Science and Engineering, Class of 2013

Jason Dorvee

Education: UC San Diego - B.A. Space Science and Systems Engineering, 2003; B.S. Biochemistry, 2003; M.S. in Chemistry, 2005. Cornell University PhD.

Miki Kunitake

Education: Yale University - B.S. Chemistry, May 2000; U.C. Berkeley M.S. Chemistry 2007. Cornell University PhD.

Debra Lin

Education: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, B.S. Materials Science & Engineering, 2007. Cornell University PhD.

Amy Richter Blakeley

Education: B.S. North Dakota State University- 2004, M.S. Cornell University 2007Cornell University PhD.

Lauren Mangano

Education: Cornell University, College of Engineering

Class of 2011.

Elaine Higashi

Education: Cornell University, College of Engineering

Class of 2012.

Wangzhong Sheng

Education: Cornell University, College of Engineering

Class of 2012.

Rawlings Cornell Presidential Research Scholar

Ruiqi Song

Previous education: CAS - Ph.D. Physical Chemistry, 2002.

Benjamin Raterman

Education:

Master of Engineering in Materials Science & Engineering, 2006

Jamil D. Lawrence

B.S. in Materials Science & Engineering, 2006

Jiaying (Janie) Zhu

B.S. in Materials Science & Engineering, 2007

Megan A. Clements

Current contact info: Northeastern University Boston, MA

Dat T. Tran

 

Monica Schwartzman

Education: Cornell University, College of Arts and Sciences

Class of 2010

Laura Floyd

Education: Cornell University, Biological/Biomedical Engineering

Class of 2009

Hanying Li

Education: Ph. D, 2010, Cornell University; M.E., 2005, Zhejiang University; B.E. 2002, Zhejiang University

Gali Baler

Education: Cornell University, College of Engineering Class of 2008

Vijay Ravichandra

Education: Cornell University, College of Engineering Class of 2009

Zhi Wei Seh

Education: Cornell University, College of Engineering Class of 2010

Ellen Keene

Education: Ph. D, 2010, Cornell University; Smith College - B.A. Physics, May 2005.


Last Revised: 03/19/2019