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SQI: Simpson Querry Institute

Jonathan Rivnay

  • Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering
PhD (2012), Stanford University

The Rivnay research group designs and develops new materials and devices to facilitate the seamless integration of sensing/actuation technologies with cells and tissue to enable improvements in diagnosis and therapy. Our research focuses on active materials such as conducting polymers due to their synthetic tunability, soft mechanical properties, demonstrated stability and compatibility with biological tissue, and their ability to take on a broad range of form factors from ultra-thin and flexible, to fibrous or scaffold-like. Importantly, these materials exhibit mixed ionic and electronic conduction, which aids in closing the signaling gap inherent to the bioelectronic interface. We utilize the unique properties of these soft, optoelectronically active materials to bridge the disparate worlds of biological systems and traditional microelectronic and optical tools.

The lab’s ongoing work makes use of electroactive polymers to realize efficient electrophysiological and biomarker-specific sensors, as well as electrical and chemical stimulators. These tools offer localized and less invasive bidirectional interfacing for in vivo applications, and are integral for high-throughput, sensitive in vitro lab-on-chip platforms used for toxicology. The design of new organic bioelectronic materials and their devices promises to influence a broad range of applications beyond electrical/chemical sensing and stimulation, including on-demand actuation for surgical and soft robotics, as well as electroactive tissue regeneration.

Areas of Interest

Conjugated Polymers, Organic Bioelectronics, Mixed Conduction