ChBE Ralph Peck Lecture and Charles W. Pierce Distinguished Alumnus Award

Join the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering for the 2012 Ralph Peck Lecture, “Protein Analogous Micelles: Versatile, Modular Nanoparticles,” presented by Matthew Tirrell of University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory, at 4 pm on Friday, April 20 in Perlstein Hall.

The 2012 Ralph Peck Lecture event also includes a student poster competition at 2 pm and presentation of the Charles W. Pierce Distinguished Alumni Award to T. S. Ramakrishnan, followed by a reception.  Find a complete schedule and more info on the 2012 Ralph Peck Lecture page.

Protein Analogous Micelles: Versatile, Modular Nanoparticles
Peptides are functional modules of protein macromolecules that can be displayed apart from the whole protein to create biofunctional surfaces and interfaces, or can be re-assembled in new ways to create synthetic mimics of protein structures. Each of these routes are being employed to gain new insight into protein folding and to develop new, functional, biomolecular materials. Examples of work from our laboratory in this area using peptide-lipid conjugate molecules (peptide amphiphiles) will be discussed relating to multi-functional surfaces, DNA-binding peptide assemblies, and protein analogous micelles for cancer and cardiovascular therapeutics.

Matthew Tirrell
Matthew Tirrell is the founding Pritzker Director of the Institute for Molecular Engineering at the University of Chicago and a senior scientist at Argonne National Laboratory. He specializes in polymer surface properties, adsorption, adhesion, surface treatment, friction, lubrication, biocompatibility and self-assembly. In 2009 Tirrell became the Arnold and Barbara Silverman Professor and Chair of Bioengineering at the University of California, Berkeley, with additional appointments in chemical engineering and materials science & engineering, and as a faculty scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He served in these capacities until taking his current appointment in 2011. From 1977 to 1999 Tirrell was a member of the chemical engineering and materials science faculty at the University of Minnesota, where he served as department head from 1995 to 1999. From 1999 to 2009 Tirrell was dean of engineering and professor of chemical engineering and materials at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Tirrell has co-authored approximately 300 papers and one book during his career. He has supervised approximately 80 Ph.D. students and 40 postdocs. Tirrell’s honors include membership in the National Academy of Engineering, the American Academy of Arts & Sciences and the Indian National Academy of Engineering. He also has been a Sloan and a Guggenheim Fellow, a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar, and a fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineers, of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and of the American Physical Society. From the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Tirrell has received the Allan P. Colburn Award, the Charles Stine Award, the William H. Walker Award, and the Professional Progress Awards. He was the Institute Lecturer in 2001. Additionally, Tirrell has served as a member of the Boards of Directors of the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital System and of the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation. Tirrell received a B.S. in chemical engineering at Northwestern University and a Ph.D. in 1977 in polymer science from the University of Massachusetts.

T. S. Ramakrishnan
T. S. Ramakrishnan has a B.Tech. in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. from Illinois Institute of Technology in 1985, also in chemical engineering. His Ph.D. thesis work was on enhanced oil recovery using alkaline agents under the supervision of Darsh Wasan. Ramakrishnan is currently a scientific advisor and a theme champion (research director) for carbon dioxide mitigation department at Schlumberger-Doll Research, Cambridge, MA. Prior to this he has held various responsibilities as a scientist and a program leader in the fields of flow in porous media, petrophysics, and reservoir monitoring and control. He also was responsible for coordinating multisensor integration across research and engineering centers. He has 37 patents and in excess of 80 publications in journals, proceedings and conferences. His work has led to several commercial products such as FLARE: a product that outputs downhole relative permeability based on array induction logging, the CARBONATE interpretation platform including techniques for measurement of heterogeneities in carbonates, smart completion feedback systems, well injectivity and productivity prediction, carbon dioxide monitoring, formation test evaluation, and algorithms in numerical reservoir simulation. His work on pressure and resistivity integration was implemented in the Middle East with a combined monitoring tool. He has also developed a number of laboratory techniques for core property measurements and carbon dioxide monitoring. Ramakrishnan has won the P.C.Ray award for the best undergraduate chemical engineering thesis in India. He won the Henri Doll award twice for his research work in Schlumberger, and the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) elected him a distinguished member in 2003. He was also given the SPE Formation Evaluation award in 2009.

Charles W. Pierce Distinguished Alumni Award
The Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering’s Charles W. Pierce Distinguished Alumni Awards are presented annually to alumni who have brought recognition to the department through their outstanding contributions to the advancement of the chemical and/or biological engineering professions, and to alumni who have shown exceptional dedication to the department through the generous donation of their time, effort and/or financial resources.  The award was renamed in 2007 in honor of the legacy of Charles W. Pierce, the department’s first graduate and first-known African-American chemical engineer.