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Associate Professor Gang Cheng joins the department


Dr. Gang Cheng, PhD from University of Washington Seattle (2009) joined the Chemical Engineering faculty as an associate professor with tenure. Prior to this appointment at UIC, Cheng was an associate professor and assistant professor at the University of Akron. Cheng was also an adjunct professor of Integrative Medical Sciences at Northeast Ohio Medical University.

Cheng’s group is engaged in multidisciplinary research (polymeric materials, biosensing, microbiology, molecular biology, biochemistry, and electrochemistry) centered on zwitterionic polyelectrolytes by exploring the connections between new polymer chemistry/physics and applications. Over the past seven years, Cheng’s group has made significant contributions to the field of biomaterials by designing and studying novel zwitterionic polyelectrolytes for drug delivery, biosensing, and antimicrobial coatings. The group invented several novel zwitterionic polyelectrolyte platforms with highly needed proprieties (outstanding antifouling, electrical conducting, optical sensitive, antimicrobial, mechanical, optical, and stability properties) for a variety of biomedical applications. His long-term research goal is to establish a fundamental understanding of the structure-function-property relationships of novel polyelectrolytes to design new high performance materials to address long-standing challenges in the fields of biomedicine, biotechnology and energy.

Cheng has authored over 50 peer-reviewed articles in the leading journals of the field and 11 U.S. and World patents in the areas of biomaterials and environmental microbiology. His work in biomaterials design was highlighted by Nature Materials and Science. In the past six years, he has obtained numerous awards from U.S. National Science Foundation and Department of Defense to support his research program. In 2015, he received the prestigious NSF Faculty Early Career Award.

Cheng is a dedicated teacher and he loves to interact with students. He is passionate to pass on the knowledge and the spirit of innovation to next-generation scientists and engineers via the innovative and high-quality teaching and research activities. His courses at the University of Akron were highly welcomed by both graduate and undergraduate students. Cheng believes the greatest success of a teacher is the success of his/her students.