Our lab is multidisciplinary, highly collaborative, and encompasses engineering, materials, physics, chemistry, and biology. Our projects include basic soft matter science research as well as applied research. Affliated with the Center for Biofilm Engineering at Montana State University, the oldest and most well-established biofilm center in the world with over 25 years in existance, we have a large network of colleagues in both industry and academics. 

Our work includes studying population dynamics of viruses at the single cell level, the study of hibernating bacterial cells that are dormant in biofilm populations, high-throughput antibiotic screening of bacteria and bacterial biofilms, designing 3-dimensional gastric and human intestinal organoids-on-a-chip, and building bacterial biofilms using colloidal engineering. We aim to apply drop-based microfluidics for the high-throughput discovery and evolution of new biological species with exceptional properties. We are also interested in single cell genomics, which encompasses "omics" or next-generation sequencing of genomes, metabolites, and proteins in biology.

Fundamentally, we are very interested in interfacial properties of emulsions and are exploring the effect of various surfactants at the water-oil interface on their rheological properties. We are interested in understanding mass and energy transport within emulsions, such as how fluorescent dyes or molecules diffuse between drops, and how drops can remain stable to coalescence under temperature changes or centrifugal forces. 

Our work is funded by DARPA, NIH, NSF and industrial companies.

We use drop-based microfluidics, a unique method that creates picoliter-sized, monodisperse emulsions. Here are videos of some ways in which we can manipulate drops.