NEBEC 2019 Invited Speakers

The program will highlight a keynote speaker in the morning from the Rutgers Global Health Institute on Day 1, the Rutgers Brain Health Institute on Day 2, and the Cancer Institute of New Jersey at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical Center on Day 3.


Day 1 Keynote Speaker: Mark Pierce, PhD
Global Health Institute
Dr. Pierce's broad interests lie in the development and application of engineering solutions to global health challenges. A particular focus is in the area of biomedical imaging technologies, ranging from new techniques in microscopy to point-of-care screening tools for identifying early-stage disease.



Day 2 Keynote Speaker: KiBum Lee, PhD
Brain Health Institute
Dr. Lee's research develops and integrates nanotechnology and chemical biology to modulate signaling pathways in cancer and stem cells. His research focuses on identifying the various microenvironmental cues (e.g. soluble signals, cell-cell interactions, and insoluble/physical signals) affecting stem cell and cancer cell fate and thereafter utilizing these cues for the neuro-differentiation of stem cells and apoptosis of brain tumor cells. In addition, he develops novel nanomaterials for applications such as cancer therapy, molecular imaging and bio-sensing.



Shridar Ganesan, MD, PhD
Dr. Ganesan's research revolves around breast cancer biology and DNA repair.  He is exploring how DNA repair defects in cancers can be exploited to develop novel effective treatments. He is also applying next-generation sequencing technology to identify specific genomic changes in cancers that can be therapeutically targeted. As a physician/scientist he runs a basic research laboratory and sees patients. Dr. Ganesan works collaboratively with experts across multi-disciplines and puts theory into practice as he strives to develop the next generation of targeted treatments for breast cancer. 


Steven Leist, PhD
SunP Biotech

Steven Leist is the Director of Operations at SunP Biotech, a biotechnology company, and has worked on the development of 3D bioprinting systems and biomaterials. Steven graduated with his PhD in Mechanical Engineering from Drexel University, where he studied 4D printing and shape changing materials.

SunP Biotech is an advanced research and manufacturing company specializing in 3D bio-printing and tissue engineering. Based on proprietary technologies, they focus on developing innovative 3D bio-printing systems and their applications in the field of advanced drug discovery/testing, cancer research, and personalized tissue engineered products. Their current R&D products include 3D bio-materials printing systems, bioinks, and cell/tissue/organ-on-a-chip devices.

Dr. Leist's lecture will cover cutting-edge research that is being done around the world utilizing 3D bio-printing technologies. From bone scaffolds for cartilage repair to printing tumor models for drug testing, from 3D microfluidic liver models to printing synthetic blood vessels, scientists are rapidly finding solutions to biomedical challenges. Learn about how 3D-bioprinting can revolutionize the world of medicine and engineering.



Evi Chnari, PhD
Musculoskeletal Tissue Foundation (MTF) Biologics
Dr. Chnari is the Director of Product Development at Musculoskeletal Tissue Foundation (MTF) Biologics. Her work focuses on the development of orthopedic tissue forms and medical devices.

MTF is the largest tissue bank in the world; MTF Biologics is a non-profit service organization dedicated to providing clinically sound, safe allograft tissue. They are a national consortium of academic medical institutions, organ procurement organizations and tissue recovery organizations. MTF works to make more safe tissue available to patients by building strong relationships with leading organ, eye and tissue recovery organizations. They aim to provide the highest quality tissue by having the most stringent standards in the industry. Their work advances the science of tissue transplantation through their commitment to research and development.




C. Alex DePaula, PhD
Johnson & Johnson, DePuy Synthes
Dr. DePaula is a Scientist at Johnson & Johnson, DePuy Synthes. He has developed novel implantable medical devices for orthopedic trauma, spine, and general surgery related to hernia repair. He has also developed combination products related to implantable devices containing anti-infective API's and evaluated new technologies for acquisition and licensing. Dr. DePaula also evaluates novel medical devices and combination products (medical device/drug) for safety and efficacy using in vitro and in vivo testing.



  • Jinho Ki, PhD
    Stevens Institute of Technology
    Section: Regenerative Medicine I
  • Mehmet Kurt, PhD
    Stevens Institute of Technology
    Section: Brain Health/NeuroEngineering
  • Marcin Iwanicki, PhD
    Stevens Institute of Technology
    Section: Cancer Biology
  • Peter Galie, PhD
    Rowan University
    Section: Regenerative Medicine II
  • Carlotta Mummolo, PhD
    Section: Nutrition/Health or Device Development
  • Vincent Beachley, PhD
    Rowan University
    Section: Regenerative Medicine II
  • Sebastian Vega, PhD
    Rowan University
    Section: Biomaterials I
  • Jiwook Shim, PhD
    Rowan University
    Section: Molecular and Cellular Bioengineering
  • Raviraj Nataraj, PhD
    Stevens Institute of Technology
    Section: Rehabilitation
  • Alex Zhou
    Section: Rehabilitation



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