Postdoctoral Scholars

Jorge Palma
 is a postdoctoral scholar in the Nanoengineering department at UC San Diego. He earned his PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Texas A&M University, where he developed contrast agents for optical imaging techniques and designed vascular-targeted drug delivery platforms. He is currently working on tissue-mimicking phantoms for characterization and image quality assessment of photoacoustic imaging systems.







Jiajing Zhou
 is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Nanoengineering at UC San Diego. He received his Ph.D. in 2016 under the supervision of Prof. Hongwei Duan at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. After working as a research fellow in the same group for two years, he moved to Prof. Frank Caruso’s group as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Melbourne, Australia. His research focuses on the synthesis of functional nanohybrids for biomedical applications.







Yong Cheng is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Nanoengineering at UC San Diego. He received his Ph.D. in 2017 under the supervision of Prof. Fan Xia and Prof. Bifeng Liu at Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China. After working as a postdoctoral researcher in the same group for two years, he moved to Prof. Rana’s group as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Pediatrics at UC San Diego. His research focuses on the peptide-conjugated fluorescent probes and their application in cancer theranostics.






Ming Xu
 is a postdoctoral scholar in the Nanoengineering department at UC San Diego. He received his Ph.D. in Chemistry from University of Missouri-Columbia, where he worked on the development of fluorescent sensors for glycolipids and glutamate. After his graduation, he joined the Jokerst lab as a postdoctoral fellow to develop chemical probes for imaging biologically important proteases.












Zhicheng Jin is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of NanoEngineering at UC San Diego. He received his Ph.D. in 2020 under the supervision of Prof. Hedi Mattoussi at the Florida State University, where he worked on designing functional nanomaterials and developing FRET-based nanosensors for probing MMP enzymes. His research in Jokerst group focuses on the synthesis of functional polypeptides as photoacoustic contrast agents for detecting Mpro protease.








Maurice Retout
 
is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of NanoEngineering at UC San Diego. He received his Ph.D. in nanoengineering from the Free University of Brussels where he developed engineered plasmonic nanomaterials for the biosensing of cancer biomarkers. His research in the Jokerst group focuses on the development of smart plasmonic probes for the rapid diagnosis of SARS-COV-2 and the in vivo identification of P. gingivalis via photoacoustic imaging.






Ph.D. Students

C
olman Moore is a PhD candidate, NSF Graduate Research Fellow, and ARCS Fellow in the NanoEngineering Department at UCSD. He graduated from the University of South Carolina with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering and received his M.S. in NanoEngineering from UCSD. In the Jokerst Lab, he has developed activatable contrast agents for photoacoustic imaging of proteases, worked toward clinical deployment of photoacoustics in periodontology, and applied a novel analytical technique for measuring nanoscale size distributions of self-aggregating proteins in Alzheimer’s disease. He is currently working on protease-based detection of COVID-19 and periodontal disease.






Yash Mantri
 is a PhD candidate in the Bioengineering department at UC San Diego. He received his Btech. in Biomedical engineering from D.Y. Patil University in India. In the Jokerst lab he has developed activatable nanoparticle based sensors for reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (RONS), explored the fundamentals behind nanoparticle-based photoacoustic signal generation, and undertaken human clinical studies to monitor wound healing using photoacoustic imaging. He is currently studying the effects of blood pressure on photoacoustic signals and designing a colorimetric assay for COVID-19 detection.  






Tengyu He
 is a PhD student in the Materials Science and Engineering graduate program at UCSD. He received his M.S. degree in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences. At UCAS he conducted research in the application of nanomaterials in the design of stretchable electronics. He is currently studying nanomaterials for cancer theranostics and thrombus imaging.







Lei Fu
 is a PhD student in the Nanoengineering department at UC San Diego. He received his B.S and M.E. degree from Jiangnan University in China. His previous work mainly concentrates on Optical Coherence Tomography(OCT) especially OCT angiography.










Wonjun Yim is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Material Science at UCSD. He finished his undergraduate degree at Yonsei University, South Korea. After that, he did his masters at UC Berkeley where he studied material science engineering in depth.  Currently, he is working on polyphenol-based nanoparticle synthesis for biomedical applications. 
Email: woyim@eng.ucsd.edu 








Matthew Creyer 
is a PhD student in the Nanoengineering program at UC San Diego. He graduated with a B.S. in Materials Science & Engineering from the University of Wisconsin. As an undergraduate at Wisconsin, he researched the self-assembly of block copolymer thin films. For an REU at the University of New Mexico and Sandia National Labs, he studied the efficacy of theranostic agents to treat neurodegenerative diseases. Currently, he is working to develop diagnostic platforms using nanoparticle self-assembly approaches. 

























Raina Borum
 is a Nanoengineering Ph.D. student at UCSD. She received her B.S. in Nanoengineering with a minor in Mathematics at UCSD. Her past research focused on DNA Nanotechnology for drug delivery and controlled viral activity. She is investigating synthetic nucleic acid as an imaging probe for the low-limit and noninvasive detection of native nucleic acid cancer biomarkers.






Baiyan Qi
 a PhD student in Materials Science and Engineering program at UCSD. She received her B.S. degree in Physics from Nanjing University in China. Her previous research focused on stretchable wearable electronics. She is currently working on ultrasonic and photoacoustic healthcare imaging.








Master student

Zhuohong Wu
 is a M.S. student in the Department of Nanoengineering at UC San Diego. He received his B.Eng. with first-class honor in Applied Chemistry from Dongguan University of Technology (DGUT), China. At DGUT, his prior work mainly focused on the synthesis of functional nanomaterials and engineering simulation. In the Jokerst lab, he is currently working on the development of a multimodal platform based on the metal-phenolic network for biomedical applications.






Undergraduate Students

Jason Chang
 is an undergraduate student with a Human Biology, B.S. major at UCSD. His current focus is on studying contrast agents and photo-acoustic and ultrasound imaging.






Jason Tsujimoto
 is an undergraduate student with the BioEngineering Department at UCSD. He is currently focused on testing and developing a more portable and affordable photoacoustic tomography automation system.








Justin Yeung
  is an undergraduate in the Bioengineering department at UCSD. He is currently focused on studying nanomedicine and its application in wound dressing in the biomedical field.








Brain Donovan is a third year undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, and is additionally pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Probability & Statistics within the mathematics department at UCSD. He is currently working on utilizing silver nanoparticles in the utilization of colorimetric biosensors in order to detect a variety of diseases. Additionally, he works on a variety of projects involving statistics.