Welcome to the Laboratory for Advanced Biopolymers and Nanomechanics of Proteins (LABNanoPro)!

Lab June 2020

Lab 2020. From left to right: Ionel, Smrithika, Luai, Sabita, Kim, Marina, Narayan, Binh, Annie and Joel.

Our lab is using cutting-edge single molecule force spectroscopy techniques to investigate the response of proteins to mechanical perturbations. Our research combines instrument development, protein engineering, covalent attachment chemistries, and computer programming to study the mechano-chemistry of proteins from single molecule to tissue organization. Located in the new Kenwood Interdisciplinary Research Center, our group has a brand new wet-lab section, fully equipped for protein engineering and surface chemistry, and measuring facilities, such as a fully operational custom-made magnetic tweezers and a microscope mounted tensile tester for biological tissues/materials, currently under development. For more information about our research of interests, please refer to our recent publications here.

May 1, 2022

Marina Slawinski earns Outstanding Presentation Award

Marina Slawinski earns Outstanding Presentation Award for her talk given at Undergraduate Research Symposium, entitled “Generating Pores within Protein-Based Biomaterials without Compromising Their Structural Integrity”. Congratulations Marina!

April 26, 2022

New protein technology to purify antibodies

Following participation at the First Look Forum, our innovation on a new method to purify antibodies using porous columns was featured by the www.bizjournals.com. We hope to license this technology soon.

January 18, 2022

Unfolding the mystery

Naomi Raicu is featured in a new movie by the Office of Undergraduate Research, as she works on her project on protein hydrogels… She also does a quick tour of the wet lab, while explaining how research has benefitted her. Hope her advice is heard by other students interested in getting involved in research. Congrats Naomi!

December 15, 2021

Erick graduation

Erick Sanchez graduates and moves to Harley Davison

Erick Sanchez, undergraduate student in our lab,  graduated with a Bachelor in Mechanical Engineering and joins Harley-Davison as a design engineer. Erick joined our lab as part of the STEM-Inspire Program for underrepresented minorities. He has participated in the design and manufacturing of one of our force-clamp instruments. Congrats Erick!


December 3, 2021

Science Bag is Back !

Sci Bag

Sci Bag Poster

Science Bag is back! Get your child interested in STEM! Our lab we’ll be doing the first event, in January ’22. Join us on January 7, 14, 21, 28 at 7 p.m or Sunday, January 16 at 2 p.m. at Physics building, Room 137, on the corner of E. Kenwood Blvd. and N. Cramer St. This event is open to the public and designed for children age 8 or older. I will be talking about how proteins are the magical workers inside our body and will do with future scientists from the audience several experiments to illustrate how proteins acquire their structure and how mechanical unfolding represents a unique process in nature.


July 7, 2021

Congratulations to Narayan for his successful PhD 


Congratulations to now Dr. Narayan Dahal for his successful defense! Narayan is the first Ph.D. student to graduate from
our lab. He developed new methods to study the mechanical response of proteins at single molecule level and successfully studied the binding of bacterial proteins to their ligands, how proteins operate during cellular mechano-transduction and
how muscle proteins respond to forces. We wish him all the
best in his future endeavors!

June 4, 2021

Good students get awards

Congratulations to our graduate students, Narayan Dahal for getting the Lichtman Award, which is given yearly to the best experimentalist student in the Physics Department, and to Sabita Sharma for receiving the Graduate Student Excellence Fellowship Award from the Graduate School. Also congrats to our undergraduate student, Naomi Raicu, for being offered an Quantum Undergraduate Internship by the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory over the summer!

March 15, 2021

Our paper was featured on the front cover of The FEBS Journal

Our review article on the roles of mechanical protein unfolding invo, entitled Does protein unfolding play a functional role in vivo?, was  featured on the cover of the March 15, 2021 issue of The FEBS Journal.





all lab news…