John X.J. Zhang

Professor of Engineering



Dr. Zhang received his PhD in electrical engineering from Stanford University, and was a research scientist in systems biology at MIT before joining the faculty at UT Austin, where he was tenured in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. His key contribution is in developing miniature medical systems to improve global health, through innovations in bio-inspired nanomaterials, lab-on-chip design, and advanced nanofabrication technologies for probing complex biological networks critical to human development and diseases such as cancer; and multi-scale modeling of the underlining fundamental force, flow, and energy processes. He received the Wallace Coulter Foundation Early Career Award for developing handheld microphotonic imaging scanners and microsystems for early oral cancer detection; NSF CAREER award for the invention of plasmonic scanning probes design for controlled perturbation and imaging at sub-cellular level; and DARPA Young Faculty Award for patterning plasmonic surface on MEMS for biomarker sensing applications. He has published over 120 peer reviewed papers and proceedings, presented over 45 invited seminars worldwide, and filed over 50 US and international patents. His research findings were licensed to two companies: CardioSpectra (acquired by Volcano, Nasdaq: VOLC), and NanoLite Systems for developing successful products designed to diagnose cancer through blood screening, tissue imaging and cell transformations at the point-of-care.
He is a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE), an alumnus of NAE Frontiers of Engineering programs, an Associate Editor for Biomedical Microdevices, IEEE/ASME Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems, and has published a textbook for undergraduates entitled Molecular Sensors and Nanodevices: Principles, Designs and Applications in Biomedical Engineering.


Research Interests

Miniature imaging and biosensing systems; bio-inspired nanomaterials; lab-on-chip design; advanced nanofabrication technologies; multi-scale modeling of fundamental force, flow, and energy processes in biological interactions



Selected Publications


Selected Patents


Professional Activities


In Dartmouth Engineer Magazine


Seminar: Engineering Biology and Medicine at Small Scales: From Cell Manipulation, Molecular Screening to Early Cancer Detection

Open Positions

Research Associate Positions

The Laboratory for Micro-Nano Scale Bio-manipulation, Imaging and Sensing at Thayer School warmly invites applications for 2 Research Associate positions. We are looking for rising scholars with great research potential who are desirous of independent academic or industrial R&D careers. Learn more.

PhD Student Positions

Contact to learn about open Ph.D. and postdoctoral positions in his lab.