Perry Research Group

Welcome to the Perry Lab

Perry Research Group

Research in the Perry laboratory utilizes self-assembly, molecular design, and microfluidic technologies to generate biomimetic microenvironments to study and enable the implementation of biomolecules to address real-world challenges. Individually, microfluidics represents an enabling technology for high throughput analyses such as the time-resolved structural analysis of enzyme dynamics, while control over molecular interactions in self-assembling polyelectrolyte systems can be used to examine the interplay between biomolecules and the environment. Together, these capabilities can be coupled to generate artificial organelles for use in applications ranging from biochemistry to bioenergetics, biocatalysis, and biomedicine. Furthermore, this work has tremendous pedagogical potential to inspire students to work at the intersection of chemistry, biology, and engineering.

News and Announcements

October 13th, 2020
Whitney Blocher McTigue

Congratulations to Whitney Blocher McTigue on the publication of her new article on the encapsulation and stabilization of viruses in coacervates, done in collaboration with Prof. Caryn Heldt's lab at Michigan Tech!

"Stabilization of Viruses: A Stepping Stone toward Thermostable Vaccines," X. Mi, W.C. Blocher McTigue, P.U. Joshi, M.K. Bunker, C.L. Heldt, S.L. Perry, Biomaterials Science, (2020), (in press). [PDF]

October 6th, 2020
Shuo Sui

Congratulations to Shuo Sui on the acceptance of his patent on graphene microfluidics!

"Microfluidic Devices and Methods of Manufacture and Use Thereof," S. Sui, Y. Wang, C. Dimitrakopoulos, S.L. Perry, US Patent No. 10,792,657, Oct. 6, 2020.

September 24th, 2020
Zoey Meng

Congratulations to Zoey Meng on the publishing of her second patent!

"Ultra-stable Printing and Coatings using Aqueous Complex Coacervates, and Compositions and Methods Thereof," X. Meng, S.L. Perry, J.D. Schiffman, US Patent No. 10,767,060 B2, Sept. 8, 2020. [PDF]

September 14th, 2019
Alistaire Rauch

Congratulations to Alistaire Rauch on being awarded a Commonwealth Honors College Fellowship for Fall 2020!

September 14th, 2019
Hansen Tjo

Congratulations to Hansen Tjo on being awarded a second Commonwealth Honors College Research Grant to support his thesis research!

September 14th, 2019
Josh McGee

Congratulations to Josh McGee on being awarded a Commonwealth Honors College Research Grant to support his thesis research!

September 10th, 2020
Yalin Liu

Yalin Liu's new article on the effect of polymer backbone hydrophobicity on the phase behavior and rheology of complex coacervates has been published!

"Effect of Polymer Chemistry on the Linear Viscoelasticity of Polyelectrolyte Complexes," Y. Liu, C.F. Santa Chalarca, R.N. Carmean, R.A. Olson, J. Madinya, B.S. Sumerlin, C.E. Sing, T. Emrick, S.L. Perry, Macromolecules, (2020), 53(18), 7851-7864. [PDF]

August 30th, 2020
Kat Nilov

Welcome to Kat Nilov, who is joining us to work on a collaborative project with Prof. Laura Bradley to develop educational content highlighting diverse individuals in Chemical Engineering!

August 26th, 2020
Rainbow Plots

Congratulations to Whitney Blocher McTigue, Elizabeth Voke, and Li-Wei Chang on the publication of their new paper on coacervate kinetics!

"The Benefit of Poor Mixing: Kinetics of Coacervation," W.C. Blocher McTigue, E. Voke, L.W. Chang, S.L. Perry, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, (2020) 22, 20643-20657. [PDF]

August 21st, 2020
Zoey Meng

Congratulations to Zoey Meng on accepting a postdoctoral position with Prof. Rachel Segalman at the University of California at Santa Barbara!

August 20th, 2020
Sarthak Saha

Congratulations to Sarthak Saha on winning a departmental PPG Fellowship to support the next two semesters of his research!

August 19th, 2020
Whitney Blocher McTigue

Congratulations to Whitney Blocher McTigue on accepting a postdoctoral position with Prof. Charles Sing at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign!

August 18th, 2020
Systems Chemistry

Check out the meeting report that Prof. Perry helped to write on the Virtual Symposium on Systems Chemistry!

"Complexity Emerges from Chemistry," H.S. Azevedo, S.L. Perry, P.A. Korevaar, D. Das, Nature Chemistry, 2020, 12, 793-794, (invited meeting report). [PDF]

May 5th, 2020
Whitney Blocher McTigue

Whitney Blocher McTigue's new methods article on coacervation with proteins has just come out!

"Incorporation of Proteins into Complex Coacervates," W.C. Blocher McTigue, S.L. Perry, Methods in Enzymology, (2020) - in press. [PDF]

July 27th, 2020
Shuo Sui

Congratulations to Shuo Sui on accepting a postdoctoral position with Prof. Lois Pollack's lab at Cornell!

July 21st, 2020
Prof. Sarah Perry

Prof. Perry was officially granted tenure and promoted to the rank of Associate Professor!

July 7th, 2020
Yalin Liu

Congratulations to Yalin Liu on accepting a position as with the leadership rotational program at Henkel!

June 5th, 2020
Hansen Tjo

Hansen Tjo gave a great soundbite on his work on polymer-surfactant complex coacervates at the 83rd New England Complex Fluids Meeting!

May 22nd, 2020
Elizabeth McDermott

Congratulations to Elizabeth McDermott, who will be joining the rotation program at Abbvie in Worcester, MA!

May 18th, 2020
Prof. Sarah Perry

Prof. Perry gave a talk today on Designing Phase Separation in Complex Systems as part of the Virtual Symposium on Systems Chemistry to an audience of more than 500 people. Such an amazing opportunity!

May 5th, 2020
Whitney Blocher McTigue

Check out Whitney Blocher McTigue's new review article on protein encapsulation and stabilization!

"Protein Encapsulation using Complex Coacervates: What Nature has to Teach Us," W.C. Blocher McTigue, S.L. Perry, Small, (2020), 16(27), 1907671. [PDF]

April 30th, 2020
Devin Rafferty

Congratulations to Devin Rafferty, who will be joining the rotation program at Bristol-Myers Squibb after graduation!

April 10th, 2020
Prof. Sarah Perry

Check out the news highlight on Prof. Perry having received an NSF CAREER Award to stabilize proteins and increase access to vaccines. It was even picked up by the Republican Newspaper in Springfield, MA!

April 10th, 2020
Elizabeth Voke

Check out the news story highlighting Elizabeth Voke as a UMass Amherst Rising Researcher!

April 10th, 2020
Advance Logo

Prof. Perry is part of a STEM Women’s Interdisciplinary Group who were just awarded an ADVANCE Mutual Mentoring Grant to support research collaboration through plans to help develop “high risk-high reward” research proposals by bringing together disparate scientific groups with overlapping research interests in the area of “Particles and Polymers in Biofilms.”

March 31st, 2020
Elizabeth Voke

Congratulations to Elizabeth Voke on having received honorable mention on her NSF Graduate Research Fellowship application!

March 31st, 2020
Elizabeth Voke

Congratulations to Elizabeth Voke on having been named a UMass Amherst Rising Researcher!

March 31st, 2020
Greg Donovan

Next fall, Greg Donovan will be joining the PhD program in Chemical Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder!

March 31st, 2020
Josh McGee

This summer, Josh McGee will be participating in an internship program at Merck!

March 31st, 2020
Elizabeth Voke

Next fall, Elizabeth Voke will be joining the PhD program in Chemical Engineering at the University of California Berkeley!

March 18th, 2020
Whitney's PhD Defense

Congratulations to Dr. Whitney Blocher McTigue on successfully defending her PhD dissertation on Encapsulation and Stabilization of Biomolecules! Dr. Blocher McTigue is the fourth PhD student to graduate from the Perry Lab!

March 13th, 2020
Li-Wei Chang

Best wishes to Dr. Li-Wei Chang as he moves on to his new position as a postdoctoral researcher in the lab of Prof. Daeyeon Lee at the University of Pennsylvania.

March 13th, 2020
Shuo's PhD Defense

Congratulations to Dr. Shuo Sui on successfully defending his PhD dissertation on Microfluidic Platforms for Advanced Crystallography! Dr. Sui is the third PhD student to graduate from the Perry Lab!

March 11th, 2020
Prof. Sarah Perry

Prof. Perry is one of five engineering faculty members to have been awarded an NSF CAREER Award!!!

March 9th, 2020
Xianci Zeng

Welcome to Xianci Zeng, who has joined our group as a new PhD student to study sequence effects in complex coacervation with a goal of encapsulating and stabilizing biologic materials!

March 8th, 2020
NIH Logo

Prof. Caryn Heldt and I just heard that our joint R21 NIH grant on Dense Phase Polyelectrolytes to Thermally Stabilize Viral Vaccines was funded!

March 5th, 2020
Sarah Perry

Check out the fantastic new review by Prof. Perry and Prof. Charles Sing wrote on the science of complex coacervation!

"Recent Progress in the Science of Complex Coacervation," C.E. Sing, S.L. Perry, Soft Matter, (2020), 16, 2885-2914. [PDF]

March 3rd, 2020
Sarah Perry

Check out the new review by Prof. Perry and Prof. Julian McClements wrote on the encapsulation and delivery of bioactive proteins and peptides!

"Recent Advances in Encapsulation, Protection, and Oral Delivery of Bioactive Proteins and Peptides using Colloidal Systems," S.L. Perry, D.J. McClements, Molecules, (2020), 25(5), 1161. [PDF]

February 14th, 2020
Yalin's PhD Defense

Congratulations to Dr. Yalin Liu on successfully defending her PhD dissertation on Designing Material Properties in Polyelectrolyte Complexes! Dr. Liu is the second PhD student to graduate from the Perry Lab!

February 13th, 2020
Li-Wei's PhD Defense

Congratulations to Dr. Li-Wei Chang on successfully defending his PhD dissertation on Sequence Control in Complex Coacervates! Dr. Chang is the first PhD student to graduate from the Perry Lab!

February 10th, 2020
NIH Logo

Prof. Perry just found out that her NSF CAREER Award on Nature-Inspired Strategies for Protein Stabilization was funded!

February 7th, 2020
Sarthak Saha

Congratulations to Sarthak Saha on being named a BioXFEL Scholar!

January 31th, 2020
Vanda Liadinskaia

Best wishes to Dr. Vanda Liadinskaia as she transitions to a new position at the University of Twente! We will all miss you!

January 27th, 2020
Sarah Perry

Check out the new viewpoint article that Prof. Perry wrote with our collaborator Prof. Charles Sing on the future of sequence controlled polymers!

"100th Anniversary of Macromolecular Science Viewpoint: Opportunities in the Physics of Sequence-Defined Polymers," S.L. Perry, C.E. Sing, ACS Macro Letters, (2020), 9, 216-225. [PDF]

January 27th, 2020
Sarthak Saha

Sarthak Saha gave an excellent talk and poster at the BioXFEL Conference on the topic of X-ray Compatible Microfluidics for Advanced Protein Crystallography!

January 10th, 2020
Zoey Meng

Congratulations to Zoey Meng on her contributions to a newly published collaborative paper with the Thayumanavan lab!

"Programmable Chemical Switch based on Triggerable Michael Acceptors," J. Zhuang, B. Zhao, X. Meng, J.D. Schiffman, S.L. Perry, R. Vachet, S. Thayumanavan, Chemical Science, (2020), 11, 2103-2111.[PDF]

See more news from 2019.