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Two University of Southern California Innovators Recognized by Technology Review's Prestigious TR35 Listing of the World's Top Young Innovators for 2009
Date:8/18/2009

Ellis Meng

Ellis Meng's work leverages micro- and nano-technologies to develop drug delivery platforms that achieve three main goals: benchtop tools compatible with both cells and tissues for rapid scientific and drug discovery, implants for targeted release of therapeutics in disease models, and translational medical device technologies for the treatment of human conditions.

The ability to deliver or extract minuscule volumes of fluid with spatiotemporal precision is an extremely powerful technology that enables advanced biomedical therapies. These technologies advance beyond conventional needles for drug injection or Petri-dish based biomedical research.

This approach may lead to effective treatments of central nervous system injuries, epilepsy, cancer, and other diseases that result in devastating lifelong physical disabilities in millions of Americans. Many of these conditions are presently incurable and drug therapy is the preferred treatment method. Meng's research team is engaged in several clinical collaborations to address these conditions, and is even looking at ways to better understand drug addiction. Next generation closed-loop drug delivery platforms that include integrated sensors that can detect when drug is needed, trigger the delivery, and continually monitor the effectiveness of the treatment are also being developed.

In the past few years, through numerous referenced and peer-reviewed conference publications, she has become a national leader in this field. She is a recipient of the National Science Foundation Early Career Award to manipulate fluids as a medium for interfacing to cells and tissues. She recently received the Wallace H. Coulter Early Career Translational Research Award to develop an implantable drug delivery pump for target delivery in the treatment of incurable ocular disease. Meng is the co-author of three awarded patents, four provisional pat
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