Lab Members

Derek Nelson
Doctoral Candidate

B.S. Chemical and Biological Engineering, University of New Mexico, 2019

Derek's current research involves the recombinant production of biomimetic proteins designed to facilitate the delivery of neural therapeutics that target neurodegenerative disease and traumatic brain injury pathology. Derek is also investigating the regenerative potential of a cardiovascular therapeutic for neural tissue injury applications as well as a novel mRNA therapeutic. Awards: NIA Alzheimer's Disease Clinical and Translational Research Training Fellowship | Health Innovations Incubator and Technology Center Fellowship by the Center for Disability Services 
Adelle Hamilton
Doctoral Student

B.S. Neuroscience, University of Pittsburgh, 2020

B.S. Psychology, University of Pittsburgh, 2020

Adelle's current research focuses on the synthesis of poly(pro-drugs) to allow for controlled and local drug delivery following central nervous system injury. Additionally, Adelle is characterizing the cellular response to novel poly(pro-drug) biomaterials, and investigating their neuroprotective and neuroregenerative potential following stimulated neural tissue injury. Awards: NIGMS Biomolecular Science and Engineering Training Fellowship | New York State Individual Predoctoral Fellowship in Spinal Cord Injury Research
Jack Devlin
Graduate Student

M.S. Biomedical Engineering, Fairfield University, 2023

B.S. Biomedical Engineering, Fairfield University, 2022

Payton O'Connor
Graduate Student

B.S. Biomedical Engineering, Boston University, 2023

Awards: NIGMS Biomolecular Science and Engineering Training Fellowship 
John Leman, Ph.D.
Senior Research Scientist

Ph.D. Inorganic Chemistry, Harvard University, 1993

B.S. Chemistry, University of Michigan

John's current research focuses on poly(pro-drug) synthesis and material development for long-term implantation and therapeutic release for use in spinal cord injury rehabilitation, in collaboration with the Palermo Lab (Materials Science and Engineering, RPI). 
Jay Saksena, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Researcher

Ph.D. Bioengineering, Tulane University, 2022

MSc. Bioengineering, University College Dublin

MSc. Material & Nano-Science, Université Pierre et Marie Curie - Sorbonne

BSc. Physics, St. Stephen's College

Jay's current research focuses on developing additively manufactured poly(pro-drug) implants for personalized therapies for spinal cord injuries and anti-inflammatory coatings for intracortical microelectrodes, in collaboration with the Palermo Lab (Materials Science and Engineering, RPI).

Group Alumni

  • Jessica Funnell, PhD
  • Devan Puhl, PhD | Research Scientist, Landmark Bio, Watertown, Massachusetts
  • Alexis Ziemba, PhD | Lecturer and Post-doctoral Scholar, Smith College
  • Anthony D'Amato, PhD | Post-doctoral Fellow, Cornell University
  • Christopher Johnson, PhD | Research Scientist, Quad Technologies, Woburn, Massachusetts
  • Nicholas Schaub, PhD | Senior Scientific Analyst, Axle Informatics
  • Jon Zuidema, PhD | Post-doctoral Research Scientist, University of California San Diego
  • Christopher McKay, PhD | Research Scientist, Gilead Sciences
  • Christopher Rivet, PhD | Physical Science/Physics Teacher, Windsor Southeast Supervisory Union
  • Hanbing Wang, PhD | Lecturer, Chemistry, SUNY Polytechnic Institute
  • Gregory Desmond, MS | Biotech Production Specialist II, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
  • Rebecca Pomrenke, MS | Product Analyst II, Boston Scientific, Marlborough, Massachusetts