Professor Zhang’s academic journey has been marked by outstanding achievements and a passion for interdisciplinary science. He obtained his BS in Applied Chemistry from Nanjing University of Technology before pursuing his doctoral studies at Washington University in St. Louis under the guidance of Prof. Karen Wooley. His research focus on shell-crosslinked knedel-like nanoparticles and gene delivery earned him a Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2009. Following this, Professor Zhang honed his expertise as a postdoctoral fellow at Northwestern University, where he contributed to developing spherical nucleic acids as agents for gene regulation.
In 2012, Professor Zhang joined Northeastern University, where he currently serves as an Associate Professor of Chemistry. His research endeavors encompass the design and synthesis of unique polymer superstructures and nucleic acid-polymer conjugates and their use in nanomedicine. His work has earned him several important accolades; he was named a Pioneering Investigator by Polymer Chemistry and an Emerging Investigator by the Journal of Materials Chemistry B. In addition, he received the NSF CAREER award.
At the heart of Professor Zhang’s research lies a profound commitment to innovation. His lab’s interdisciplinary approach merges organic chemistry, colloidal syntheses, and bioconjugation techniques to create synthetic targets with remarkable precision, often at the nanoscale. His work promises transformative medical applications, including virus capsid mimics for preventive and therapeutic vaccines and nanoscopic drug carriers that can release therapeutic molecules with exquisite control.