Gabriel P. Lopez

Gabriel P. Lopez

Adjunct Professor of Biomedical Engineering

My primary professional interests lie in research and education in biomaterials science and engineering, bioanalytical chemistry and biointerfacial phenomena. These areas are generally populated by researchers with formal training in biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, chemistry, biology and physics, and as such are inherently interdisciplinary and highly collaborative in nature. Our research group has worked to address problems across a number of fields. Highlights include:

Bioinspired and Biomimetic Materials. We have developed several intelligent materials systems that are capable of biospecific molecular recognition and transduction of molecular signals to macroscopically observable responses. These materials are finding application in areas such as diagnostics, environmental monitoring and drug discovery. We have also developed biomimetic membrane materials that have functional hallmarks of biological membranes but that are robust enough to incorporate into manufacturable devices.

Biosensing and Diagnostic Systems. We have developed methods and instrumentation suited for making measurements on arrays of biospecific and cross-reactive sensors. Systems have spanned refractometric, fluorometric, electrochemical and colorimetric transduction methods. This comprehensive suite of methodologies brings substantial power to designing biosensing systems for particular applications, and to benchmarking the performance of new methodologies.

Control of Microbial Interactions with Materials. We were among the first to establish principles for formation of fouling resistant surfaces and stimuli-responsive surfaces that could be used for rapid and efficient release of microbial biofilms.

Analytical Bioseparations. We have demonstrated facile methods for the manufacture of integrated nanofluidic systems that allow controllable sample introduction and highly efficient separation using new methodologies such as nanoelectroosmosis.

Each of these general areas of research remains ripe for new discoveries and innovations. The research environment offered by Duke University and its surroundings provides fertile grounds for continued development in each of these areas, as well as their direct application to specific biological, biotechnological and medical problems.

Appointments and Affiliations

  • Adjunct Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Adjunct Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science

Contact Information


  • Ph.D. University of Washington, 1993

Awards, Honors, and Distinctions

  • Fellows. American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. 2011

Courses Taught

  • BME 307: Transport Phenomena in Biological Systems (AC or GE, BB)
  • BME 394: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 493: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 494: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 791: Graduate Independent Study
  • CEE 307: Transport Phenomena in Biological Systems (AC or GE, BB)
  • ME 494: Engineering Undergraduate Fellows Projects
  • PHYSICS 493: Research Independent Study

In the News

Representative Publications

  • Simon, JR; Carroll, NJ; Rubinstein, M; Chilkoti, A; López, GP, Programming molecular self-assembly of intrinsically disordered proteins containing sequences of low complexity., Nature Chemistry, vol 9 no. 6 (2017), pp. 509-515 [10.1038/nchem.2715] [abs].
  • Fu, L; Bian, C; Shields, CW; Cruz, DF; López, GP; Charbonneau, P, Assembly of hard spheres in a cylinder: a computational and experimental study., Soft Matter, vol 13 no. 18 (2017), pp. 3296-3306 [10.1039/c7sm00316a] [abs].
  • Shields, CW; Ohiri, KA; Szott, LM; López, GP, Translating microfluidics: Cell separation technologies and their barriers to commercialization., Cytometry, vol 92 no. 2 (2017), pp. 115-125 [10.1002/cyto.b.21388] [abs].
  • Gonzalez, MA; Simon, JR; Ghoorchian, A; Scholl, Z; Lin, S; Rubinstein, M; Marszalek, P; Chilkoti, A; López, GP; Zhao, X, Strong, Tough, Stretchable, and Self-Adhesive Hydrogels from Intrinsically Unstructured Proteins., Advanced Materials, vol 29 no. 10 (2017) [10.1002/adma.201604743] [abs].
  • Shivapooja, P; Cao, C; Orihuela, B; Levering, V; Zhao, X; Rittschof, D; López, GP, Incorporation of silicone oil into elastomers enhances barnacle detachment by active surface strain., Biofouling, vol 32 no. 9 (2016), pp. 1017-1028 [10.1080/08927014.2016.1209186] [abs].