Joel Henderson Collier

Joel Collier

Theodore Kennedy Professor of Biomedical Engineering

The Collier Lab designs biomaterials for a range of biomedical applications, with a focus on understanding and controlling adaptive immune responses.  Most materials investigated are created from molecular assemblies- proteins, peptides or bioconjugates that self-organize into useful structures such as nanofibers, gels, and particles. 

These biomaterials are being developed as novel treatments for infectious diseases, cancer, wound healing, and chronic inflammation.  Additionally, as these strategies are developed, basic insights into how materials engage the immune system are uncovered.

Appointments and Affiliations

  • Theodore Kennedy Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Professor of Biomedical Engineering
  • Associate Dean for Doctoral Education in the Pratt School of Engineering
  • Associate Professor in Integrative Immunobiology

Contact Information


  • Ph.D. Northwestern University, 2003

Research Interests

The design of biomaterials for a range of biomedical applications, with a focus on understanding and controlling adaptive immune responses. Most materials investigated are created from molecular assemblies- proteins, peptides or bioconjugates that self-organize into useful structures such as nanofibers, gels, and particles.

Awards, Honors, and Distinctions

  • Lois and John L. Imhoff Distinguished Teaching Award. Pratt School of Engineering. 2020
  • Fellow. American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). 2017
  • 2015 Biomaterials Science Lectureship. Royal Society of Chemistry Publishing. 2015
  • Distinguished Investigator, Junior. Biological Science Division, University of Chicago. 2012

Courses Taught

  • ME 391: Undergraduate Projects in Mechanical Engineering
  • EGR 790: Special Topics in Engineering
  • EGR 393: Research Projects in Engineering
  • EGR 391: Projects in Engineering
  • BME 792: Continuation of Graduate Independent Study
  • BME 791: Graduate Independent Study
  • BME 790: Advanced Topics for Graduate Students in Biomedical Engineering
  • BME 789: Internship in Biomedical Engineering
  • BME 729S: Teaching Seminar for Repeat Teaching Assistants
  • BME 728S: Teaching Seminar for New Teaching Assistants
  • BME 702S: BME Graduate Seminars
  • BME 701S: BME Graduate Seminars
  • BME 494: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 493: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 394: Projects in Biomedical Engineering (GE)
  • BME 221L: Biomaterials

In the News

Representative Publications

  • Wu, Y; Wen, H; Bernstein, ZJ; Hainline, KM; Blakney, TS; Congdon, KL; Snyder, DJ; Sampson, JH; Sanchez-Perez, L; Collier, JH, Multiepitope supramolecular peptide nanofibers eliciting coordinated humoral and cellular antitumor immune responses., Sci Adv, vol 8 no. 29 (2022) [10.1126/sciadv.abm7833] [abs].
  • Fries, CN; Chen, J-L; Dennis, ML; Votaw, NL; Eudailey, J; Watts, BE; Hainline, KM; Cain, DW; Barfield, R; Chan, C; Moody, MA; Haynes, BF; Saunders, KO; Permar, SR; Fouda, GG; Collier, JH, HIV envelope antigen valency on peptide nanofibers modulates antibody magnitude and binding breadth., Sci Rep, vol 11 no. 1 (2021) [10.1038/s41598-021-93702-x] [abs].
  • Votaw, NL; Collier, L; Curvino, EJ; Wu, Y; Fries, CN; Ojeda, MT; Collier, JH, Randomized peptide assemblies for enhancing immune responses to nanomaterials., Biomaterials, vol 273 (2021) [10.1016/j.biomaterials.2021.120825] [abs].
  • Hainline, KM; Shores, LS; Votaw, NL; Bernstein, ZJ; Kelly, SH; Fries, CN; Madhira, MS; Gilroy, CA; Chilkoti, A; Collier, JH, Modular complement assemblies for mitigating inflammatory conditions., Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol 118 no. 15 (2021) [10.1073/pnas.2018627118] [abs].
  • Fries, CN; Curvino, EJ; Chen, J-L; Permar, SR; Fouda, GG; Collier, JH, Advances in nanomaterial vaccine strategies to address infectious diseases impacting global health., Nat Nanotechnol, vol 16 no. 4 (2021), pp. 1-14 [10.1038/s41565-020-0739-9] [abs].
  • Kelly, SH; Opolot, EE; Wu, Y; Cossette, B; Varadhan, AK; Collier, JH, Tabletized Supramolecular Assemblies for Sublingual Peptide Immunization., Advanced healthcare materials, vol 10 no. 6 (2021) [10.1002/adhm.202001614] [abs].
  • Fries, CN; Wu, Y; Kelly, SH; Wolf, M; Votaw, NL; Zauscher, S; Collier, JH, Controlled Lengthwise Assembly of Helical Peptide Nanofibers to Modulate CD8+ T-Cell Responses., Advanced materials (Deerfield Beach, Fla.), vol 32 no. 39 (2020) [10.1002/adma.202003310] [abs].
  • Wu, Y; Kelly, SH; Sanchez-Perez, L; Sampson, JH; Collier, JH, Comparative study of α-helical and β-sheet self-assembled peptide nanofiber vaccine platforms: influence of integrated T-cell epitopes., Biomater Sci, vol 8 no. 12 (2020), pp. 3522-3535 [10.1039/d0bm00521e] [abs].
  • Kelly, SH; Wu, Y; Varadhan, AK; Curvino, EJ; Chong, AS; Collier, JH, Enabling sublingual peptide immunization with molecular self-assemblies., Biomaterials, vol 241 (2020) [10.1016/j.biomaterials.2020.119903] [abs].
  • Shores, LS; Kelly, SH; Hainline, KM; Suwanpradid, J; MacLeod, AS; Collier, JH, Multifactorial Design of a Supramolecular Peptide Anti-IL-17 Vaccine Toward the Treatment of Psoriasis., Front Immunol, vol 11 (2020) [10.3389/fimmu.2020.01855] [abs].
  • Nelson, C; Wu, Y; Gemberling, M; Oliver, M; Bohning, JD; Robinson-Hamm, JN; Bulaklak, K; Rivera, RMC; Collier, JH; Asokan, A; Gersbach, CA, Long-Term Evaluation of AAV-CRISPR Genome Editing for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, MOLECULAR THERAPY, vol 27 no. 4 (2019), pp. 46-47 [abs].
  • Si, Y; Wen, Y; Kelly, SH; Chong, AS; Collier, JH, Intranasal delivery of adjuvant-free peptide nanofibers elicits resident CD8+ T cell responses., Journal of controlled release : official journal of the Controlled Release Society, vol 282 (2018), pp. 120-130 [10.1016/j.jconrel.2018.04.031] [abs].
  • Hainline, KM; Fries, CN; Collier, JH, Progress Toward the Clinical Translation of Bioinspired Peptide and Protein Assemblies., Advanced healthcare materials, vol 7 no. 5 (2018) [10.1002/adhm.201700930] [abs].
  • Solano, CM; Wen, Y; Han, H; Collier, JH, Practical Considerations in the Design and Use of Immunologically Active Fibrillar Peptide Assemblies., Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.), vol 1777 (2018), pp. 233-248 [10.1007/978-1-4939-7811-3_14] [abs].
  • Si, Y; Wen, Y; Chen, J; Pompano, RR; Han, H; Collier, J; Chong, AS, MyD88 in antigen-presenting cells is not required for CD4+ T-cell responses during peptide nanofiber vaccination., MedChemComm, vol 9 no. 1 (2018), pp. 138-148 [10.1039/c7md00367f] [abs].
  • Wu, Y; Norberg, PK; Reap, EA; Congdon, KL; Fries, CN; Kelly, SH; Sampson, JH; Conticello, VP; Collier, JH, A Supramolecular Vaccine Platform Based on α-Helical Peptide Nanofibers., ACS Biomater Sci Eng, vol 3 no. 12 (2017), pp. 3128-3132 [10.1021/acsbiomaterials.7b00561] [abs].
  • Mora-Solano, C; Wen, Y; Han, H; Chen, J; Chong, AS; Miller, ML; Pompano, RR; Collier, JH, Active immunotherapy for TNF-mediated inflammation using self-assembled peptide nanofibers., Biomaterials, vol 149 (2017), pp. 1-11 [10.1016/j.biomaterials.2017.09.031] [abs].
  • Kelly, SH; Shores, LS; Votaw, NL; Collier, JH, Biomaterial strategies for generating therapeutic immune responses., Advanced drug delivery reviews, vol 114 (2017), pp. 3-18 [10.1016/j.addr.2017.04.009] [abs].
  • Wu, Y; Collier, JH, α-Helical coiled-coil peptide materials for biomedical applications., Wiley interdisciplinary reviews. Nanomedicine and nanobiotechnology, vol 9 no. 2 (2017) [10.1002/wnan.1424] [abs].
  • Wen, Y; Waltman, A; Han, H; Collier, JH, Switching the Immunogenicity of Peptide Assemblies Using Surface Properties., ACS nano, vol 10 no. 10 (2016), pp. 9274-9286 [10.1021/acsnano.6b03409] [abs].
  • Vigneswaran, Y; Han, H; De Loera, R; Wen, Y; Zhang, X; Sun, T; Mora-Solano, C; Collier, JH, This paper is the winner of an SFB Award in the Hospital Intern, Residency category: Peptide biomaterials raising adaptive immune responses in wound healing contexts., Journal of biomedical materials research. Part A, vol 104 no. 8 (2016), pp. 1853-1862 [10.1002/jbm.a.35767] [abs].
  • Sun, T; Han, H; Hudalla, GA; Wen, Y; Pompano, RR; Collier, JH, Thermal stability of self-assembled peptide vaccine materials., Acta biomaterialia, vol 30 (2016), pp. 62-71 [10.1016/j.actbio.2015.11.019] [abs].
  • Wen, Y; Collier, JH, Supramolecular peptide vaccines: tuning adaptive immunity., Current opinion in immunology, vol 35 (2015), pp. 73-79 [10.1016/j.coi.2015.06.007] [abs].
  • Pompano, RR; Chen, J; Verbus, EA; Han, H; Fridman, A; McNeely, T; Collier, JH; Chong, AS, Titrating T-cell epitopes within self-assembled vaccines optimizes CD4+ helper T cell and antibody outputs., Advanced healthcare materials, vol 3 no. 11 (2014), pp. 1898-1908 [10.1002/adhm.201400137] [abs].
  • Hudalla, GA; Sun, T; Gasiorowski, JZ; Han, H; Tian, YF; Chong, AS; Collier, JH, Gradated assembly of multiple proteins into supramolecular nanomaterials., Nature materials, vol 13 no. 8 (2014), pp. 829-836 [10.1038/nmat3998] [abs].
  • Mora-Solano, C; Collier, JH, Engaging adaptive immunity with biomaterials., Journal of materials chemistry. B, vol 2 no. 17 (2014), pp. 2409-2421 [10.1039/c3tb21549k] [abs].
  • Chen, J; Pompano, RR; Santiago, FW; Maillat, L; Sciammas, R; Sun, T; Han, H; Topham, DJ; Chong, AS; Collier, JH, The use of self-adjuvanting nanofiber vaccines to elicit high-affinity B cell responses to peptide antigens without inflammation., Biomaterials, vol 34 no. 34 (2013), pp. 8776-8785 [10.1016/j.biomaterials.2013.07.063] [abs].
  • Tian, YF; Hudalla, GA; Han, H; Collier, JH, Controllably degradable β-sheet nanofibers and gels from self-assembling depsipeptides., Biomaterials science, vol 1 no. 10 (2013) [10.1039/c3bm60161g] [abs].
  • Hudalla, GA; Modica, JA; Tian, YF; Rudra, JS; Chong, AS; Sun, T; Mrksich, M; Collier, JH, A self-adjuvanting supramolecular vaccine carrying a folded protein antigen., Advanced healthcare materials, vol 2 no. 8 (2013), pp. 1114-1119 [10.1002/adhm.201200435] [abs].
  • Jung, JP; Moyano, JV; Collier, JH, Multifactorial optimization of endothelial cell growth using modular synthetic extracellular matrices., Integrative biology : quantitative biosciences from nano to macro, vol 3 no. 3 (2011), pp. 185-196 [10.1039/c0ib00112k] [abs].
  • Rudra, JS; Tian, YF; Jung, JP; Collier, JH, A self-assembling peptide acting as an immune adjuvant., Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol 107 no. 2 (2010), pp. 622-627 [10.1073/pnas.0912124107] [abs].