Young Scientist Group


The main objective of the Young Scientist Group within the Society For Biomaterials (SFB) is to facilitate and promote the entry, development, and full participation of young scientists within SFB and the broader biomaterials community. Undergraduate students, graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, young industrial professionals, young faculty, and other young scientists are included in SFB’s Young Scientist Group.

Click here to review the YSG Policies which serve as a guide for governance.





Claudia Loebel, MD, PhD
Position: Chair (2021-2022)
Twitter: @ClaudiaLoebel

Claudia Loebel is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Materials Science & Engineering at the University of Michigan. She obtained her MD at the Martin-Luther University Halle-Wittenberg in Germany and PhD at ETH Zurich in Switzerland. Prior to her faculty appointment at UMich, she completed her postdoctoral training at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research interests are on the development of biomaterial platforms to characterize and uncover the role of nascent microenvironments on cell fate with the ultimate goal of addressing specific problems related to tissue repair and therapeutic treatment.


Jason Guo, PhD
Position: Vice-Chair (2021-2022), Chair (2022-2023)

Jason Guo is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University. He completed his BS in Biomedical Engineering at Northwestern University and his PhD in Bioengineering at Rice University. As a postdoctoral fellow, he develops biomaterial models to study the fundamental mechanisms of wound healing and pulmonary fibrosis.

Brian Aguado, PhD
Position: Past Chair 
Twitter: @BrianAguado  

Brian Aguado is currently an NIH and Burroughs Wellcome Fund Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Colorado Boulder. He received his BS in Biomechanical Engineering from Stanford University and his MS and PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Northwestern University. His research is focused on developing precision biomaterials for personalized medicine and seeks to develop personalized models of fibrosis and cancer metastasis.  


Marissa Wechsler, PhD
Position: Programming Chair (2021-2022)

Marissa Wechsler is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering and Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). She received her BS from UTSA and MSE and PhD from the University of Texas at Austin, all in biomedical engineering. Prior to joining UTSA as a faculty member, she completed postdoctoral research training at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her research focuses on the use of engineered polymeric systems for biomarker detection, drug delivery, and the design of complex biological microenvironments with applications in nanotechnology, biosensing, and tissue engineering.


Tochukwu ‘Tochi’ Ozulumba, PhD
Position: Communications Chair (2021-2022)

Tochukwu ‘Tochi’ Ozulumba is currently a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the University of Virginia. She obtained her BSc and MSc degrees in Biochemistry at the University of Nigeria and completed a PhD in Biomaterials Science at the University of Brighton, United Kingdom. Her research is focused on controlling immune cell interactions with biomaterials in a bioengineered model of a human lymph node.


Marian Ackun-Farmmer, PhD
Position: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Chair (2021-2022)
Twitter: @ackun_amatata

Marian Ackun-Farmmer is currently a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Maryland in the Jewell lab. She received her BS in Biomedical Engineering from George Washington University and her MS and PhD in Biomedical Engineering from University of Rochester in the Benoit lab. Her current research is focused on developing next-generation self-assembly systems to treat autoimmunity.


Bhavya Singhi, PhD
Position: Industry Chair (2021-2022)

Bhavya Singhi is working as a Research Engineer at Zeus Industrial Products in South Carolina. She completed her B.Tech in Fibers and Textile Processing from Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai (India), and her MS in Textile Chemistry and PhD in Fibers and Polymer Science from NC State University. Her graduate research was focused on producing biopolymer fibers for drug delivery applications. Currently, her work involves developing new polymeric products and processes for medical device applications.


Deanna Bousalis
Student Representative

Deanna Bousalis is currently a PhD candidate at the University of Florida. She received her BS in Chemical Engineering from Florida State University (FSU).  Her research is focused on cardiac tissue mimics for analysis of congenital heart impairments (in collaboration with Dr. Hideko Kasahara, UF).








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