BWF BioInterfaces Rising Star Award

Sponsored by the BioInterfaces SIG (BioI) and Burroughs Wellcome Fund (BWF), this annual award recognizes outstanding BioInterfaces research by postdoc-level scientists. The BWF BioInterfaces Rising Star Award seeks to stimulate and highlight research that advances a biomaterials lens to cutting-edge research in protein and cell biology, and, conversely, research that translates progress in molecular and cell biology into innovative biomaterials.

Details of the award: The awardee receives (i) a certificate and a cash award ($1000 USD)(ii) travel and registration costs to the SFB annual meeting; and (iii) invited talk as keynote speaker for the BioInterfaces SIG session at the SFB annual meeting. The winner will be responsible for providing a 1-minute rapid fire research outlook video to be uploaded to Twitter.

Deadline for applications: January 10, 2022, at 5 PM ET.

Eligibility and application process:

1. Candidates must hold a PhD degree and the title of postdoctoral researcher at the time of application. Self-nominations are encouraged.

2. Eligible candidates need to submit the following two items before the application deadline: (i) a digital copy (PDF) of one BioI-relevant manuscript published in last 2 years as first author; (ii) 1-page (≤800 words) lay summary/essay on their key BioI-related contributions. These two items should be sent to the BioInterfaces SIG Chair as a single PDF file. The subject line of the email must have the following format: “Last name: BWF BioInterfaces Rising Star Award”. Additionally, (iii) the candidate should request two confidential letters of recommendation (one from PhD advisor; one from Postdoc advisor). These letters should be submitted directly to the BioInterfaces SIG Chair by the letter writers prior to the application deadline. Incomplete applications will not be considered by the review committee.

3. The awardee will be selected by a committee formed by a diverse group of BWF and SFB members. For transparency, the committee members for each award year will be published in the BioI website.

4. The awardee will be announced in late March prior to the annual SFB meeting.

Here are several exciting sessions and awards planned for the 2022 SFB Annual Meeting.

BioInterfaces SIG session: The junction between materials and biological systems is a critical and complex interface with the potential to control the function of macromolecules and dictate cell and tissue responses. Increasingly, cells and biomacromolecules are designable components of biomaterials, creating additional opportunities for innovative research at the interface of materials science and fundamental biology. This session serves as a forum for advances in approaches to modulate interfacial properties, investigations of structure-function and self-assembly at biointerfaces, and applications of interface-driven biomedicine. We also encourage contributions that advance a biomaterials lens to cutting-edge research in protein and cell biology, and research that translates progress in molecular and cell biology into innovative biomaterials.

The Dr. Rena Bizios Poster Award: honoring a founding and active member of the BIoInterfaces SIG, Dr. Rena Bizios, these awards recognize outstanding BioInterfaces research by graduate students who present at the annual SFB meeting. To be eligible, the candidates must be current graduate students or recent graduates (within 6 months of their most advanced degree). Candidates become eligible by either indicating the BIoInterfaces SIG as one of their choices for STAR awards and/or by presenting a poster in the BioInterfaces SIG session. First place ($300), second place ($150), and honorable mention ($50) winners will be announced at the end of the BioInterfaces SIG session at the 2022 SFB annual meeting.

In addition to our BioInterfaces SIG session, we are sponsoring and co-sponsoring sessions in the following cutting-edge areas:

1. Synthetic Scaffolds with Nature-Inspired Functional Groups: We invite abstracts on research that covers natural molecule incorporation into biomaterial scaffolds and characterization of their activity, safety, and functionality in vitro or in vivo.

2. Immune Cell Interfaces —Immunotherapies, Implants, and Immunobiology: Co-sponsored with the Immunoengineering SIG, this session aims to shed light on our emerging understanding of immune cell-cell and cell-biomaterial interfacial phenomena and methods to engineer these interactions in order to better diagnose and treat human diseases.

3. Design and Preclinical Testing of Biomaterials for Pathogen Inactivation: Co-sponsored with the Orthopedic Biomaterials SIG, this session will cover topics related to designing and characterizing biomaterials to control bacterial, viral, and/or fungal responses. Topics relating to the study of biocompatibility of pathogen-resistant surfaces and the selection and use of in vitro and preclinical models of infection in biomaterials evaluation are also invited.

To learn more about each of these opportunities, here is the full program.

The BioInterfaces Special Interest Group seeks to promote a better understanding of cell and protein interactions with biomaterial interfaces. To achieve these goals, the group organizes activities related to the evaluation of existing materials and the design of new materials to produce targeted responses by proteins and cells. Some of the topics related to proteins include: 1) relating surface chemistry to protein adsorption or specific binding and 2) studying the activation or inactivation of protein function at interfaces, including complement activation. Cell topics include: 1) the response of cells to differing chemistries and microstructures (roughness or porosity), 2) the evaluation of multiple cell and tissue response parameters (attachment, growth, migration, differentiation, inflammation, fibrosis), 3) the role of surface receptors in cell responses, and 4) all relevant cell types including bacteria. The group organizes workshops, symposia, and sessions at the annual meeting.

  • Are you looking for professional leadership opportunities?
  • Do you want to get involved in planning for future meetings?
  • Do you want to get more involved with the Society For Biomaterials?
  • Do you want to network with others in your field of expertise?
  • Then join us in the BioInterfaces SIG!!!



Chair: Felipe Garcia Quiroz, PhD
Assistant Professor
Emory University
1760 Haygood Dr NE
HSRB Room E184
Atlanta, GA 30322
t: (404) 251-5435

Vice-Chair: Erik Dreaden, PhD
Assistant Professor
Emory University
1760 Haygood Dr NE
HSRB Room E108
Atlanta, GA 30322
t: (404) 778-3033

Secretary/Treasurer: Jouha Min, PhD
Assistant Professor
University of Michigan
028-2010E NCRC
2800 Plymouth
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
t: (734) 647-4821

Program Chair: Nathan Gallant, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
University of South Florida
4202 E Fowler Ave
Tampa, FL 33620
t: (813) 974-5840

Web Contact: TBD

Student Contact: Sanju Vardhan, PhD candidate
University of Texas, Austin

Industry Representative: Lauren Austin, PhD
Discovery Pharmaceutical Sciences
770 Sumneytown Pike
West Point, PA 19486
t: (215) 652-0327

Biomaterials Forum Reporter: Stephanie Florczyk, PhD
Assistant Professor
University of Central Florida
12760 Pegasus Drive
Orlando, FL 32816-2455
t: (407) 823-2738

Past Chair: Stephanie Florczyk, PhD
Assistant Professor
University of Central Florida
12760 Pegasus Drive
Orlando, FL 32816-2455
t: (407) 823-2738

Our Interests

Click here for membership list (member log-in required - only available to members of this committee)


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