Faculty Directory
Neha Kamat

Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering


2145 Sheridan Road
Tech E353
Evanston, IL 60208-3109

847-467-2671Email Neha Kamat


Kamat Lab


Center of Synthetic Biology


Biomedical Engineering


PhD Program in Interdisciplinary Biological Sciences

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NASA Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard University and Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA

Ph.D. Bioengineering, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA

B.S. Bioengineering, Rice University, Houston, TX

Research Interests

Engineered Membranes, Artificial Cells, Membrane Biophysics, Polymersomes, Biomaterials

Our interests lie in constructing minimal systems, or artificial cells, as a tool to understand and recreate certain cellular behaviors. We are specifically interested in designing mechanically responsive systems that can optically or enzymatically report membrane stress in biological and polymeric environments. By using emerging engineering methods in material science and synthetic biology, we aim to construct macromolecular assemblies that can coordinate both membrane biophysical processes and RNA-regulated chemical processes in order to continuously sense and respond to designed stimuli for medicinal and technological applications.

Our research activities are focused into three areas: (1) designing active interfaces by incorporating membrane proteins into synthetic bilayer membranes (2) designing optical sensors that report membrane tension and stress and (3) engineering compartments that can engage encapsulated reactions based on environmental stimuli. These research areas all utilize self-assembled bilayers as a material scaffold. They advance our understanding of membrane biophysics as well as enable technologies for the design of adaptive and responsive biomaterials.

Selected Publications

    Boyd, M. A. and Kamat, N. P. Visualizing tension and growth in model membranes using optical dyes. 2018. Biophysical Journal. 

    Derek K. O’Flaherty*, Neha P. Kamat*, Fatima N. Mirza, Li Li, Noam Prywes, and Jack W. Szostak. 2018. Copying of mixed sequence RNA templates inside model protocells. JACS.

    Kamat, N. P., Tobe, S., Hill, I. T., and Szostak, J. W. 2015. Electrostatic localization of RNA to protocell membranes by cationic hydrophobic peptides. Angewandte Chemie.

    Kamat, N. P., Liao, Z.; Moses, L. E., Rawson, J., Therien, M. J., Dmochowski, I. J., and Hammer, D. A. 2011. Sensing membrane stress with near IR-emissive porphyrins. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.

    Kamat, N. P., Katz, J. S., and Hammer, D. A. 2011. Engineering polymersome protocells. Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters


1. Daniel A Hammer, Ivan Julian Dmochowski, Gregory Patrick Robbins, Masaya S Jimbo, Michael J Therien, and Neha P Kamat. Polymer Vesicles for Selective Electromagnetic Energy-Induced Delivery. US Patent App. 12/548, 801.