Faculty Directory
Jonathan Rivnay

Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering


2145 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208-3109

847-467-6622Email Jonathan Rivnay




Biomedical Engineering


Ph.D. Materials Science and Engineering, Stanford University, College of Engineering, Stanford, CA

M. Sc. Materials Science and Engineering, Stanford University, College of Engineering, Stanford, CA

B.S. Materials Science and Engineering, Cornell University, College of Engineering, Ithaca, NY

Research Interests

The Rivnay research group designs and develops new materials and devices to facilitate the seamless integration of sensing/actuation technologies with cells and tissue to enable improvements in diagnosis and therapy. Our research focuses on active materials such as conducting polymers due to their synthetic tunability, soft mechanical properties, demonstrated stability and compatibility with biological tissue, and their ability to take on a broad range of form factors from ultra-thin and flexible, to fibrous or scaffold-like. Importantly, these materials exhibit mixed ionic and electronic conduction, which aids in closing the signaling gap inherent to the bioelectronic interface. We utilize the unique properties of these soft, optoelectronically active materials to bridge the disparate worlds of biological systems and traditional microelectronic and optical tools.

The lab’s ongoing work makes use of electroactive polymers to realize efficient electrophysiological and biomarker-specific sensors, as well as electrical and chemical stimulators. These tools offer localized and less invasive bidirectional interfacing for in vivo applications, and are integral for high throughput, sensitive in vitro lab-on-chip platforms used for toxicology. The design of new organic bioelectronic materials and their devices promises to influence a broad range of applications beyond electrical/chemical sensing and stimulation, including on-demand actuation for surgical and soft robotics, as well as electroactive tissue regeneration.

Significant Recognition

  • Materials Research Society Postdoctoral Award, 2014
  • William E. and Diane M. Spicer Young Investigator Award, 2013
  • Melvin P. Klein Scientific Development Award, 2011
  • Materials Research Society Graduate Student Gold Award, 2011
  • Robert A. Huggins Award, 2010
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, 2009-2011
  • National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellow, 2006-2009

Significant Professional Service

  • Research Scientist, Electronic Materials and Devices Laboratory, Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), Palo Alto, CA
  • Marie Curie Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Department of Bioelectronics, Ecole des Mines de Saint-Etienne, Gardanne, France

Selected Publications

  • Jacob T. Friedlein, Jonathan Rivnay, David H. Dunlap, Iain McCulloch, Sean E. Shaheen, Robert R. McLeod, George G. Malliaras, “Influence of disorder on transfer characteristics of organic electrochemical transistors”, Applied Physics Letters, (2017)
  • David E. Schwartz, Jonathan Rivnay, Gregory L. Whiting, Ping Mei, Yong Zhang, Brent Krusor, Sivkheng Kor, George Daniel, Steve E. Ready, Janos Veres, Robert A. Street, “Flexible hybrid electronic circuits and systems”, IEEE Journal on Emerging and Selected Topics in Circuits and Systems, (2017)
  • Xenofon Strakosas, Miriam Huerta, Mary J. Donahue, Adel Hama, Anna Maria Pappa, Magali Ferro, Marc Ramuz, Jonathan Rivnay, Roisin M. Owens, “Catalytically enhanced organic transistors for in vitro toxicology monitoring through hydrogel entrapment of enzymes”, Journal of Applied Polymer Science, (2017)
  • Wonryung Lee, Dongmin Kim, Jonathan Rivnay, Naoji Matsuhisa, Thomas Lonjaret, Tomoyuki Yokota, Hiromu Yawo, Masaki Sekino, George G. Malliaras, Takao Someya, “Integration of Organic Electrochemical and Field-Effect Transistors for Ultraflexible, High Temporal Resolution Electrophysiology Arrays”, Advanced Materials, (2016)
  • Sahika Inal, George G. Malliaras, Jonathan Rivnay, “Optical study of electrochromic moving fronts for the investigation of ion transport in conducting polymers”, Journal of Materials Chemistry C, (2016)
  • Alexander Giovannitti, Christian B. Nielsen, Dan Tiberiu Sbircea, Sahika Inal, Mary Donahue, Muhammad R. Niazi, David A. Hanifi, Aram Amassian, George G. Malliaras, Jonathan Rivnay, Iain McCulloch, “N-type organic electrochemical transistors with stability in water”, Nature Communications, (2016)
  • Alexander Giovannitti, Dan Tiberiu Sbircea, Sahika Inal, Christian B. Nielsen, Enrico Bandiello, David A. Hanifi, Michele Sessolo, George G. Malliaras, Iain McCulloch, Jonathan Rivnay, “Controlling the mode of operation of organic transistors through side-chain engineering”, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, (2016)