The Lewinski group focuses on bridging the gulf between the rapidly increasing number of complex nanostructures and our understanding of the toxicity and biodistribution of these nanostructures by developing new techniques to detect, measure, control, and predict their pharmacokinetics.

We are thankful to the sponsors of our research over the years.

Research Themes:

Whether the public realizes it or not, today engineered nanomaterials are ubiquitous in consumer products, medicines, and industrial applications. Therefore human exposures are already occurring through manufacture, use and environmental release. The Lewinski Lab evaluates the potential human and environmental health effects of engineered nanomaterials in particle suspensions and in aerosols.

Bringing the lab to the field
Typically, environmental contaminants are collected and brought to the laboratory for biological testing versus exposing cells directly to environmental contaminants in the field. The Lewinski Lab is designing simple, portable, exposure devices for conducting in vitro aerosol toxicity experiments at on-site locations.

Advancing in vitro methods
In vitro studies typically involve monocultures of cells grown on flat substrates.  For less studied species like reef-building corals, stable monocultures may not exist. The Lewinski Lab is developing techniques to promote long-term culture of primary coral cells.  It is challenging to correlate findings made using simple in vitro models to observed effects in vivo. The Lewinski Lab is also exploring how three dimensional bioprinting can facilitate the creation of tissues that better recapitulate in vivo biological functions to serve as models for toxicological screening.

Literature in the field of nanotechnology is exponentially increasing with more and more engineered nanomaterials being created, characterized, and tested for performance and safety. The Lewinski Lab, in collaboration with the McInnes Lab (Computer Science), is engaged in research developing automated approaches to catalogue engineered nanomaterials and their associated physico-chemical properties, performance, exposure scenarios, and biological effects.