Integrated Sensors Systems for Clinical Diagnostics and Biodefense
Professor Cristina Davis,
Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering,
University of California, Davis
There is an urgent need for sensors that can rapidly, accurately, and specifically detect extremely small concentrations of chemical and biological materials. Such technologies can make an impact on everything from public health to national defense. Infectious diseases are the leading cause of mortality globally, disproportionately ravaging the developing world, and new emerging variations are increasingly impacting developed nations. Along with researchers in industry, my group is developing a new sensor system suitable for rapid diagnosis of various pulmonary diseases. Similarly, we are also applying variations on this technology for the early detection of biological weapons agents. By drawing parallels in pathogen detection for clinical and defense applications, we can now develop “dual-use” sensors that are less expensive to bring through the development pipeline and can be applied to a wide spectrum of problems.
Dr. Cristina Davis is an assistant professor of mechanical and aeronautical engineering at the University of California, Davis, where her work focuses on the development of microfabricated chemical and biological sensor systems. She is also a collaborating faculty member with the Berkeley Sensors and Actuators Center. Before joining UC Davis, she was a principal member of the technical staff and group leader of bioengineering at The Charles Stark Draper Laboratory (Cambridge, MA). Dr. Davis earned her BS degree at Duke University with a double major in mathematics and biology. She went on to complete her MS and PhD in biomedical engineering at the University of Virginia focusing on cellular biophysics and novel biosensor research. She then worked on silicon-chip based biosensors during a postdoctoral fellowship at The Johns Hopkins University, and she continued this work at Molecular Devices Corporation (Lausanne, Switzerland) to develop a commercialized version of the technology.