Mirkin, who earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry at Dickinson and a Ph.D. in chemistry from The Pennsylvania State University, is professor of materials science and engineering, chemistry, chemical and biological engineering, biomedical engineering and medicine at Northwestern University, as well as director of Northwestern’s International Institute of Nanotechnology.
“This council represents leaders from many scientific disciplines who will bring a diversity of experience and views,” President Barack Obama said when he announced the formation of the panel. “I will charge PCAST with advising me about national strategies to nurture and sustain a culture of scientific innovation.”
Mirkin’s expertise in nanotechnology includes nano-scale manufacturing and applications to biology and medicine. Awarded the Feynman Prize in Nanotechnology in 2002, he is one of the top-cited researchers in nano-medicine, as well as one of the most widely cited chemists. In 2004, Dickinson awarded Mirkin an honorary doctor of arts and science degree.
Nanosphere, one of Mirkin’s companies, has commercialized a suite of molecular diagnostic technologies from his laboratory for a wide range of highly sensitive genetic, bacterial and viral diseases.
The technology also is useful for creating mobile sensors for bioterror weapons, such as anthrax and plague, for use in homeland defense and on the battlefield.
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