About Me

I am an assistant professor at the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine (WFIRM), associate professor of clinical medicine in the Department of Medicine at the University of Missouri and adjunct faculty member of the Vision Research Center at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

As a cryobiologist and entrepreneur in the fields of cryobiology and cryopreservation, I am the top reviewer for the Journal of Cryobiology and a reviewer for over 20 study sections of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Under my guidance, 6 students have obtained PhD, DVM or MS degrees in the field of cryobiology or cryopreservation.

I am the leading inventor of 6 issued international patents and 8 pending patent applications. The company I founded, CryoCrate, is an NIH Innovation Showcase Company. Under my direction as principal investigator, we secured 8 NIH Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) awards (including 4 direct Phase II awards), 2 DoD Therapeutic Development or Idea Development awards, an NIFA SBIR award, 2 Coulter Foundation Translational Partnership awards and a Mid-American Transplant Clinical Innovation award.

Among my notable discoveries is the unique Hexagonal-ice Ablation on Nanoscale (abbreviated as HAN) mechanism, by which thermally stable nanoscale cubic ice is unprecedentedly introduced into the freezing process of biomaterials from solely using polymers. That invention paved the way for the development of a pioneering biocompatible cryopreservation medium product line. The associated advancement transcends existing conventional methods by eliminating the need for all types of traditional cell-penetrating and bio-reactive cryoprotectants, as well as liquid nitrogen reliance for long-term storage and transportation.

My team’s research has led to the invention of various other transformative technologies. These include a polymer-based tissue decellularization and ultra-structural preservation medium, an ice-filtering device to screen out cell-damaging ice formation and an ultra-fast cooling device system quenching liquid nitrogen evaporation in a regular lab environment.

My collaborative efforts extend beyond academia. By partnering with leading blood banks, skin banks, eye banks and organ procurement organizations, my team envisions establishing a comprehensive and synchronized cryo-inventory network. This innovative network aims to not only enhance traditional tissue and organ donation and transplantation practices, but also lay the groundwork for a robust supply chain infrastructure to support emerging biomedical industries that leverage cell-based therapeutic materials in modern health care.

I received my bachelor's degree at the University of Science and Technology of China and my doctoral degree at the University of Kentucky.