Research fields

1.Liquid crystalline polymers, Ordered polymer-based composites, and Advanced energy materials

(Prof. Dr. Xiaolin Xie, Prof. Dr. Xingping Zhou, Dr. Yonggui Liao, Dr.. Zhigang Xue)

Polymer material is a young and rapidly developing materials branch. Since Staudinger first proposed the concept of polymer in 1920, polymer science and technology have experienced from the common plastics, engineering plastics to the functional materials. Meanwhile, functional polymer, a kind of macromolecules with specific optical, electrical, magnetic, thermal properties, has become a leading direction of materials science. The functional polymer materials can be prepared by two methods of direct chemical polymerization and physical compounding. Compared to the chemical method with long-term cycle and high cost, the compounding is an important way to realize functional polymer materials. Our research spans:

a.Liquid crystalline polymers, such as polymer dispersed liquid crystal (PDLC), liquid crystalline physical gel.

b.Ordered polymer-based composites, e.g., novel fabrication methods, and their advanced applications in anti-counterfeiting and electronic packaging, etc.

c.Advanced energy materials, including polymer electrolyte, polymer-modified electrode materials


2.Microstructured polymer materials and interfaces

(Prof. Dr. Jintao Zhu, Dr. Lei Shen)

Our group works on the design and fabrication of polymer materials with well-ordered and hierarchical structures for the application of nanodevices, diagnostics, bioimaging, drug delivery and targeting. A variety of approaches are developed to tailor the internal, shape and interfacial structures of the polymer materials. Our primary interests lie in:

a.Self-assembly of polymers and nanoparticles within confined spaces;

b.Drug delivery and controlled release;

c.Microfluidics processing of functional nanoparticles;

d.Adsorption of bioacromolecules at biointerfaces;

e.Supramolecular assembly and smart gel.


3.Microporous polymer and nanomaterials

(Prof. Dr. Bien Tan, Dr. Liyun Liang)

Microporous materials with pores smaller than 2 nm, are nowadays at the forefront of materials research due to their potential applications in gas storage and separation, catalysis, and conductivity. Among them, microporous organic polymers (MOPs), which are comprised of light, non-metallic elements such as C, H, O, N, and B, have attracted considerable attention and are becoming an important class of microporous materials. Our primary research interest:

a.Novel microporous materials

b.Gas storage by microporous

c.Methodology for noble metal nanoparticles preparation

4. Macro Bio-Molecules analysis in limited speces

(Prof. Dr. Fan Xia, Dr. Zhifei Chen, Dr. Xiaoding Lou)

Accurate and quantitative analysis of microRNA (miRNA) expression has become imperative for further understanding the biological functions of miRNAs, early diagnosis of disease, and discovery of new anticancer drugs.

Evidence from recent studies indicates that aberrant miRNA expression is highly correlated with the development of human cancers. We focus on advancing methods for DNA detection with high sensitivity, specificity and clinical application.

Integrating biological components into artificial devices establish an interface to understand and imitate the superior functionalities of the living systems. Recent advances in molecular science and nanotechnology offer unprecedented opportunities to miniaturize chemical analysis systems into ion-channel-mimetic nanofluidic architectures with single-molecule sensitivity, target-specific selectivity, shortened analysis time, and reduced material consumption for real-world applications.

We focus on developing attractive biosensors in nanopores. For example, we proved a strategy for DNA detection by integrating a complex DNA nanostructure within the nanopores that contains multiple target-binding sites on each of its long concatamers and provides a built-in amplification mechanism. This leads to enhanced signal strength, a better detection limit, and anti-interference capability.


5.  Phosphorus chemistry and phosphorus-based functional polymer

(Prof. Dr. Cheng-Mei Liu, Dr. Jin-Jun Qiu)

Phosphorus is one of the most abundant elements on earth and small amounts of phosphorus in a polymer can be greatly advantageous. Normally,two kinds of phosphorus-containing polymer have been widely studied, namely polyphosphoester and poly(phosphine oxide). Our researches focus on:

a.Chemistry of phosphorus and phosphorus-containing polymer

b.Green or eco-friendly methods to prepare poly(phosphine oxide)s

c.Design and synthesis of biopolymers for tissue engineering and other medical