Postdoctoral Scholars


Francesco Del Giudice
I received my PhD in Chemical Engineering at the University of Naples last April, under the supervision of Prof. Pier Luca Maffettone. During that period I was also a fellow at the Centre for Advanced Biomaterial for Healthcare  and visiting PhD student at University of Glasgow, working in strict contact with Dr. Manlio Tassieri. During this period I studied the effect of the fluid rheology on particle migration in square-shaped micro channels. In addition, during my period in Glasgow, I studied the use of optical tweezers in the microrheology of complex systems. Finally, we derived a novel method for measuring the fluid relaxation time through microfluidic flow. I joined this amazing group in December 2015 for my first Postdoc experience and I am currently working on the use of non-Newtonian fluids together with suspended cells for biomedical application. In addition, I am moving forward in the study of microfluidic techniques for deriving properties of complex fluids. Beside work, I like reading, travelling, meeting new people and sharing cultures. I like Salsa music and I am a piano player/composer.


Casey Galvin – Research and Development scientist in Sysmex, Japan
I joined the MBN unit at OIST in November of 2014. Prior to that, I completed my PhD at NC State University with Prof. Jan Genzer, studying the swelling behavior of surface-grafted polyelectrolytes. My interests include polymer and interfacial sciences, and I look forward to branching into microfluidics and responsive particles during my tenure in the MBN unit. I have most recently spent my free time studying Japanese, practicing martial arts, and getting my swimming abilities ready for Okinawa's shores.


Sébastien Ricoult – Research Scientist II in Illumina, Cambridge
I completed a neuroengineering Ph.D. at McGill University in Montreal, Canada and joined the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics Unit as a postdoctoral scholar in May 2015. My past work was aimed at developing micro/nanotechnologies to study axonal navigation. These included a nanopatterning-based haptotaxis assay to identify gradient geometries most apt to guide neurons to desired targets. To become a well-rounded micro/nanotechnologies engineer, I will now complement my surface patterning skills with experience in the exciting field of microfluidics


Michael Boehm 
Be it jelly giggling, rod climbing, marshmallows stretching, waves crashing on shore, clouds in the sky, the swirl of a galaxy or milk mixing into coffee...I am inspired by the flow and deformation of matter. And I would have to be because, as anyone who has used a rheometer knows, measuring rheological properties with parallel plates is relatively uneventful, but it fascinates me none the less. 


Doojin Lee – Senior Researcher at Korea Institute of Ceramic Engineering and Technology
I completed my PhD at Seoul National University and joined Shen Unit as a postdoc scholar in June 2014. During my PhD, I specialized in the study of superhydrophobicity, liquid slip, and microparticle separation. And now I'm interested in microdroplet generation and microheating system. Besides work, I enjoy outdoor activities such as soccer, swimming and biking and also love traveling to new places.


Rotation Students

Hung-Ju Chiang
I am a molecular biologist specialized in virology. I received my Bachelor’s degree and a Master's degree in Clinical Laboratory Science and Biotechnology in Taiwan; I also hold a second Master’s degree in Biology from the US. It is the nature of clinical laboratory scientists to wish to minimize the scale of clinical examinations. I am therefore interested in microfluidic devices, which seem to be a promising platform in this regard. Outside the lab I enjoy listening to heavy metal music. I am also a drummer and play rock and metal music.


Ali Rahmani
I joined Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics Unit at OIST in May 2017 as a PhD student for my first rotation. Before that, I received M.S and B.S in chemical engineering from Sharif University of Technology and Isfahan University of Technology, respectively. During my Master I developed a dielectrophoretic based microfluidic platform to separate biological cells. I am really interested in the design and fabrication of Micro/Nanofluidic platforms for diagnostic applications. Besides research, I enjoy reading Iran & world literature, and running.


Agneesh Barua
I am a biologist by training with a specialization in Genetics. I have worked on projects related to using medicinal plant extracts to combat fungal infections, cancer biology, and even understanding the way snake venom evolves. I joined the Shen unit for my first PhD rotation with the intention of using microfluidics to understand the various steps involved in cancer metastasis. 


Tsung-Han Hsieh – Rotation Student
I completed my bachelor and master in National Yang Ming University, Taiwan, then spent 6 years working different biotech companies. When I was in the industry, I always felt I should replenish myself with more knowledge. I finally made my mind last year. Now I am here, in Okinawa, to seek more knowledge and any possibilities to build up enterprise based on my research or innovation.



Maki Kohata Thomas ­– Rotation Student
I enrolled Marine Biology Department in University of  Ryukyus, Japan with interests in ecosystems in tidal flats, then transferred to University of Massachusetts where I received my B.S. degree in Environmental Science/Hydrology.  My current interest is biochemical cycles in complex estuarine environment, especially mangrove forests. Getting myself familiarized with nano, and micro scale particles and films for the first time at this unit was great experience. I am hoping to derive this experience to better understand the physical phenomenon dominated by nano scale clay particles in the estuarine environment in the future.


Rob Campbell – Rotation Student, Summer 2016
I completed my undergraduate studies at Skidmore College in the United States, earning a dual degree in physics and international affairs. I then spent several years working in international sustainable development and communications before returning to the world of research. After a hands-on introduction to MEMS and microfluidics at the Harvard Extension School in Boston I came to OIST to further integrate my interest in “squishy physics” with the study of biological systems. 


Research Interns

Sk Rameez Iqbal
I am currently a Ph.D. Research Scholar in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, IIT Madras, India where I am pursuing my Doctoral research work under the supervision of Dr. Ashis Kumar Sen from IIT Madras, India and the co-supervision of Prof. Amy Shen, from OIST, Japan. I joined the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics (Shen) Unit at OIST as a research intern in spring 2017 (Nov 2017-March 2018). My research interest includes dynamics of the Fluid-Fluid Interfaces on various substrates. Besides, I also work on Capillary flows, Wetting and Interfacial Phenomena and Superhydrophobic Surfaces. At OIST I am working on a fascinating problem inspired by the famous Coffee Ring Effect. I am grateful to be a part of Shen unit and would like to gain knowledge and hone my skills in this unique and fabulous research environment in the best possible way. Besides work, I love reading, travelling and interacting peoples from different parts of the world. I really enjoy the life at OIST and of course the very beautiful landscapes of Okinawa.


Steffen Recktenwald
I joined the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics (Shen) Unit at OIST as a research intern in fall 2017. I am currently a PhD student at the Chemical Engineering department at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany where my research mainly focuses on the rheology of wormlike micellar surfactant solutions. Here at OIST, I use microfluidic techniques to study the flow behavior and the phenomenon of flow-induced structure formation of these self-assembling systems in extension. I am very grateful to be a part of Shen Unit and it is a great opportunity to learn new experimental methods in a unique research environment. Away from the lab, I enjoy playing squash, practicing yoga and outdoor activities such as climbing, hiking and snorkeling in beautiful Okinawa.


Cameron Hopkins
I am a PhD student in Physics from The University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario, Canada.  My PhD research is focused on rheology and the development of new experimental tools for studying the microscale structure of complex materials.  I started an internship in the Micro-Bio-and Nanofluidics unit in January 2017. My research here is focused on studying the instability that forms in certain flows for Graphene-Oxide suspensions. This is observed in large-scale flow geometries, however, we are also interested in seeing if the same instability forms in microfluidic channels and intend on fabricating microfluidic devices to study this phenomenon.  This internship will introduce me to new aspects of rheology and fluid mechanics that are outside the scope of my PhD, and I am grateful to OIST and Professor Shen for allowing me this tremendous opportunity. 


Mohmed Ashra Mulla
I am a PhD student in the Chemical Engineering department at the University of Leeds, UK. The opportunity to carry out research in the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics unit arose thanks to generous funding from the Royal Society of Chemistry and from Professor Amy Shen. My research at OIST focusses on the elongational flow of sub 100 nm latex particles, which require methods based on microfluidics. This internship is a great opportunity to expand my knowledge and research interests beyond the confines of traditional colloidal science. 


Mariana Rodriguez Hakim
I visited the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics unit at OIST during the fall of 2016. I am currently a PhD candidate in Chemical Engineering at Stanford University (California, USA), where I am studying soluto-capillary flows in thin liquid films. Specifically, I am interested in examining the effects of liquid evaporation and composition on flow generation and stability.  My time at OIST focused on the experimental investigation of these soluto-capillary flow instabilities through the use of color interferometry and microscopy. Outside work, I enjoy listening to music, dancing, traveling, and spending time with my friends.


Abhishek Sinha -Research Intern (July 2016- Oct 2016)
I joined the micro/bio/nanofluidics unit as a research intern after receiving my Bachelor of Science from McGill University. During my undergraduate degree I took part in a Neuroengineering research project under the supervision of Dr. Timothy Kennedy and Dr. David Juncker, during which I used various surface patterning techniques to investigate cellular responses to extracellular matrix components. By joining the MBN unit I hope to diversify my knowledge of micro/nanotechnology through microfluidics. Outside of the lab I love practicing martial arts, rock-climbing, and traveling to new countries. I am especially excited to take advantage of Okinawa’s beautiful snorkeling and unique cuisine.


Rintaro Hayashi-Research Intern (March 2016-July 2016)
I completed my M.S.  in Mechanical Engineering last year at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa. My thesis is on the backscatter response of polymer contrast agent subjected to high frequency ultrasound. I am also interested in the study of low Reynolds number flow which is why I became interested in microfluidics. I joined the Micro/Bio/Nano-fluidics Unit this year in March as a research intern. During my internship, I would like to investigate the formation of micellar structure under various flow condition.


Shwetha Meena Sakthi Nallasivam - Research Intern (October 2015-March 2016)
I completed my Bachelor of Technology in Chemical Engineering from Kongu Engineering College, Anna University in India. I joined the Micro/Bio/ Nano Fluidics Unit in October 2015 and I have been working on simultaneous generation and separation of emulsion droplets. 


Viviane Lutz Bueno – JSPS Fellow
I’m a PhD student at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology - ETH Zürich. The opportunity of visiting OIST was provided by a Japanese-Swiss program, which grants JSPS fellowships for overseas researchers. My research activities link the fields of soft matter physics and small angle scattering. The online investigation of confinement and flow effects on the microstructure of soft mater required the development of new methods based on microfluidics. Being part of Shen’s group is a great opportunity to exchange information and carry out important experiments on the field. When I’m out of the lab, I enjoy the sun and the sea – for that Okinawa is also a great opportunity.


Masashi Kaneda - Research Intern (February-March 2016)
I'm a third year under graduate student, majoring in Environmental Engineering at Hokkaido University, Japan. And I'm currently a research intern at OIST in the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics Unit until the end of March 2016. I learn how to measure surface tension and interfacial tension, and also make a PDMS. Almost all of them are new to me, so I hope I gain some environmental knowledge and skills as long as possible during this intern. And I have one more thing I want to do while I'm staying here is practice my English, so I'm grad you'll talk to me and please just don't wait until I can do it. I'm quite sure this experience will do me good for the future.


Aniket Ravan ­– Research Intern (July - December 2015)
I graduated from IIT Roorkee with a Master's degree in Physics in May 2015 and am currently a research intern at OIST in the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics (Shen) unit until November 2015. My work here mainly involves using computational methods for analysis of data obtained from in vitro experiments aimed at understanding cell migration, while I also hope to learn a few experimental techniques in Microfluidics during my stay here. 


Ya Zhao – Research Intern (Summer 2014)
I visited OIST summer 2014 as a research intern in Micro/Bio/Nano fluidics unit, and I'm also a Ph.D candidate from Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington. My research with Prof.Shen focuses on the rheological characterizations of complex fluids, fluid dynamics of wormlike micellar solutions in microfluidic device, including experimental studies and potential simulation work. I think OIST offers a great opportunity to experience the vibrant and intensive research environment and immerse myself in higher learning and to make a difference.


Dan Walls – Research Intern (Spring 2015)
I visited the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics Unit at OIST in the spring of 2015 from Stanford University, where I am a PhD candidate in Chemical Engineering. My time at OIST focused on confocal microscopy and PIV experiments to advance my research project, which is a collaboration with Professor Shen. The aim of the project is to understand the physics of a sessile drop spreading in a miscible environment. The two types of experiments performed at OIST further elicudated the flow pattern that develops over the course of the droplet spreading. Outside of the lab I enjoyed my explorations of Okinawa, particularly Heiwa-Kinen Koen and Hedo-misaki. I am grateful to Professor Shen for hosting my visit and her unit members for their warm welcome and assistance.


Cifeng Fang – Research Intern (Spring 2015)
I visited the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidic Unit at OIST in the spring of 2015. I'm also a Ph.D candidate from Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington. My internship in Shen unit turns out to be a unforgettable experience. During my time in OIST, I focused on building a 2D microfuildic droplets/particles/cells trapping and localized heating platform, which is originally raised when Prof. Shen is still in University of Washington. The world leading experimental space and highly trained and helpful lab members made my work in OIST both efficient and smooth. It's my pleasure to work with Prof. Shen and her unit members on the fascinating and challenging topics in complex fluids and interfacial tension dynamics. 


Christina Ripken – Research Intern (January - June 2015)
I received both of my master degrees from the University of Bonn, Germany, in Biology and in Agricultural Science & Resource Management in the Tropics & Subtropics, respectively. After joining the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics (Shen) Unit of OIST in December 2014 I have been working on a collaboration project with the Marine Biophysics Unit (Mitarai) Unit on applying microfluidics methods to answer questions about the marine ecology and the micro-environment of planktonic Dinoflagellates.


James Baye – Research Intern (Summer 2015)
I am currently a research intern in the OIST Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics Unit until September 2015, date at which I will go back to Grenoble, France, to pursue my Biomedical Engineering MEng.
My project consists in the design of an in vitro screening device to accompany nanoparticle formulation for Boron Neutron Capture Therapy (cancer therapy). I hope to make the most of my stay in Okinawa. The island in itself is a wonderful place to stay, that combined with the amazing working conditions that OIST provides... Okinawa as I see it is a great place to be. I am eager to learn and discover more!

Visiting Research Students

Yohei Nishikawa
I am currently a PhD student at the department of life science and medical bioscience, Waseda University. My current work uses droplet microfluidics for analyzing environmental bacteria at the single-cell level. I am visiting Shen unit for studying how to fabricate the microfluidic device for isolating bacteria. I am so inspired because the technique of Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics unit is new for me. I am very grateful to be a member of Shen Unit. I really enjoy the life in OIST and also enjoy local food and beautiful landscape in Okinawa.

Visiting Reseachers

Lucie Ducloué – Visiting Researcher
I completed my PhD in 2014, working in Laboratoire Navier (Universit・Paris-Est, France) on the rheology of bubble suspensions in complex fluids. I then joined the Manchester Centre for Nonlinear Dynamics (University of Manchester, UK) for my first postdoctoral research position, during which I investigated viscous fingering instabilities in a channel with a compliant boundary. I am currently a postdoctoral researcher at PMMH (ESPCI, France), where I work with Anke Lindner and Sandra Lerouge on the elastic instability of polymeric solutions in curved microchannels. My short visit at OIST is part of a collaboration with the Micro/Bio/Nanofluidics Unit in which we aim at characterizing the elasticity-induced secondary flows that develop for polymeric solutions in curved microchannels. Outside work, I like swimming and walking, two perfect hobbies to enjoy beautiful Okinawa!


Joshua Cardiel – Visiting Researcher (Summer 2014)
I earned my PhD in Mechanical Engineering and Nanotechnology at the University of Washington, Seattle, USA. My PhD research focused on complex fluids and microfluidics. Currently, I'm a visiting researcher at OIST. I'm investigating how different ionic solutions interact with micellar solutions by using microfluidics. I am also studying the behavior of non-ionic surfactant solutions at different temperatures to induce the formation of biocompatible gel-like materials.
Outside my research, I spend time watching movies (I'm cinephile), working out and doing any kind of outdoor activity!