Group Members

  • Candan Tamerler - Principal Investigator

    Dr. Tamerler joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering at University of Kansas in 2013. Previously, she held positions at the University of Washington (UW) as a Research Professor in the Materials Science and Engineering Department and also as the Assistant director of the Genetically-Engineered Materials Science & Engineering Center, a NSF MRSEC facility. Preceding her positions at UW, Dr. Tamerler was a Full Professor at Instanbul Technical University (ITU) and served as the Chair of their Molecular Biology and Genetics Department from 2002 through 2010 (while concurrently holding a Visiting Professor position at UW). During her time at ITU, Professor Tamerler founded and was the Director of the Molecular Biology-Biotechnology & Genetics Research Center (ITU MOBGAM), a multi-disciplinary initiative involving faculty members from the College of Engineering as well as the College of Arts and Science. She played an integral role in raising funds for the construction of the 40,000 sq. ft. MOBGAM building as well as the innovative research conducted within the Center.


    Dr. Tamerler's current research interests are in molecular biomimetics, bio-nanotechnology, and bio-enabled materials science. She has published over 90 refereed journal articles, 30 conference proceedings, 5 book chapters, as well as multiple patents. She has organized several symposia and internationally accredited conferences, including those sponsored by the American Chemical Society, The Minerals, Metals and Materials Society (TMS), and the Materials Research Society. Dr. Tamerler has been awarded visiting scientist and professorship positions at the University of Westminster and the University of Nagoya, respectively, and is a Principal Member of the Turkish Academy of Sciences. In 2016, Dr. Tamerler was inducted to the College of Fellows of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). In 2018, Dr. Tamerler was inducted to the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).


    Email: ctamerler@ku.edu


  • Kyle Boone - Postdoctoral Researcher

    Research Interests:

    -Peptide Binding Characterization
    -Computational Peptide Folding
    -Explainable Machine Learning
    -Dental Adhesive Peptide Design
    -Chimeric Peptide Design


    Email: k097b443@ku.edu



  • Nilan Kamathewatta - Postdoctoral Reseacher

    Research Interests:

    -Surface and material scientist
    -Developing collagen thin films, mineralization, and antimicrobial peptides for applications in dentistry
    -Developing novel methods to study peptide affinity towards natural clay samples


    Email: nilan_jayabahu@ku.edu


  • Sarah Woolfolk - Ph.D Graduate Student

    Research Interests:

    Email: sarah.vanoosten@ku.edu



  • Aya Cloyd - MS graduate student

    Research Interests:

    Email: aya.cloyd@ku.edu

  • Alyssa Curry - ph.d graduate student

    Research Interests:

    Email: alyssa.curry@ku.edu


  • Jacob Freitag - Researcher

    Research Interests:

    -Continuing research of multi-year industry-funded grants
    -Development and study of non-organic binding peptides
    -Aids and supports in various projects
    -Makes cookies on occasion


    Email: jfreitag@ku.edu


  • Matthew Jaeschke- Undergraduate Student

    Email: mwjaeschke@ku.edu



  • Ishan De- Undergraduate Student

    Email: i898d220@ku.edu