The American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) has elected University at Buffalo nanomedicine researcher Jonathan F. Lovell to its College of Fellows.
Election to the AIMBE College of Fellows is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to a medical and biological engineer. The College of Fellows is comprised of the top 2% of medical and biological engineers.
Lovell was nominated, reviewed, and elected by peers and members of the College of Fellows “for outstanding contributions to the fields of drug and vaccine delivery, based on development of innovative nanoscale technologies.”
Lovell is a SUNY Empire Innovation Professor in the UB Department of Biomedical Engineering, a joint program of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
One of the world’s top researchers in nanomedicine, Lovell’s lab develops safer and more efficient ways to control the delivery of medicine inside the body.
His research has led to the creation of a new imaging technique involving nanoparticles suspended in liquid to form a “nanojuice” that patients drink. Upon reaching the small intestine, doctors would strike the nanoparticles with a harmless laser light, providing an unparalleled, noninvasive, real-time view of the organ to aid in the diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome, celiac disease, Crohn’s disease and other gastrointestinal illnesses.
Lovell’s other biomedical advancements include the development of a new drug delivery method targeting cancer cells by encapsulating anticancer drugs in nanoballoons – which are tiny, modified liposomes that when struck by a red laser, pop open and deliver concentrated doses of medicine. The innovation could improve cancer treatment, reduce its side effects and boost research about the disease, which annually kills millions of people worldwide.
His lab has also successfully freeze-dried a liposome-based liquid vaccine formula that could be developed for potential use in COVID-19 vaccines and shipped and stored at room temperature, eliminating logistical problems associated with some of the most popular existing vaccines.
Lovell joined UB in 2012 after receiving a PhD in biomedical engineering from the University at Toronto, a master’s degree from McMaster University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Waterloo.
He is a recipient of a 2016 CAREER Award, the National Science Foundation's most prestigious award in support of junior faculty, and he has published more than 130 academic journal articles.
In addition to his work at UB, Lovell serves as an adjunct faculty member at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and is a co-founder of POP Biotechnologies, a Buffalo-based startup that commercializes technology created in his UB lab. The company is developing, among other products, EuCorVac-19, a recombinant protein vaccine displaying the SARS-CoV-2 receptor-binding domain antigen on the immunogenic liposomes.
AIMBE inducted Lovell and 140 colleagues who make up the AIMBE College of Fellows Class of 2023 on March 27.