Newell R. Washburn , PhD

Dr. Newell Washburn is an Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biomedical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh. He is also President of Washburn Therapeutics, Inc., which develops gels for controlling inflammation and treating injuries and disease states. It offers biologically active gels that control inflammation by selectively neutralizing pro-inflammatory cytokines.

Dr. Washburn received his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley in Chemistry. Following post-doctoral research at the University of Minnesota in the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, he moved to the Polymers Division at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, first as a National Research Council Post-Doctoral Fellow then as Leader of the Biomaterials Group. During this time he was also an Adjunct Professor at Johns Hopkins University in the Graduate Program in Biotechnology.

Dr. Washburn’s research interests center on development of polymeric biomaterials. The goal of the Washburn Group is to develop biomimetic matrices for tissue engineering. Using fluorescence spectroscopy techniques, Dr. Washburn and his team measure the dynamics of powerful signaling molecules in therapeutically effective biological materials. With these measurements as design criteria, they synthesize functional equivalents incorporating novel ligands for tuning interactions between signaling molecules and engineered matrices. Finally, they screen cellular responses to these complex matrices using combinatorial methods in order to develop a global understanding of the ways in which these matrices can guide cellular responses.

Dr. Washburn is a Member of the American Chemical Society and the Materials Research Society. He is an Ad hoc Member of NIH BMBI Study Section (2014-2015) and a Member of the Veterans Administration Tissue Engineering Review Panel (2014). He also serves to review publications for numerous journals, including but not limited to, Biomacromolecules, Biotechnology and Bioengineering, Biomaterials, the Journal of Applied Polymer Science,Langmuir, and Macromolecules.

View a list of Dr. Washburn’s publications here.