Ilya Levental

Levental, Ilya

Primary Appointment

Associate Professor, Research Discipline, Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics


  • BS, Chemical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Max Planck Institute for Cell Biology and Genetics, Dresden Germany
  • PhD, Bioengineering, University of Pennsylvania, PA

Contact Information


Research Disciplines

Biophysics, Biophysics & Structural Biology, Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics

Research Interests

Composition, Biophysics and Physiology of Cellular Membranes

Research Description

The overall goal of our research is to understand the fundamental mechanisms by which membranes and dietary lipids regulate cell physiology. By understanding the cell biology of lipids and membranes, we hope to identify targets for treatment of human diseases.

Cell membranes are composites of biological macromolecules with a multitude of chemical interactions, which give rise to complex phase behaviors and physical properties. Thus, their study inherently requires a multidisciplinary approach, which is reflected in the richly interdisciplinary, collaborative environment of our lab.

We combine tools from molecular and cell biology, membrane biophysics, protein biochemistry, and synthetic biology with expertise from biology, chemistry, engineering, and physics to answer fundamental about the nature and function of cell membranes.

Selected Publications