Nathan Swami

Swami, Nathan

Primary Appointment

Research Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering

Contact Information


Research Disciplines

Biophysics, Biotechnology, Cancer Biology, Infectious Diseases/Biodefense

Research Interests

Molecular and bioelectric devices; tissue regeneration.

Research Description


Nano-electromagnetics (NEMS)--Signaling at the nano/bio interface: The measurement, analysis and propagation of electrical, magnetic and optical signals with nanoscale spatial resolution is of interest within biomolecular sensing, morphogenesis, tissue regeneration, ion-channel signaling and the directed hierarchical assembly of materials. Our research group focuses on engineering nano-device interfaces to biosystems to harness electrical, magnetic, and optical signal transduction methodologies. Nanostructured devices, due to their enormous surface to volume ratio enable enhanced kinetics, sensitivity and heat transfer, as well as phenomena arising from sub-wavelength structures and the overlap of neighboring electrical double layers. We focus on electrokinetic enrichment, patterning and separation of biosystems for applications within early diagnosis of diseases; guidance of cells for tissue regeneration, and nano-assembly of materials.


Our research is broadly organized within the following areas:

(1) Microfluidic devices for selective pre-concentration and separation of biological cells using electrokinetic and magnetic manipulation

(2) Nanofluidic devices for dielectrophoretic enrichment of biomarkers for high-sensitivity detection of cancer biomarkers, mRNA from infectious agents, and viruses

(3) Electrical and optical signal transduction on micro- and nanofluidic devices: Integrating sensing with localized manipulation

(4) Electrical and magnetic methods for the alignment, patterning and hierarchical assembly of nanostructures

Most Recent Publications:

Recent Publications (Full list at: )

“Nanofiber size-dependent sensitivity of fibroblast directionality to the methodology for scaffold alignment”, V. Chaurey, F. Block, R. Su, P. Chiang, E.A. Botchwey, C.F. Chou, N. Swami*, Acta Biomaterialia (2012): Journal Impact Factor = 4.865

“Nano-constriction device for rapid protein pre-concentration in physiological media by electrokinetic force balance”, K.T. Liao, M. Tsegaye, V. Chaurey, C.F. Chou, N. Swami*. Electrophoresis (2012), 33, 1958-1966. Journal Impact Factor =3.3

“Interplay of electrical forces for alignment of sub-100 nm electrospun nanofibers at insulator gap collectors”, V. Chaurey, P. Chiang, C. Polanco, R. Su, C.F. Chou, N. Swami*. Langmuir (2010), 26 (24), pp 19022–19026. DOI: 10.1021/la102209q. Journal Impact Factor = 4.1

“Enhancing DNA hybridization kinetics through constriction-based dielectrophoresis”, N. Swami*, C.F. Chou, V. Ramamurthy, V. Chaurey, Lab on a chip (2009) 9, 3212-3220. Journal Impact Factor = 6.35

“Dielectric Properties of Biological Molecules in the Terahertz Gap”, Parthasarathy, R.; Globus, T*; Khromova, T; Swami, N.; Woolard, D. Applied Physics Letters (2005), 87, 113901-113903. Journal Impact Factor = 3.72

Selected Publications