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News Release

Anticancer vaccines, natural language for computers, and multifunctional materials take center stage at UC San Diego Research Expo

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San Diego, CA, March 14, 2019 -- The University of California San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering was just ranked the #11 graduate engineering program in the country by US News. Hear from more than 200 of these talented graduate students as they present their research at the 38th annual Jacobs School Research Expo, a showcase of the top engineering and computer science work underway at UC San Diego.

Research Expo 2019 is on April 18. Register today to reserve your spot.

In addition to seeing what technologies are coming down the pike at the graduate student poster session and connecting with the students and faculty developing them, Research Expo 2019 will feature faculty talks on industry-relevant topics. Nano-vaccines for cancer immunotherapy, enabling natural language processors to generalize, and multifunctional materials for warfighter and structural monitoring, are the themes of this year’s TED-style faculty talks.

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Professors Ken Loh, Ndapa Nakashole and Liangfang Zhang will share their latest research in industry-focused TED-style talks.

Liangfang Zhang
Nanoengineering professor Liangfang Zhang will focus his Research Expo talk on efforts to engineer the immune system to protect against cancer. Some of Zhang’s recent work includes developing micromotors to enable needle-free oral vaccines; tiny ultrasound-powered robots that can swim through blood removing harmful bacteria and toxins; and nanosponges that can absorb and neutralize proteins that play a role in rheumatoid arthritis. His talk at Research Expo will highlight the use of nanotechnology in designing anticancer vaccines that train the immune system to properly utilize its own resources to fight against cancer. The story behind his nanosponge idea and his role in the creation of this new field are the subject of this Science News article. Zhang is the co-director of a new agile research center at the Jacobs School called the Center for Nano Immuno-Engineering, and a member of UC San Diego’s Institute of Engineering in Medicine.

Ndapa Nakashole
Computer science professor Ndapa Nakashole develops algorithms that enable computers to understand and generate human language, a la Siri and Alexa. These systems run on algorithms and large sets of data, and perform well when the training and test data are from the same distribution. In her Research Expo talk, Nakashole will share her work towards natural language processing models that are able to generalize under data distribution changes.

Ken Loh
Structural engineering professor Ken Loh focuses on multifunctional materials for both civilian and military applications. In his Research Expo talk, he’ll discuss new multifunctional materials he’s developing to serve as a platform for high-performance sensors for military personnel and physical structures, particularly for the U.S. Navy and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. His ARMOR lab has worked on projects like new methods of enabling soft robots to move; creating a smart tarmac for airports to detect when a runway is damaged; and fabric sensors that monitor the pressure in the socket of prosthesis interfaces. He also serves as associate director of the UC San Diego Center for Extreme Events Research.

Recruit Students
New to Research Expo this year is a Recruitment Hour and Coffee Bar. If your company is hiring or looking for top tech talent, this is the place to find it. Graduate students from bioengineering, computer science and engineering, electrical and computer engineering, mechanical and aerospace engineering, nanoengineering, and structural engineering are eager to share their research and connect with recruiters.

Research Expo 2019 Schedule: April 18 Register Here

1:30 PM | Registration Opens

2:00 - 4:30 PM | Poster Session

2:30 - 3:30 PM | Faculty Lightning Talks

3:30 - 4:30 PM | NEW! Recruiting Hour & Coffee Bar

4:30 - 6:00 PM | Awards Program and Networking Reception

UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Research Expo 2018 Sponsors

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Thank you to all our industry sponsors:
ASML, Viasat, Leidos, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Qualcomm, UC San Diego Extension, and the UC San Diego Office of Innovation and Commercialization.

Research Expo is presented by the Corporate Affiliates Program of the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.

Media Contacts

Katherine Connor
Jacobs School of Engineering