Deborah Leckband

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Deborah Leckband

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Deborah Leckband is Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Chemistry at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is recognized internationally for pathbreaking research that identified interfacial forces and molecular mechanisms that control protein adsorption and function at both biological and abiotic interfaces. Professor Leckband is a pioneer in the use of molecular force probes to study proteins at interfaces, and has made major discoveries of the impact of interfacial forces on protein adsorption, recognition, and function. Her studies of the mechanical properties of cell surface adhesion proteins also uncovered novel ways that protein machines at cell surfaces transduce mechanical cues to regulate cell and tissue functions.  Professor Leckband earned her BS and PhDs in Chemistry at Humboldt State University and Cornell, respectively, and was a postdoc with Robert Langer (MIT) and then with Jacob Israelachvili (UCSB). She is an Editor of Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces and has held positions in the American Chemical Society Colloids Division and the Biomedical Engineering Society. She has also served on several national and international advisory boards.