BME faculty member Dr. Zhen Gu has been named in MIT Technology Review’s 2015 list of 35 Innovators Under 35. This list of innovators features inspiring and creative people who are creating important emerging technologies. The selection process involves nominations from the public, MIT Technology Review editors, and international partners who publish Innovators Under 35 lists in their regions. Editors trim the list down to 80 people, who then submit descriptions of their work and letters of reference. Outside judges rate the finalists on the originality and impact of their work, then editors choose the group of 35.
Dr. Gu was selected because of his promising work with his insulin delivery patch. The patch is small, and covered with more than 100 microneedles. The needles have tiny sacs with insulin and an enzyme, and the sac is permeable enough to allow glucose inside. The enzyme converts the glucose to an acid that makes the sac open and release the insulin when sugar is too high. Dr. Gu will begin testing his patch on pigs, whose skin is more similar to humans than mice. Eventually he hopes to create a patch that can be replaced every two to three days and control blood sugar without much pain or effort.
See the full list here and read Dr. Gu’s profile here. UNC and NC State are both featuring articles about Dr. Gu’s selection. See UNC’s article here and NC State’s article here, as well as the article for UNC SOM’s Vital Signs and for NC TraCS.