Sima Asadi, Postdoctoral Associate
Department of Chemical Engineering
Droplets and Particles: from Disease Transmission to Disease Treatment
Abstract: Pathogen-laden droplets emitted during human respiratory activities are commonly assumed to be the main vehicles for airborne spread of the infectious diseases. Much prior research has focused on `violent' activities like sneezing and coughing, and less attention has been paid to the role of human speech. In the rst part of this talk, I will demonstrate how dierent features of vocalization (loudness, voicing, and articulation manner) aect the emission rate of infectious droplets. I will then introduce a new mode of airborne pathogen transport via microscopic non-respiratory particles, which we refer to as `aerosolized fomites.' I will provide experimental evidence that supports the existence of this mode, and will discuss its implications for disease transmission in animal models and between humans.
In the second part of this talk, I will turn my attention to shape-engineered droplets and hydrogels as an essential component of particle encapsulation technology. I will present the methodology that I have recently developed to produce non-spherical alginate particles leveraging the yield stress property of viscoplastic uids. I will further discuss their application in controlled drug delivery and cell encapsulation for disease treatment. I will conclude my presentation by outlining the visions for my future research program.
Bio: I am currently a Postdoctoral Associate in the Department of Chemical Engineering at MIT, where I work with Prof. Patrick Doyle on synthesizing shaped-engineered droplets and hydrogels. I completed my PhD in Chemical Engineering at UC Davis under the supervision of Prof. William Ristenpart in 2020. My dissertation on the airborne infectious disease transmission received the 2021 Zuhair A. Munir Award for the Best Doctoral Dissertation in the College of Engineering at
UC Davis. Prior to UC Davis, I earned an MS degree in Chemical/Polymer Engineering at Sharif University of Technology and a BS degree in Chemical Engineering at the University of Tabriz in Iran.
If you are a member of the WashU community, login with your WUSTL Key to interact with events, personalize your calendar, and get recommendations.Login with WUSTL Key
If you are not a member of the WashU community, please login via one of the options below to interact with our calendar.