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Acharya Lab

Teaching & Outreach

TEACHING

 

CHE 352 – Chemical Engineering Lab I

Course Description

Engineering lab equipment, data collection and analysis; strengthens ability to generate written reports and oral presentations; reinforces teamwork skills; strengthens and extends the understanding of earlier technical contents in the curriculum; strengthens abilities in recognizing and understanding key issues associated with lab and process safety.

 

CHE 494 / 598 – Immune Engineering

Course Description

Immune engineering represents the intersection of engineering and immunology to design new technologies that can be used to better understand the immune system as well as direct it to improve health. Students will gain proficiency in the field by becoming capable of integrating basic concepts in immunology with emerging technologies, understanding primary research literature, critically analyzing data, and designing experiments. Toward this objective, the course will be taught using modules: (1) fundamentals of immunology, covering nomenclature of immunology, components of innate and adaptive immunity, and more; (2) the immunologist’s toolbox, covering key experimental tools used to study immune responses, enabling students to critically analyze data in the literature and design experiments; (3) vaccines and immunotherapies, describing established and emerging vaccines and immunomodulatory drugs and mechanisms of action; and (4) the immune engineer’s toolbox, providing a foundation of drug-delivery, material science and molecular engineering principles in the context of vaccines and immunomodulatory drugs.

 

OUTREACH

 

HIGH SCHOOL

Exposure to emerging sciences in high school is extremely important, and can make a great impression on students as they choose next stages of their education. Proper motivation and guidance can help encourage students to pursue STEM majors in college. Therefore, we strongly believe that high school is the most impactful target for the goals of introducing students to STEM as a research field, specifically in chemical engineering and bioengineering. Currently, our lab is a member of The SCience and ENgineering Experience (SCENE) high school program, and we mentor high school students in our lab working on formulation development.

OPENDOOR @ASU  

For one Saturday in February, ASU hosts Open door event for parents and children from the local community which attracat >10,000 visitors to the Tempe campus ever year. Our research group staffs a table with fun, hands-on activities to illustrate concepts at the interface of materials and biology. Our lab participated in the  2019, 2020 OpenDoor@ASU and we taught children and parents about natural polymers (PhD and Master’s student at Opendoor).

 

VIDEO GAME FOR LEARNING METABOLISM – IMMUNITY RAGE 

The computer game is designed where the interface allows the user to drive a vehicle through different paths of the metabolic pathways with drugs represented by road-blocks that can be used to inhibit specific pathways. This game provides user-interface to glycolysis, amino acid synthesis, fatty acid oxidation, viral genome insertions, and Krebs cycle. The ability to control metabolic pathways provides the user to overcome the ‘Warburg effect’ or glycolysis hijacking by cancer cells in the tumor microenvironment, which often leads to immune cells not functioning optimally.  This game also allows the user to choose different metabolites, metabolic inhibitors, and genetic manipulation of enzymes to control the metabolic pathways. 

Game link will be available soon!