Rakkiyappan Chandran – Seminar/Ph.D. Defense, Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 9:00 A.M.

JSNN – Rakkiyappan Chandran – Ph.D. Thesis Defense/Thursday Seminar

Candidate: Rakkiyappan Chandran

Advisor and Committee Chair: Dennis R. LaJeunesse, Ph.D.

Department: Nanoscience

Date: Thursday, March 9, 2017

Time: 9:00 A.M. – 11:00 A.M.

Location: JSNN Auditorium

2907 E. Gate City Blvd., Greensboro, NC 27401

Title: “Bio-Mimetic Multimodal Nanostructured Surfaces Fabricated with Self-Assembling Biopolymer and Its Applications.”


The goal of my dissertation research is to determine the mechanisms that underlie the self-assembly of chitin nanofibers, define the microscale and nanoscale processes that control organization of chitin, and determine how nanoscale chitin organization impacts higher order self-assembly. Long-range goals of this project are to utilize these foundational mechanisms to control and determine chitin and its deacetylated form chitosan self-assembly. The deeper understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of chitin/chitiosan self-organziation will be essential for the future design of novel biomaterials with nano-structured surfaces (NSS) in-situ and to analyse the process of nanobio-metallization on the fabricated surface, based on the alignment of the polymer. Fabricated biopolymer surfaces and material will be used for biomedical roles such as tissue engineering and even in biodegradable “green” material for bioremediation, electronics and nano-biosensing platform for detection and diagnosis.

I developed a method for extracting and purifying chitin in-situ from a whole arthropod cuticle and used this technique to characterize the nanoscale and microscale diversity of insect cuticles.  This technique also provide a means of generating an extremely pure chitin template which served as the substrate for the development of biomimetic biopolymer nanostructured surfaces that facilitated the growth and migration of mammalian tissue culture cells.  This information provides insight into the mechanisms that are essential for in-vitro nanoscale manipulation of chitin in hydrogels and other synthetic biomaterials. I also discovered a new property of purified chitin and chitosan materials – the self-assembly of silver nanoparticles and silver nanowires.  Using this property I have developed a low cost, “green’ method for the synthesis of Ag-organic composites/devises, which have great promise in biosensor and biomedical application.