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Jianjun Wei

Jianjun Wei

Jianjun Wei, Ph.D.

About Professor Wei

Curriculum Vitae

PDF Version, September 2020


Dr. Jianjun Wei is Professor of Nanoscience at the Joint school of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering (JSNN), the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG). Dr. Wei joined JSNN/UNCG in 2013 as an Associate Professor of Nanosciece through 2020. Dr. Wei’s research at JSNN has been supported by grants from NSF, NIH, NCBC, DOD and NC state funding. Prior to joining JSNN, he had worked in CFD Research Corporation in Huntsville, AL, from 2006 to 2013, and led as a Principal Scientist (PI and co-PI) for a number of BAA, SBIR/STTR Phase I, II, and III US government contracts, primarily through NIH, NASA and DOD research grants. He obtained his Ph.D. in chemistry in 2004 at the University of Pittsburgh, followed with one year postdoctoral fellowship at the same university. Dr. Wei was a lecture and researcher at Shanghai University during 1995-2000 and graduated with degrees of M.S. in 1995 and BS in 1992 in Applied Chemistry from East China University of Science and Technology, Shanghai, China.


Dr. Wei’s research is based in convergence of nanomaterials, nanoscience & biology, with a particular emphasis on nanoscale reactions under electrical, optical and/or magnetic fields, and applications in bioanalysis, biosensors, biomedicine, electro/catalysis and energy storage/conversion. Both fundamentals of structure-correlated electron/energy transfer, electrocatalysis and nanoscale plasmonics with a motivating philosophy of exploiting synergies between functional systems and nanoscale materials or structures.

Dr. Wei’s Research Team


  • Bhawna Bagra (PhD, fall 2016-present): SERS and SPR biosensing
  • Kokougan Allado Yawovi, (fall 2016-present): Energy conversion and storage
  • Anitha Jayapalan, (PhD, fall 2016-present): Nanomaterials and biomedical applications
  • Ziyu Yin (PhD, fall 2017-present): interfacial electron transfer and applications
  • Frank Tukur (fall 2018-present): Nanoplasmonics
  • Mengxin Liu (fall 2018-present): Nanomaterials for energy.
  • Mahsa Azami (fall 2019-present: Multifuntional nanoparticles
  • Xinping Zeng (2018-present): visiting scholar, electrochemical biosensors

JSNN Alumni

  • Durga M. Arvapalli (PhD, 2015-2020), Current position: Scientist at BioSkryb, Inc.
  • Zuowei Ji (PhD, 2016-2020), Current position: Post-doctorial associate at FDA
  • Alex Sheardy (PhD, 2015-2020),
  • Harish Chevva (PhD, 2015-2019) Current position: Materials scientist at JUUL Labs Inc.
  • Wendy Zhang (PhD, 2015-2019) Current position: Post-doctorial associate at University of Arizona
  • Taylor Mabe (PhD, 2014-2018). Current Position: CEO & President of 3iNanotech Inc.
  • Zheng Zeng (PhD, 2014-2017, postdoc 2018): Current position: Associate Professor at Central South University, Changsha, China.
  • Yiyang Liu (PhD, 2014-2017), current position: Assistant Professor in chemistry at Zhenzhou University, Henan, China.
  • Alex Aboagye (PhD in Nanoengineering, 2014, Co-advisor)
  • Yingying Xu (fall 2014, visiting PhD student from Xi’an Jiaotong University, China)
  • Ashutosh Shah (MS in Nanoengineering, 2014-2016, co-advisor)
  • Nilay Doshi (MS Nanoscience, 2013-2014)
  • Shuayl Alotaibi (MS in Nanoscience, spring 2016)

Honors & Awards

2018    Nomination of UNCG Research Excellence

2013    NASA Technical Innovation Brief Award: LEW-18967-1

2008    The US DOD SBIR Achievement Award (DoD SBIR Phase II)

2003-4  Andrew Mellon Predoctoral fellowship, University of Pittsburgh

2003    Travel Grant Award from Electrochemical Society for the 204th National Meeting, Orlando, FL

2002   Wallace Prize; Outstanding Poster Presentation, Dept. of Chemistry and Industrial Committee, University of Pittsburgh


Research articles

  1. Ji, Z. Yin, Z. Jia, J. Wei,* Carbon Nanodots Derived from Urea and Citric Acid in Living Cells: Cellular uptake and antioxidation effect, Langmuir, 2020, 36 (29), 8632–8640.
  2. Bagra, T. Mabe, F. Tukur, J. Wei*, A plasmonic nanoledge array sensor for detection of anti-insulin antibody of type 1 diabetes biomarker, Nanotechnology, 2020, 31, 32.
  3. Sheardy, D. M. Arvapalli, J. Wei*, Novel microwave synthesis of near-metallic copper sulfide nanodiscs with size control: experimental and DFT studies of charge carrier density, Nanoscale Adv., 2020, 2 (3), 1054-1058.
  4. Sheardy, D. M. Arvapalli, J. Wei*, Experimental and time-dependent density functional theory modeling studies on the optical properties of carbon nanodots, J. Phys. Chem. C, 2020, 124 (8), 4684-4692.
  5. Ji, D. M. Arvapalli, W. Zhang, A. Sheardy, J. Wei*, Nitrogen and sulfur co-doped carbon nanodots in living EA.hy926 and A549 cells: oxidative stress effect and mitochondria targeting, J. Mater. Sci. 2020, DOI: 10.1007/s10853-020-04419-7.
  6. M. Arvapalli, A. Sheardy, K. Alapati, K. Allado, J. Wei*, High Quantum Yield Fluorescent Carbon Nanodots for Detection of Fe(III) Ions and Electrochemical Study of Quenching Mechanism, Talanta, 2020, 209, 120538. DOI: 10.1016/j.talanta.2019.120538. (IF: 4.916)
  7. Bagra, W. Zhang, Z. Zeng, T. Mabe, J. Wei*, Plasmon Enhanced Fluorescence of Carbon Nanodots in Nanoslit Cavities, Langmuir, 2019, 35 (27), 8903-8909
  8. Liu, Z. Zeng, R. Sharma, S. Gbewonyo, K. Allado, L. Zhang,* J. Wei,* A bi-functional configuration for a metal-oxide film supercapacitor, J. Power Sources. 2019, 409 (1), 1-5.
  9. Zeng, W. Zhang, Z. Ji, Z. Yin, J. Wei,* Magnetically-enhanced electron transfer from immobilized galvinoxyl radicals, Electrochem. Comm. 2019, 99, 36-40.
  10. Harish, R. Chandran, D. LaJeunesse*, J. Wei*, A solid-state growth of Ag nanowires and analysis of self-growing process on a bio-polymer chitosan film, New J. Chem., 2019, 42, 3529-3535.
  11. Ji, A. Sheardy, Z. Zeng, W. Zhang, H. Chevva, K. Allado, Z. Yin, J. Wei*, Tuning the Functional Groups on the Carbon Nanodots and Antioxidant Capability Studies, Molecules 2019, 24(1), 152.
  12. Zeng, T. Mabe, W. Zhang, B. Bagra, Z. Ji, Z. Yin, K. Allado, J. Wei*, Plasmon-exciton coupling in photosystem I based biohybrid photoelectrochemical cells, ACS Appl. Bio. Mater. 2018, 1(3), 802-807.
  13. Zhang, J. Chavez, Z. Zeng, B. Bloom, A. Sheardy, Z. Ji, Z. Yin, D. H. Waldeck, Z. Jia, J. Wei,* Antioxidant capacity of Nitrogen, Sulfur co-doped carbon nanodots, ACS Appl. Nano Mater., 2018, 1(6) 2699-2708.
  14. Lu, H. Yue, Y. Xing*, J. Wei*, Z. Zeng, R. Li, W. Wu, Low-temperature co-purification of NOx and Hg0 from simulated flue gas by CexZryMnzO2/r-Al2O3: the performance and its mechanism, Environ. Sci. Pollut. Res. 2018, 25 (21) 20575-20590.
  15. Aboagye, Y. Liu, J. Ryan, J. Wei,* L. Zhang,* Hierarchical Carbon Composite Nanofibrous Electrode Material for High-Performance Aqueous Supercapacitors. Materials Chemistry and Physics. 2018, 214, 557-563.
  16. Zeng, J. Wei,* Y. Liu, W. Zhang, T. Mabe, Magnetoreception of photoactivated cryptochrome 1 in electrochemistry and electron transfer, ACS Omega, 2018, 3 (5), 4752-4759.
  17. Liu1, Z. Zeng1, B. Bloom, D. Waldeck, J. Wei,* Stable Low-current Electrodeposition of α-MnO2 on Super-aligned Electrospun Carbon Nanofibers for High-performance Energy Storage, Small 2018, 14(3) 201703237.
  18. Chandran,1 H. Chevva,1 Z. Zeng, Y. Liu, W. Zhang, J. Wei,* D. LaJeunesse,* Solid State Synthesis of Silver Nanowires by Biopolymer Thin Films, Materials Today-Nano, 2018, 1, 22-28.
  19. Mabe, Z. Zeng, B. Bagra, J. Ryan, J. Wei,* Surface Plasmon Resonance of A Bimetallic Nanostructured Film for Enhanced Optical Sensitivity, ChemistrySelect. 2018, 3, 3018-3023.
  20. Wu, Z. Zeng, P. Lu*, Y. Xing, J. Wei, H. Yue, R. Li, Simultaneous oxidation of Hg0 and NH3-SCR of NO by nanophase CexZryMnzO2 at low temperature: the interaction and mechanism, Environ. Sci. Pollut. Res., 2018, DOI: 10.1007/s11356-018-1657-3.
  21. Zeng, T. Zhang, Y. Liu, W. Zhang, Z. Yin, Z. Ji, J. Wei,* Magnetic Field Enhanced 4-electron Pathway of Well-aligned Co3O4/ECNFs in the Oxygen Reduction Reaction, ChemSusChem. 2018, 11, 580-588.
  22. D. Covell,1 Z. Zeng1, T. Mabe, J. Wei, A. Adamson, D. LaJeunesse,* Alternative SiO2 surface energies direct MCDK epithelial behavior, ACS Biomater. Sci. Eng., 2017, 3(12) 3307-3317.
  23. Zeng, W. Zhang, Y. Liu, P. Lu, J. Wei,* Uniformly electrodeposited α-MnO2 film on super-aligned electrospun carbon nanofibers as a bifunctional catalyst for the oxygen reduction reaction, Electrochimica Acta, 2017, 256, 232-240.
  24. Zhang1, Z. Zeng1, J. Wei,* Electrochemical Study of DPPH Radical Scavenging for Evaluating the Antioxidant Capacity of Carbon Nanodots, J. Phys. Chem. C. 2017, 121 (34), 18635–18642.
  25. Zeng1, W. Zhang1, D. Arvapalli, B. Bloom, A. Sheardy, T. Mabe, Y. Liu, Z. Ji, H. Chevva, D. Waldeck, J. Wei,* A Fluorescence-Electrochemical Study of Carbon Nanodots (CNDs) for Bio- and Photoelectronic Application and Energy Gap Investigation, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 2017, 19, 20101-20109.
  26. Zeng1, X. Shi1, T. Mabe1, S. Christie, G. Gilmore, A. Smith, J. Wei,* Protein Trapping in Plasmonic Nanoslit and Nanoledge Cavities: The Behavior and Sensing, Analytical Chemistry, 2017, 89 (10), 5221–5229.
  27. Kaye1, Z. Zeng1, M. Sanders, K. Chittur, P. Koelle, R. Lindquist, U. Manne, Y. Lin, J. Wei,* Label Free Detection of DNA Hybridization with A Compact LSPR-based Fiber-Optic Sensor, Analyst, 2017, 142, 1974-1981.
  28. Zeng1, Y. Liu1, W. Zhang, H. Chevva, J. Wei,* Improved Supercapacitor Performance of MnO2-Electrospun Carbon Nanofibers Electrodes by mT Magnetic Field, J. Power Sources, 2017, 358, 22-28.
  29. Chevva, R. Chandran, D. LaJeunesse, J. Wei,* Silver Nanowires (AgNWs) Growth in-situ on Chitosan Polymer Matrix Film for SERS Application, IEEE Xplore. 2017, pp. 885-889
  30. Xu, Z. Li,* F. Zhang, X. Zhuang,* Z. Zeng, J. Wei,* New nitrogen-rich azo-bridged porphyrin conjugated microporous networks for high performance of gas capture and storage, RSC Advances, 2016, 6 (36), 30048-30055.
  31. Lu, W. Wen, Y. Huang, Z. Zeng, J. Wei,* New insight into advection of organic contaminate plume at drain outlet areas, Environmental Nanotechnology, Monitoring & Management, 2016, 6, 76-82.
  32. Zeng, Y. Liu, J. Wei*, Recent advances in surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS): finite difference time domain (FDTD) method for SERS and sensing applications. Trend in Analytical Chemistry. 2016, 75, 162–173.
  33. Zeng, M.N. Mendis, D.H. Waldeck, J. Wei*, A semi-analytical decomposition analysis of surface plasmon generation and the optimal nanoledge plasmonic device, RSC Advances, 2016, 6, 17196 – 17203.
  34. Liu, Z. Zeng, J. Wei*, Frontiers in nano-architectured carbon–metal oxide electrodes for supercapacitance energy storage, Front. Nanosci. Nanotech, 2016, 2, 78-85.
  35. Liu, T. D. Dolidze, S. Singhal, D. E. Khoshtariya, J. Wei*, New evidence for a quasi-simultaneous proton-coupled two-electron transfer and direct wiring for glucose oxidase captured by the carbon nanotube-polymer matrix. J. Phys. Chem. C. 2015, 119 (27), 14900–14910.
  36. Sanders, Y. Lin*, J. Wei*, T. Bono, R. Lindquist, An enhanced LSPR fiber-optic nanoprobe for ultrasensitive detection of protein biomarkers, Biosens. Bioelectron, 2014, 61, 95-101.

Note: Listed as ScienceDirect’s 10 most downloaded Chemistry articles published by the end of 2015.

  1. Wei*, M. Kofke, S. Singhal, D.H. Waldeck, A study of localized surface plasmon resonance nanoslit array and applications for chip-based protein detection, JSM Nanotech. and Nanomed., 2014, 2(2): 1024.
  2. Li*, J. Zhang, et al and J. Wei*, A Nanocomposite of copper (II) functionalized graphene and application for sensing sulfurated organophosphorus pesticides, New Journal of Chemistry, 2013, 37 (12), 3956 – 3963.



  1. Mabe, J. Ryan, J. Wei,* “Functional Thin Films and Nanostructures for Sensors”, for Handbook of Nanoparticles and Architectural Nanostructured Materials, Editor-in-Chief: Ahmed Barhoum, Elsevier Publisher, 2018, In Press.
  2. Liu, Z. Zeng, J. Wei,* “Nano-architectured Carbon-metal Oxide Electrodes for Supercapacitance Energy Storage” for Handbook of Nanoparticles and Architectural Nanostructured Materials, Editor-in-Chief: Ahmed Barhoum, Elsevier Publisher, 2018, In Press.
  3. J. Wei,* Z. Zeng, Y. Lin “A LSPR-Coupled Fiber-Optic Nanoprobe for the Detection of Protein Biomarkers”, Chapter 1 in Methods in Molecular Biology Series 1571, Biosensors and Biodetection 2017: Optical-based Detectors Volume 1: Methods and Protocols, 2nd Edt.  Editors: Avraham Rasooly and  Ben Prickril, Humana Press (Springer Copyright), Totowa, NJ, US, ISBN13: 9781493968466, 2017.

Patents & IP Disclosures

  1. US Application #: 15/639,891, 2018. “Nanoplasmonic devices and applications thereof” (full patent), US Patent pub.: 2018/0003632, Inventor: Wei
  2. US Application: 2017/62/478,773, “Separator-Free Energy Storage Devices and Methods”, filed on March 30, 2017, EFS ID: 28785044, Inventor: Wei, Y. Liu, Z. Zeng
  3. US 9509009, approved on 11/29/2016, Enzyme catalyzed oxidation of hydrocarbons, Inventors: Y. Ulyanova, S. Minteer, S. Singhal, V. Svoboda, Wei. Issued 11/29/2016
  4. UNCG Disclosure #D15-0018, Morphology controllable deposition of metal oxide for enhanced energy storage, June 15, 2015
  5. US 8703022, 04/22/2014. Electrically conductive ink and uses thereof. Inventors: V. Svoboda, Wei, S. Singhal
  6. US 8685286, 04/02/2014. Electrically conductive ink and uses thereof. Inventors: V. Svoboda, Wei, S. Singhal
  7. US 8158409, 04/17/2012 Nanoscale Surface Plasmonics Sensors with Nanofluidic Control, Inventors: J. Wei, S. Singhal, D. H. Waldeck, M. Kofke
  8. 20080213631: Hybrid Power Strip, U.S. Patent Application No. 60/858,590
  9. 20090120843: Filtration Apparatus and Method, US Patent Application No.: 11/930,819

Research Achievements