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Yong Woo Lee

Associate Professor
  • Biomedical Engineering Graduate Chair
Lee Yong 2
337 Kelly Hall
325 Stanger St.
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Research Areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Neuroengineering
  • Nanobioengineering
  • Translational cancer research

Research Interests

  • Pathophysiological mechanisms of brain injury
  • Development of in vitro 3D brain tissue models
  • Effective delivery of therapeutics across the blood-brain barrier
  • Nanomaterials-mediated targeted drug delivery for cancer treatments


  • University of Kentucky College of Medicine: Postdoctoral Scholar, Surgery/Neurosurgery, 2001 
  • Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST): Ph.D., Biological Sciences, 1997 
  • Seoul National University: B.S., Applied Biology and Chemistry, 1986

Awards, Honors, and Service

  • Leader in Teaching Award, Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics, College of Engineering, Virginia Tech: 2016
  • Certificate of Teaching Excellence Award, College of Engineering, Virginia Tech: 2016
  • Leader in Scholarship Award, Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics, College of Engineering, Virginia Tech: 2015
  • Excellence in Access and Inclusion Award, Virginia Tech Office of Diversity and Inclusion / Services for Students with Disabilities: 2014
  • Invitation Grant Award for Prestigious Foreign Scholar, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea (South): 2013
  • Excellence in Teaching Award in Recognition of Extraordinary Performance in Teaching, College of Engineering, Virginia Tech: 2012
  • The Virginia Governor’s School Appreciation Award, Commonwealth of Virginia: 2007

Recent Publications

Bittleman KR, Dong S, Roman M, Lee YW. Folic acid-conjugated cellulose nanocrystals show high folate-receptor binding affinity and uptake by KB and breast cancer cells. ACS Omega. 2018 (October);3:13952-13959. [PMID: 30411055]

Cho HJ, Lee WH, Hwang OMH, Sonntag WE, Lee YW. Role of NADPH oxidase in radiation-induced pro-oxidative and pro-inflammatory pathways in mouse brain. International Journal of Radiation Biology. 2017 (September);93:1257-1266 [PMID: 28880721]

Hirani A, Grover A, Lee YW, Pathak Y, Sutariya V. Triamcinolone acetonide nanoparticles incorporated in thermoreversible gels for age-related macular degeneration. Pharmaceutical Development and Technology. 2016 (February);21:61-67.  [PMID: 25259682].

Bonakdar M, Wasson E, Lee YW, Davalos RV. Electroporation of brain endothelial cells on chip toward permeabilizing the blood-brain barrier. Biophysical Journal. 2016 (January 19);110:503-513. [PMID: 26789772]

Colacino KR, Arena CB, Dong S, Roman M, Davalos RV, Lee YW. Folate conjugated cellulose nanocrystals potentiate irreversible electroporation-induced cytotoxicity for the selective treatment of cancer cells. Technology in Cancer Research & Treatment. 2015 (December);14:757-766.  [PMID: 24750004]

Sano MB, Arena CB, Bittleman K, DeWitt MR, Cho HJ, Szot CC, Saur D, Cissell JM, Robertson J, Lee YW, Davalos RV. Bursts of bipolar microsecond pulses inhibit tumor growth. Scientific Reports. 2015 (October 13);5:14999. [PMID: 26459930]

Elias R, Sullivan JB, Lee YW, White SW. Exploring the potential role of inflammation as an etiological process in ASD. Review Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 2015 (June 6);2:273-286.

Ahn JH, Lee YW, Ahn SK, Lee M. Oncogenic BRAF inhibitor UAI-201 induces cell cycle arrest and autophagy in BRAF mutant glioma cells. Life Sciences. 2014 (May 28);104:38-46  [PMID: 24721513]

Dong S (Co-first author), Cho HJ (Co-first author), Lee YW, Roman M. Synthesis and cellular uptake of folic acid-conjugated cellulose nanocrystals for cancer targeting. Biomacromolecules. 2014 (May 12);15:1560-1567  [PMID: 24716601]

Hirani A, Lee YW, Pathak Y, Sutariya V. Efficacy of loteprednol etabonate drug delivery system in suppression of in vitro retinal pigment epithelium activation. Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology. 2014;2:208-216.