News about ISBET



  • September 23, 2014, Gaurav Jain successfully defends his PhD thesis on "Cell migration on opposity rigidity-protein gradients: single cell and co-culture studies". Gaurav is an SBES student working with Padma Rajagopalan.
  • September 1, 2014, Padma Rajagopalan joins the Editorial Board of ACS Biomaterials Science and Engineering.
  • August 25, 2014, Allison Tegge receives an F32 fellowship from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. She will collaborate with ISBET faculty Murali and Rajagopalan to develop computational models of signaling between liver cells exposed to environmental chemicals.
  • July 29, 2014, Rebekah Less, a first-year Ph.D. student in the Virginia Tech-Wake Forest University School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences, has been awarded a Science, Mathematics, and Research for Transformation (SMART) graduate fellowship from the Department of Defense. Less was selected for the fellowship based on her work in integrating liver and gastrointestinal tissues.
  • July 2014, NSF's Biomaterials Division awards Padma Rajagopalan a $390,000, three-year grant to study transitional engineered liver tissues.
  • May 7, 2014, Padma Rajagopalan receives the Dean's Award for Excellence in Research.
  • April 25, 2014, The Department of Computer Science selects Chris Poirel as the recipient of the Outstanding Research by a PhD Student award for 2013-2014. Chris completed his Ph.D. thesis under the guidance of T. M. Murali in August 2013. In his thesis, Chris developed novel graph algorithms to connect top-down and bottom-up approaches in systems biology.


  • December 20, 2013, The Virginia Tech Graduate School selects Chris Poirel as the student speaker at its Fall 2013 Graduate Student Commencement ceremonies.
  • December 14, 2013, The American Society of Cell Biology created a video on computational cell biology research at Virginia Tech including the collaboration of ISBET faculty T. M. Murali and Jean Peccoud with John Tyson.
  • November 11, 2013, T. M. Murali receives the ACM Distinguished Scientist award.
  • August 30, 2013, Chris Poirel defends his Ph.D. research on Bridging Methodological Gaps in Network-Based Systems Biology". Chris will be joining RedOwl Analytics as a Senior Data Scientist. Chris was a student in T. M. Murali's group.
  • September 5-6, 2013, Rajagopalan and Murali organize Workshop on Computational Toxicology.
  • August 1, 2013, Dr. Shiv Kale joins ISBET. He has been a VBI independence fellow since 2011. He focuses on characterizing novel human-fungal molecular interactions during invasive infections.
  • July 25, 2013, Padma Rajagopalan invited to serve on National Institutes of Health study section on biomaterials.


  • October 7, 2012 Ahsanur Rahman's paper on Reverse Engineering Molecular Hypegraphs wins the Best Paper Award at the ACM conference on Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, and Biomedicine, 2012. Ahsanur is a Computer Science Ph.D. student in T. M. Murali's group.
  • August 2012, Adam Larkin defends his PhD thesis on "The design of three dimensional multicellular liver models using detachable, nanoscale polyelectrolyte multilayers". Adam is a Chemical Engineering Ph.D. student in Padma Rajagopalan's group. He is joining Celanese Corporation as a Research Engineer.
  • July 7, 2012, Jean Peccoud and colleagues receive a $1,000,000 INSPIRE award from the NSF to model and optimize DNA manufacturing processes.
  • April 2012, Cigdem Arca defends her Master's thesis on "The design of polyelectrolyte multilayers using galactosylated chitosan". Cigdem is a Chemical Engineering student in Padma Rajagopalan's group.
  • April 23, 2012, T. M. Murali gives a highlight presentation at RECOMB 2012 on "Network-Based Prediction and Analysis of HIV Dependency Factors".
  • March 26, 2012, Naren Ramakrishnan named the Thomas L. Phillips Professor of Engineering.
  • March 26, 2012, Padma Rajagopalan receives the Robert H. Hord Jr. Chemical Engineering Fellowship.
  • March 1, 2012, Computer, the flagship journal of the IEEE Computer Society, publishes a special issue on Computationally Driven Experimental Biology guest edited by T. M. Murali.
  • February 6, 2012, the Virginia Tech Graduate School selects the Computational Tissue Engineering (CTE) interdisciplinary graduate education program (IGEP) for funding. ISBET director Padma Rajagopalan will direct this IGEP. Several ISBET faculty are affiliated with CTE. The goal of the CTE IGEP is to train a new generation of scientists at the nexus of tissue engineering, systems biology, and computational science.
  • January 2, 2012, Renee Prater is the new Associate Dean for Medical Education at the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine.
  • January 1, 2012, Applications are open for an undergraduate summer research institute on Computationally-Driven Experimental Biology in Engineered Tissues. The application deadline is February 6, 2012.
  • January 1, 2012, Prof. Scott Verbridge joins ISBET. He is a primary faculty member in the Virginia Tech-Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences. Prof. Verbridge is an expert on engineering the cancer microenvironment.


  • September 12, 2011, Chris Lasher defends his Ph.D. in Genetics, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology on "Discovering contextual connections between biological processes using high-throughput data". ISBET director Rajagopalan and co-director Murali co-advised Lasher.
  • August 28, 2011, Jean Peccoud gives the opening keynote lecture on "Learning DNA as a Second Language" at the 12th International Conference on Systems Biology held at Heidelberg/Mannheim, Germany.
  • July 25, 2011, Padma Rajagopalan's research is featured in an article titled The Quest for an Artificial Liver in the Indian newspaper The Telgraph.
  • June 1, 2011, NSF's Advances in Bioinformatics program awards ISBET researchers T. M. Murali, Padma Rajagopalan, and Rich Helm a $1.13M grant to study intercellular signaling in liver mimics. The investigators will use the 3-D liver mimic developed by Rajagopalan to understand how different cell types within the mimic communicate with each other. The project will analyze transcriptional measurements to prioritize proteomic experiments. It will combine both types of data to construct an integrated model of intercellular signaling in liver mimics.
  • May 1, 2011, ISBET researchers T. M. Murali and Jean Peccoud and collaborator John Tyson receive $2.13M grant from NIGMS to connect top-down and bottom-up models in systems biology. This project will fuse representations of the budding yeast cell cycle are constructed from large-scale high-throughput datasets with ODE-based models and simulation of the cell cycle protein regulatory network.
  • May 1, 2011, ISBET researchers Padma Rajagopalan, T. M. Murali, and collaborator Marion Ehrich receive $750,000 STAR grant from the EPA. The project will develop systems biology approaches to unearth toxicity pathways in bioengineered livers.