Botao's project “Electron ptychographic imaging of self-assembling peptide-amphiphile hydrogels” focuses on exploring the application of the electron ptychographic technique to the imaging of order in self-assembling peptide amphiphiles.
Amphiphilic peptide hydrogels have shown great potential for drug delivery and cell scaffolding, but the precise study on localised structure is the precondition for these applications. However, macromolecules like peptides are challenging for conventional electron microscopies because of poor imaging contrast and severe beam damage.
By using the fast-pixelated detector and the reconstruction of the image, electron ptychography is considered to be able to overcome the above challenges to characterise macromolecules. In turn, a better understanding of macromolecular ordering could contribute to better biological applications of peptide hydrogels in cell scaffold and drug delivery.
Botao received his BEng degree in Polymer Materials and Engineering from Beijing University of Chemical Technology in 2017. After that, he moved to University College London for the MSc study in Advanced Materials Science and worked with supramolecular chemistry under the supervision of Dr. Tung Chun Lee. In September 2018, he joined Oxford Materials and started his DPhil project in electron microscopic characterisation on macromolecules, supervised by Prof. Hazel Assender and Prof. Peter Nellist.
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