"At the intersection of materials science, biology and engineering, our laboratory is developing surfaces that mimic the cellular environment to study cell fate determination and discover novel biomaterials for regenerative therapies."

Kristopher A. Kilian

Kristopher Kilian
Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering

Office 202 Materials Science and Engineering Building

Telephone 217-244-2142 Fax 217-333-2736

Mail Address Department of Materials Science and Engineering
1304 W. Green St., Urbana, IL 61801

kakilian@illinois.edu    Kilian research group page

  • Profile
  • Research
  • Publications
  • Awards

Profile

Professor Kristopher Kilian received B.S. and M.S. degrees in Chemistry from the University of Washington in 1999 and 2003 respectively. He worked at Rosetta Inpharmatics/Merck & Co. in the Methods Development group from 2000-2004 before travelling to Sydney, Australia to do his PhD with Justin Gooding at the University of New South Wales. His doctoral research involved the development of nanostructured porous-silicon based photonic crystals and their chemical modification for optical biosensors and biomaterials. In 2007, he joined the laboratory of Milan Mrksich at the University of Chicago as a NIH postdoctoral fellow to investigate new methods for directing the differentiation of stem cells. Kris joined the faculty of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as Assistant Professor of Materials Science and Engineering in 2011.

Research

Our group’s broad aim is to develop innovative approaches to stem cell and tissue engineering research. Coming from a biomaterials perspective, we employ surface chemistry techniques, nano-/micro- fabrication, and synthetic and natural materials to design model systems that mimic the structure and composition of the cell and tissue microenvironment towards elucidating biological function. The materials and systems developed in the group serve as novel tools for fundamental biological research and for the fabrication of clinically relevant biomaterials.

One of our primary research efforts is understanding the chemical, physical and biological cues in the stem cell microenvironment that promote “stemness” or direct specific differentiation programs. This is important because understanding the signals that guide cells to form and maintain tissues during normal and pathological processes is critical for the design of materials for regenerative therapies. Some general examples of our approach to exploring the cell and tissue microenvironment are as follows:

  • The chemical microenvironment – Tailored substrates to explore the importance of extracellular matrix composition on cell fate.
  • The physical microenvironment – Materials for investigating cell and tissue response to geometry, micro- and nano-topography, and mechanical properties.
  • The biological microenvironment – New strategies to study and manipulate biological signaling (i.e. paracrine and juxtacrine signaling) involved in regulating tissue morphogenesis and homeostasis.

Research in the group is highly interdisciplinary and is driven by both biological hypothesis and technology development. Students in the lab gain practical experience in organic synthesis, surface chemistry and characterization, soft lithography, nanomaterial synthesis, and cell and molecular biology techniques.

Publications

Amr A. Abdeen, Jared B. Weiss, Junmin Lee, and Kristopher A. Kilian, Matrix composition and mechanics directs pro-angiogenic signaling from mesenchymal stem cells, Tissue Engineering, Part A, 2014, In Press

Junmin Lee, Amr A. Abdeen, Tiffany H. Huang, and Kristopher A. Kilian, Controlling cell geometry on substrates of variable stiffness can tune the degree of osteogenesis in human mesenchymal stem cells, Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, 2014, In Press

Junmin Lee, Amr A. Abdeen, Douglas Zhang, and Kristopher A. Kilian, Directing stem cell fate on hydrogel substrates by controlling cell geometry, matrix mechanics and adhesion ligand composition, Biomaterials, 2013, 34, 8140-8148 - available online http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2013.07.074

Douglas Zhang and Kristopher A. Kilian, The effect of mesenchymal stem cell shape on the maintenance of multipotency, Biomaterials, 2013, 34, 3962-3969

Kristopher A. Kilian and Milan Mrksich, Directing Stem Cell Fate by Controlling the Affinity and Density of Ligand-Receptor Interactions at the Biomaterials Interface, Angewandte Chemie Int. Ed., 2012, 51(20), 4891-4895

Till Böcking, Kristopher A. Kilian, Peter J. Reece, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal and J. Justin Gooding, Biofunctionalization of free-standing porous silicon films for self-assembly of photonic devices, Soft Matter, 2012, 8, 360-366

Guillaume Le Saux, Astrid Magenau, Krishanthi Gunaratnam, Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, Justin Gooding and Katharina Gaus, Spacing of integrin ligands influences signal transduction in endothelial cells, Biophysical Journal, 2011, 101, 764–773

Bin Guan, Astrid Magenau, Krisopher A. Kilian, Simone Ciampi, Katharina Gaus, Peter J. Reece and J. Justin Gooding, Mesoporous silicon photonic crystal microparticles: towards single-cell optical biosensors, Faraday Discussions, 2011, 149, 301-317

Kristopher A. Kilian, Branimir Bugarija, Bruce T. Lahn and Milan Mrksich, Geometric cues for directing the differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2010, 107 (11),  4872-4877

Zachary A. Gurard-Levin, Kristopher A. Kilian, Joohoon Kim, Katinka Bähr, Milan Mrksich, Using Peptide Arrays and Mass Spectrometry to Develop Selective Substrates for Members of the Lysine Deacetylase Family of Enzymes, ACS Chemical Biology, 2010, 5 (9), 863-873

Till Böcking, Kristopher A. Kilian, Peter J. Reece, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal and J. Justin Gooding, Substrate independent assembly of optical structures guided by biomolecular interactions, ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 2010, 2 (11), 3270-3275

Kristopher A. Kilian, Leo M. H. Lai, Astrid Megenau, Sian Cartland, Till Böcking, Katharina Gaus, Nick Di Giorlamo, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Smart tissue culture: in situ monitoring of cellular secretion with nanostructured photonic crystals, Nano Letters, 2009, 9 (5), 2021-2025

Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, and J. Justin Gooding, The importance of surface chemistry in nanostructured materials: lessons from mesoporous silicon photonic biosensors, Chemical Communications, 2009, 630-640

Kristopher A. Kilian, Astrid Magenau, Till Böcking, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Silicon-based mesoporous photonic crystals: towards single cell optical biosensors, Proceedings of the SPIE, 2009, 739703, 1-8

Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, Katharina Gaus, and J. Justin Gooding, Introducing Distinctly Different Chemical Functionalities onto the Internal and External Surfaces of Mesoporous Materials, Angewandte Chemie Int. Ed., 2008, 47(14), 2697-2699.

Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, Leo M. H. Lai, Suhrawardi Ilyas, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Organic Modification of Silicon-based Photonic Materials: The Role of Nanoarchitecture on Optical Behavior, International Journal of Nanotechnology, 2008, 5(2), 170-178

Simone Ciampi, Till Böcking, Kristopher A. Kilian, Jason Harper, J. Justin Gooding, Click-Chemistry in Mesoporous Materials: Functionalization of Porous Silicon Rugate Filters, Langmuir, 2008, 24 (11), 5888–5892

Till Böcking, Kristopher A. Kilian, Katharina Gaus, and J. Justin Gooding, Modifying Porous Silicon with Self-Assembled Monolayers for Biomedical Applications: The influence of surface coverage on stability and biomolecule coupling, Advanced Functional Materials, 2008, 18(23), 3827-3833

Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Peptide Modified Optical Filters for Detecting Protease Activity, ACS Nano, 2007, 1(4), 355-361

Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, Suhrawardi Ilyas, Katharina Gaus, Wendy Jessup, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Forming Antifouling Organic Multilayers on Porous Silicon Rugate Filters towards in vivo/ex vivo Biophotonic Devices, Advanced Functional Materials, 2007, 17(15) , 2884-2890

Simone Ciampi, Till Böcking, Kristopher A. Kilian, Michael James, Jason Harper, J. Justin Gooding, Functionalization of Acetylene-Terminated Monolayers on Si(100) Surfaces: A Click Chemistry Approach, Langmuir, 2007, 23(18), 9320-9329

Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, Suhrawardi Ilyas, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Si-C Linked Oligo(ethylene glycol) Layers in Silicon-based Photonic Crystals: Optimization for Implantable Optical Materials, Biomaterials,  2007, 28(20), 3055-3062

Kristopher A. Kilian, Till Böcking, Suhrawardi Ilyas, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Hybrid lipid bilayers in nanostructured silicon: a biomimetic mesoporous scaffold for optical detection of cholera toxin, Chemical Communications, 2007, 1936-1938

S. Ilyas, T. Böcking, K. Kilian, P.J. Reece, J. Gooding, K. Gaus and M. Gal, Porous silicon based narrow line-width rugate filters, Optical Materials, 2007, 29, 619-622

Till Böcking, Kristopher A. Kilian, Katharina Gaus, and J. Justin Gooding, Single-Step DNA Immobilization on Antifouling Self-Assembled Monolayers Covalently Bound to Silicon (111), Langmuir, 2006, 22(8), 3494-3496

Till Böcking, Kristopher A. Kilian, Tracey Hanley, Suhrawardi Ilyas, Katharina Gaus, Michael Gal, and J. Justin Gooding, Formation of tetra(ethylene oxide) terminated Si-C linked monolayers and their derivatization with glycine: An example of a generic strategy for the immobilization of biomolecules on silicon, Langmuir, 2005, 21, 10522-10529

Michele Cleary, Kristopher Kilian, Yanqun Wang, Jeff Bradshaw, Guy Cavet, Wei Ge, Amit Kulkarni, Patrick J. Paddison, Kenneth Chang, Nihar Sheth, Eric Leproust, Ernest M. Coffey, Julja Burchard, W. Richard McCombie, Peter Linsley and Gregory J. Hannon, Production of Complex Nucleic Acid Libraries Using Highly Parallel in situ Oligonucleotide Synthesis, Nature Methods, 2004, 1(3), 241-248

Thomas  L. Fare, Ernest M. Coffey, Hongyue Dai, Yudong D. He, Deborah A. Kessler,  Kristopher A. Kilian, John E. Koch, Eric LeProust, Matthew J. Marton, Michael R. Meyer, Roland B. Stoughton, George Y. Tokiwa, and Yanqun Wang, Effects of Atmospheric Ozone on Microarray Data Quality, Analytical Chemistry, 2003, 75(17); 4672-4675

Awards
  • Australian Research Council Eureka Prize Finalist for Excellence in Research by an Interdisciplinary Team (2011)
  • Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award, National Institutes of Health (2008)
  • U Committee Prize, University of New South Wales (2009)
  • Cornforth Medal, The Royal Australian Chemical Institute (2008)
  • Poster Prize, The International Conference on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, Brisbane Australia, (2006)
  • The Environmental Management Pre-college Analytical Chemistry Program (EMPAC), University of Washington, (1992)