Bioengineering

KC Huang, PhD.

Appointments
Assistant Professor of Bioengineering






Contact
kchuang@stanford.edu

Research Interests
My laboratory employs diverse interdisciplinary methods of inquiry to understand the relationships among cell shape detection, determination, and maintenance in bacteria. Cell shape plays a critical role in regulating many physiological functions, yet little is known about how the wide variety of cell shapes are determined and maintained. Inside the cell, many proteins organize and segregate, but how they detect and respond to the cellular morphology to end up at the right place at the right time is also largely mysterious. We utilize a combination of analytical, computational, and experimental approaches to probe physical mechanisms of shape-related self-organization in protein networks, membranes, and the cell wall. Current topics of interest are (i) cell-wall biosynthesis, (ii) the regulation and mechanics of cell division, (iii) membrane organization, and (iv) membrane-mediated protein interactions. Ultimately, the manipulation of cell shape may provide a direct tool for engineering complex cellular behaviors.

Interested students and postdocs are encouraged to contact me at kchuang@stanford.edu.

Honors & Awards

NIH K25 Quantitative Research Career Development Award, (2005-2010).

Helen Hay Whitney Fellowship, (2005-2008).

Pan-American Studies Institute Fellowship, Meeting on Nano and Biotechnology, Barilloche, Argentina. (2006).

Cold Spring Harbor Fellowship, Advanced Bacterial Genetics course (2004).

NSF Graduate Research Fellowship (1999-2002).

MIT Robert Stockbarger Graduate Research Fellowship (1999-2001).

Churchill Scholarship, University of Cambridge (1998-1999).

Goldwater Academic Scholarship (1996-1998).

Caltech Academic Merit Scholarship (1996-1998).

H. J. Ryser Scholarship, California Institute of Technology, Mathematics Department Top Undergraduate (1996-1997).


Professional Education

Ph.D., Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1999-2004
M.Phil, Physics, Cambridge University, 1998-1999
B.S. with Honors, Physics and Mathematics, California Institute of Technology, 1994–1998

Representative Publications

  • A Varma, KC Huang, and KD Young, "The Min system as a general cell-geometry detection mechanism: patterns of Min oscillations respond to changes in cell shape in aberrantly shaped Escherichia coli," in press, J. Bacteriol.
  • T Ursell, KC Huang, E Peterson, and R Phillips, "Cooperative gating and spatial organization of membrane proteins through elastic interactions," PLoS Comp. Biol. 3 e81 (2007). pdf
  • KC Huang, R Mukhopadhyay, and NS Wingreen, "A curvature-mediated mechanism for localization of lipids to bacterial poles," PLoS Comp. Biol. 2 1357 (2006). pdf
  • KC Huang, T Wang, and JD Joannopoulos, "Control of melting using nanoscale coatings," Proc. Minerals, Metals, and Materials Soc. (2007).
  • KC Huang, T Wang, and JD Joannopoulos, "Nanoscale properties of melting at the surface of semiconductors," Phys. Rev. B 72 195314 (2005). Selected for November 21, 2005 issue of Virtual Journal of Nanoscale Science & Technology. pdf
  • X Jiang, Y Zhang, S Feng, KC Huang, Y Yi, and JD Joannopoulos, "Photonic Band-Gaps and Localization in the Thue-Morse Structures," Appl. Phys. Lett. 86 201110 (2005).Selected for May 23, 2005 issue of Virtual Journal of Nanoscale Science & Technology. pdf
  • KC Huang, T Wang, and JD Joannopoulos, "Superheating and Induced Melting at Semiconductor Interfaces," Phys. Rev. Lett. 94 175702 (2005). pdf
  • KC Huang and NS Wingreen, "Min oscillations in round bacteria," Phys. Bio. 1 229 (2004). pdf
  • RV Kulkarni, KC Huang, M Kloster, and NS Wingreen, "Pattern Formation within Escherichia coli: Diffusion, Membrane Attachment, and Self-Interaction of MinD Molecules," Phys. Rev. Lett. 93 228103 (2004). Selected for December 1, 2004 issue of Virtual Journal of Biological Physics. pdf
  • KC Huang, ML Povinelli, and JD Joannopoulos, "Negative effective permeability in polaritonic photonic crystals," Appl. Phys. Lett. 85 543 (2004). Selected for August 9, 2004 issue of Virtual Journal of Nanoscale Science & Technology. pdf
  • KC Huang, E Lidorikis, X Jiang, JD Joannopoulos, KA Nelson, P Bienstman, and S Fan, "The nature of lossy Bloch states in polaritonic photonic crystals," Phys. Rev. B 69 195111 (2004). Selected for June 7, 2004 issue of Virtual Journal of Nanoscale Science & Technology. pdf
  • KC Huang, Y Meir, and NS Wingreen, "Dynamic structures in Escherichia coli: Spontaneous formation of MinE rings and MinD polar zones," Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. USA 100 12724 (2003). Selected for November 15, 2003 issue of Virtual Journal of Biological Physics. pdf
  • KC Huang, P Bienstman, JD Joannopoulos, KA Nelson, and S Fan, "Phonon-polariton excitations in photonic crystals," Phys. Rev. B 68 075209 (2003). Selected for September 8, 2003 issue of Virtual Journal of Nanoscale Science & Technology. pdf
  • KC Huang, P Bienstman, JD Joannopoulos, KA Nelson, and S Fan, "Field Expulsion and Reconfiguration in Polaritonic Photonic Crystals," Phys. Rev. Lett. 90 196402 (2003). Selected for May 26, 2003 issue of Virtual Journal of Nanoscale Science & Technology. pdf
  • KC Huang, RJ Needs, and G Rajagopal, "Comment on "Quantum Monte Carlo study of the dipole moment of CO" [J. Chem. Phys. 110, 11700 (1999)]," J. Chem. Phys. 112 4419 (2000). pdf

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