Chemistry Professor Christy Haynes awarded prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship

Haynes to investigate the biological and ecological impacts of engineered nanomaterials

MINNEAPOLIS (04/05/2018) — University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering Chemistry Professor Christy L. Haynes has been awarded a prestigious 2018 Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship. Appointed on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise, Haynes is one of only 173 scientists, scholars, and artists in the United States and Canada to receive the highly competitive, national fellowship from almost 3,000 applicants.

Haynes is associate department head of the Department of Chemistry and the Elmore H. Northey Professor of Chemistry. She is also associate director of the Center of Sustainable Nanotechnology, and an associate editor of Analytical Chemistry.

She is an internationally recognized leader within the scientific community, and is one of the nation’s most talented analytical chemists. Her training combines laser spectroscopy and nanomaterials characterization with electrochemistry and immunology. She has built a unique research program that addresses questions at the interface of immunology, toxicology, materials science, and chemistry.

Her research group focuses on applications of analytical chemistry in the fields of immunology and toxicology, with much expertise in the area of single cell analysis. Another major focus encompasses studying fundamental properties of cells involved in inflammation. Her group has performed the first ever real-time single blood platelet measurements, examining the chemical messenger molecules that platelets secrete upon stimulation. While most of the Haynes lab research employs electrochemical and spectroscopic techniques, the group is always exploring new and exciting technologies to answer pressing bioanalytical questions.

Haynes' project for the Guggenheim Fellowship, "Characterization of the Molecular Corona acquired by Technologically Relevant Engineered Nanoparticles in Environmental Matrices," builds on another of her major research interests—nanotoxicology, particularly investigating the biological and ecological impacts of engineered nanomaterials.

The Guggenheim Fellowship will enable Haynes to spend the 2018-19 academic year in the Instituto de Tecnología Química (ITQ) at the Universitat Politécnica de Valéncia, working with Professor Pablo Botella. Her main goal is to adapt analytical methods developed by Professor Botella to characterize novel, technologically relevant nanomaterials in an environmental matrix. She also hopes to build a long-lasting relationship with Professor Botella and other ITQ researchers to complement current collaborations within the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology

Haynes’ other honors and awards include selection as a finalist for the Blavatnik National Award for Young Scientists, a University of Minnesota's Sara Evans Faculty Woman Scholar/Leader Award and Outstanding Post-Doctoral Mentor Award, and the College of Science & Engineering’s Taylor Award for Distinguished Research. In addition to her outstanding research, Haynes is known for her passion and commitment to building a diverse scientific community, which includes being a mentor to the next generation of scientists. Her research group currently includes 12 graduate students, two post-doctoral fellows, and eight undergraduate students.

Haynes is also committed to outreach with and into the community, including working with graduate students to engage young people in science demonstrations and experiments at a local community center, and being one of the lead presenters for the department’s Energy and U program. Energy and U brings more than 10,000 third grade through sixth grade students to campus each year, with many of those students coming from schools with high percentages of students living in poverty and from underrepresented groups in the sciences.

Other University of Minnesota faculty named Guggenheim Fellows this year include:

Carl Elliott, Professor, Center for Bioethics, University of Minnesota—“Lonesome Whistle: Exposing Wrongdoing in Research on Human Subjects”

Chris Larson, Artist, St. Paul, Minnesota; Associate Professor of Art, University of Minnesota: Fine Arts

Since its establishment in 1925, the Foundation has granted more than $360 million in Fellowships to over 18,000 individuals, among whom are scores of Nobel laureates, Fields Medalists, poets laureate, members of the various national academies, and winners of the Pulitzer Prize, Turing Award, National Book Awards, and other important, internationally recognized honors.

For more information on the Fellows and their projects, visit the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation’s website.