The Mitchell Lab is based in the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania. Our research lies at the interface of biomaterials science, drug delivery, and cellular and molecular bioengineering to fundamentally understand and therapeutically target biological barriers. We apply our research findings and the technologies developed to a range of human health applications, including cancer metastasis, immunotherapy, genome editing, cardiovascular disease, and regenerative medicine. Current research projects include: synthesis of novel biomaterials and nanoparticles for the delivery of nucleic acids (siRNA, miRNA, mRNA, CRISPR-Cas9) for cancer therapy; engineering of immune cells for immunotherapy and vaccines; investigating the influence of biomaterial chemical structure on in vivo transport to target cells and tissues using high-throughput screening platforms; and novel drug delivery technologies for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.


July 2021 – Sarah’s paper on engineering a new microfluidic platform to manufacture mRNA and siRNA lipid nanoparticles across all scales of development is published in Nano Letters and is featured by Penn Today and Penn Engineering.

March 2021 – Mike is interviewed by Wudan Yan of MIT Technology Review on the potential of new lipid nanoparticle technologies to improve the storage and distribution of COVID-19 mRNA vaccines.

March 2021 – Mike is interviewed by Tom Avril of The Philadelphia Inquirer on Maggie and Rachel’s research in collaboration with CHOP on engineering lipid nanoparticles for mRNA delivery to treat disease before birth.

February 2021 – Mike gives a Nature Nanotechnology webinar with Professors Betty Kim, Ankur Singh, and Angus Johnston on nanomaterials for immunomodulation. A full recording of the webinar can be found here.

February 2021 – Ningqiang and Maggie’s paper on nanomaterials for T cell cancer immunotherapy in collaboration with Carl June’s lab is published in Nature Nanotechnology.

February 2021 – Mike is interviewed by Christopher Rowland of The Washington Post on how the use of lipid nanoparticles to deliver RNA into cells will impact the pharmaceutical industry for years to come.

January 2021 – Rachel and Maggie’s paper on engineering new lipid nanoparticles for therapeutic mRNA delivery before birth (in utero) is published in Science Advances and is featured by Penn Engineering and CHOP News.

January 2021 – Maggie and Rebecca’s paper on engineering precision nanoparticles for drug delivery in collaboration with Professors Nicholas Peppas and Robert Langer is published in Nature Reviews Drug Discovery.