Congratulations to Dr. Gregory Hudalla for his recent award of tenure and promotion to associate professor! This recognition reflects Hudalla’s scholarly contributions to the discipline, the department and the institution. The tenure process involves recommendation by the department, review by the Board of Trustees and approval by the Dean.
Hudalla received his Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2010 under the direction of Professor William Murphy. As part of his doctoral research, he created chemically well-defined culture substrates to elucidate the influence of extracellular factors on adult stem cell behavior. During his postdoctoral training at the University of Chicago and Northwestern under the guidance of Professors Joel Collier and Milan Mrksich, Dr. Hudalla’s research focused on biomaterials as modulators of host immune responses. Recently, he demonstrated that nanofibers can act as vaccine adjuvants to increase the production of antibodies that bind to protein antigens.
In 2013, he joined the department as an assistant professor. His research creates functional biomaterials for therapeutic or diagnostic applications via molecular self-assembly. The Hudalla laboratory develops synthetic peptides that can assemble into a desired nano-scale architecture, and then uses these peptides as “tags” to organize biologically active molecules into functional nanomaterials. For example, their work has led to glycosylated nanofibers that inhibit the immunomodulatory activity of galectins, a family of carbohydrate-binding proteins. In another project, they combine enzymes and carbohydrate-binding proteins into catalytic nanomedicines that are anchored to tissues at an injection site via binding to extracellular carbohydrates. Hudalla’s long-term goals are to create biomaterials that can modulate immune responses for the treatment of autoimmune diseases and aberrant inflammation.
In 2015, he was awarded a National Science Foundation CAREER Award and Faculty Teaching Excellence Award from the University of Florida Department of Biomedical Engineering. In 2016, his research was highlighted in the Emerging Investigator issue from the Journal of Materials Chemistry B, Young Innovator from Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering and was awarded the Pruitt Family Endowed Faculty Fellowship from the University of Florida. In 2017, he received a Trailblazer R21 Award from the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering and the J. Crayon Pruitt Family Term Fellow from the University of Florida. In 2018, he received an Early Career Award from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Preeminence Term Professor from the University of Florida.
Hudalla and Dr. Benjamin Keselowsky, professor, won the 2019 Cade Prize, Florida’s pre-eminent invention and innovation competition for their team Anchor Biologics. Anchor Biologics’ mission is to control inflammatory diseases with their patent-pending technology IDO-GATER that combines a new way to turn off inflammation and a new approach to localize drug action.
Congratulations, Dr. Hudalla!