Brown University Assistant Professor of Engineering Anita Shukla has been selected to receive an Office of Naval Research (ONR) Director of Research Early Career Grant. This is an extremely selective grant that will help cover research expenses up to $200K per year for five years. The award is given to select applicants to the ONR Young Investigator program, based on two specific criteria: (1) innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology that is relevant to the ONR mission, and (2) community service demonstrated through scientific leadership and community outreach. Through this award, Shukla plans to develop biomaterials that act as sensitive indicators of potential infection, while incorporating therapeutics ranging from small molecules to cells aimed at optimizing wound healing for injured personnel in future military applications. Shukla also serves as Principal Investigator for another grant from ONR aimed at developing advanced antimicrobial field dressings.
Shukla’s research focuses on designing informed biomaterials for applications in drug delivery and regenerative medicine. Prior to arriving at Brown, Shukla was an NIH Ruth Kirschstein postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Bioengineering at Rice University, where she explored the influence of biomimetic geometries on stem cell differentiation. She received her Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2011 as an NSF Graduate Research Fellow. Her graduate research focused on self-assembled biomaterials for drug delivery. Shukla also received an M.S. in chemical engineering practice from MIT. She received her B.S. at Carnegie Mellon University in 2006 with majors in chemical engineering and biomedical engineering.
As an executive branch agency within the Department of Defense, the Office of Naval Research has a provider network through its dynamic partnership with the science and technology community. Its investments across several technology focus areas enable the future operational concepts of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps.