Dr. Xinyan Tracy Cui

Dr. Tracy Cui is an Associate Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Cui is the Director of the Neural Tissue/Electrode Interface and Neural Tissue Engineering Lab. She is also the Neural Engineering Track Coordinator for the Department of Bioengineering Graduate Committee and serves on the Departmentís Faculty Search Committee. Prior to this she was a Research Scientist at Unilever Research US in Edgewater, New Jersey.

Dr. Cui earned her BE in Polymer Materials and Chemical Engineering and her MS in Biophysics at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. She went on to earn her PhD in Macromolecular Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

In the Dr. Cuiís lab, the primary research focus is on the interactions between neural tissue and smart biomaterials. Dr Cuiís research interests lie in neural engineering with special focuses on neural electrode-tissue interface, neural tissue engineering, central nervous system drug delivery, and biosensors. Specific projects include:

  • Biomimetic surface coatings for neural microelectrode arrays to improve chronic neural recording and stimulation stability, reliability and longevity
  • Novel material and device development for implantable neural electrodes
  • Micro-patterning of biochemical, surface chemical, and electrical cues on electrode arrays for neural network study
  • On demand drug delivery in the nervous system
  • Implantable biosensors for cytokines and neurochemicals
  • Control of neural stem cell growth and differentiation via surface and electrical cues
  • Smart coatings for Mg based biosensors

For her work, Dr. Cui has won numerous awards, most recently:

  • 013 and 2014 Peking University Engineering Globex Fellow
  • 2013 Swanson School of Engineering Bicentennial Alumni Faculty Fellow
  • 2013 Carnegie Science Emerging Female Scientist Award
  • 2009 and 2011 Pitt Innovator Award

She serves as a grant agency reviewer for the National Institute of Health, National Science Foundation, Science Foundation of Ireland as well as the American Institute of Biological Sciences. Dr. Cui holds one granted and three filed U.S. patents, and she is a reviewer for many prestigious journals, such as Advanced Materials, Biomaterials, Journal of Controlled Release, Acta Biomaterialia, Biomedical Microdevices, Biosensors and Bioelectronics, Journal of Neural Engineering, Nature Communication, amongst others. Dr. Cui is the Associate Editor of the Journal of Materials Chemistry B.

View a list of Dr. Cuiís publications here.


Dr. Tracy Cui, PhD
Phone: (412) 383-6672
Fax: (412) 383-5918
Email: xic11@pitt.edu