Dr. Xinyan Tracy Cui

Dr. Tracy Cui is an Associate Professor of Bioengineering at the University of Pittsburgh.  She is also the Neural Engineering Track Coordinator for the Department of Bioengineering Graduate Committee and serves on the Department’s 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 Biophysics at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China.  She went on to earn her PhD in Macromolecular Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Cui's main research falls in the category of neural engineering with a special focus on the interface between neural tissue and biomaterials and medical devices. Her lab conduct research in the following areas:

  • 1. Neural Electrode Array / Tissue Interface: Multifunctional smart biomaterial coatings are being developed to improve the electrode/host tissue interface for chronic neural stimulation and recording. Approaches include surface modification, controlled release of soluble drug and growth factors, real time biochemical sensing and stem cell seeding.

  • 2. Neural Tissue Engineering: Manipulation of Stem Cell Growth and Differentiation via substrate materials and electrical stimulation is being conducted. The ultimate goal is to generate design ideas for tissue engineering scaffold to control the stem cell fate in vivo for neural tissue repair and regeneration.

She has won several awards, including the National Science Foundation Career Award (2008), the Wallace Coulter Foundation Early Career Award (2005), and the Charles G. Overberger Award for Research Excellence (2000).  She serves as a grant agency reviewer for the National Science Foundation: SBIT/STTR Review Panels Biochips II as well as the American Institute of Biological Sciences.  Dr. Cui holds two U.S. patents, and she is a reviewer for several prestigious journals, such as: Biomaterials, Journal of Controlled Release, and Acta Biomaterialia, amongst others.

Neural Tissue/Electrode Interface and Neural Tissue Engineering Lab



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