Nicholas A. Peppas

Photo of Peppas, Nicholas A.

Professor & Director of the Institute for Biomaterials, Drug Delivery and Regenerative Medicine

Cockrell Family Regents Chair in Engineering #6

Research Area:
Cellular and Biomolecular Engineering

Phone: (512) 471-6644
Office: BME 3.503C

Related Websites

Research Focus

Controlled drug delivery; Biomedical engineering; Biomaterials; Tissue engineering; Molecular modeling of protein structures in contact with biomaterials and tissues; Modeling of biomedical devices; Bionanotechnology; Molecular recognition processes; Polymer physics; Polymerization reaction engineering; Diffusion in polymers.


Our research contributions have been in several areas of drug delivery, biomaterials, biomolecular engineering, mass transfer, kinetics and reaction engineering, polymers and biomedical engineering. The multidisciplinary approach of thiis research in biomolecular engineering blends modern molecular and cellular biology with engineering to generate next-generation systems and devices, including bioMEMS with enhanced applicability, reliability, functionality, and longevity. The fundamental studies of his group have provided valuable results on biomaterials design and development. Our group is known for our work on the preparation, characterization and evaluation of the behavior of compatible, cross linked polymers known as hydrogels, which have been used as biocompatible materials and in controlled release devices, especially in controlled delivery of drugs, peptides and proteins, development of novel biomaterials, biomedical transport phenomena, and biointerfacial problems. This work has led to a series of novel controlled release systems known as swelling controlled release systems, a series of pH-sensitive devices for drug delivery and a wide range of bio- and mucoadhesive systems. They include novel systems for insulin delivery to treat Type 1 diabetic patients, calcitonin delivery for osteoporosis treatment, growth hormone delivery, delivery of siRNA for treatment of Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis and celiac disease, treatment of hemophilia by oral Factor IX delivery, new systems for interferon beta delivery for multiple sclerosis treatment, etc. Other biomedical work of his group had dealt with understanding of transport of biological compounds in tissues, analysis of polymer/tissue interactions, understanding of the behavior of biomembranes, and intelligent, recognitive systems for protein delivery.

 Selected Publications

  • JM Knipe, LE Strong, NA Peppas, Enzyme- and pH-Responsive Microencapsulated Nanogels for Oral Delivery of siRNA to Induce TNF-α Knockdown in the Intestine, Biomacromolecules, 17, 788-797 (2016).
  • S. D. Horava and N. A. Peppas, Design of pH-Responsive Biomaterials to Enable the Oral route of Hematological Factor IX, Ann Biomed Engin., 44, 1970-1982 (2016).
    N.A. Peppas and J.R. Clegg, The Challenge to Improve the Response of Biomaterials to the Physiological Environment, Regen. Biomaterials, 3, 67-71 (2016).
    H. Culver, S. Steichen, M. Herrera-Alonso, N. A. Peppas, Versatile Tool for Colloidal Stability and Surface Functionalization of Hydrophobic Nanomaterials, Langmuir, 32, 5629-5636 (2016).
  • M.C. Koetting, J.F. Guido, M. Gupta, A. Zhang, & N.A. Peppas. pH-responsive and enzymatically-responsive hydrogel microparticles for the oral delivery of therapeutic proteins: Effects of protein size, crosslinking density, and hydrogel degradation on protein delivery. J. Control. Release, 221, 18-25 (2016).
  • J.P. Shofner and N.A. Peppas, “Overview of Biodrug Delivery Systems: Disease Fundamentals, Delivery Problems and Strategic Approaches”, in "Biodrug Delivery Systems: Fundamentals, Applications and Clinical Development," M. Morishita and K. Park, eds, 1-12, Informa Healthcare, New York, NY, 2016.
  • M. Morishita, E. S. Khafagy, J.P. Shofner, and N.A. Peppas, “Oral Delivery Systems”, in "Biodrug Delivery Systems: Fundamentals, Applications and Clinical Development," M. Morishita and K. Park, eds, 172-186, Informa Healthcare, New York, NY, 2016.
    M. I. Neves, M. E. Wechsler, M. E. Gomes, R. L. Reis, P. L. Granja, and N. A. Peppas, Molecularly Imprinted Intelligent Scaffolds for Tissue Engineering Applications. Tissue Engineering Part B: Reviews, 23, 27-43 (2016).
  • A. S. Puranik, L. P. Pao, V. M. White, and N. A. Peppas.,, Synthesis and Characterization of pH-Responsive Nanoscale Hydrogels for Oral Delivery of Hydrophobic Therapeutics, Europ. J. Pharm. Biopharm., 108, 196-213 (2016).
  • A. S. Puranik, L. P. Pao, V. M. White, and N. A. Peppas, In Vitro Evaluation of pH-Responsive Nanoscale Hydrogels for the Oral Delivery of Hydrophobic Therapeutics, Ind. Engin. Chem. Res., 55, 10576-10590 (2016).
  • H. R. Culver, S. D. Steichen and N.A. Peppas, " A Closer Look at the Impact of Molecular Imprinting on Adsorption Capacity and Selectivity for Protein Templates", Biomacromolecules, 17, 4045-4053 (2016).
  • N.A. Peppas and A. Khademhosseini, Make Better, Safer Biomaterials, Nature, 540, 335-337 (2016).
  • S. D. Steichen, C. O'Connor, and N. A. Peppas, Development of a P((MAA-co-NVP)-g-EG) hydrogel platform for oral protein delivery: effects of hydrogel composition on environmental response and protein partitioning, Macromol. Biosci. DOI: 10.1002/mabi.201600266 (2017).
    S. Horava and N.A. Peppas, Biodegradable Hydrophilic Carriers for the Oral Delivery of Hematological Factor IX for Hemophilia B Treatment, Intern. J. Pharmac, 514, 220-228 (2017).
  • H. Culver, J. Clegg and N.A. Peppas, Analyte-responsive Hydrogels: Intelligent Materials for Biosensing and Drug Delivery, Acc. Chemical Research, 50, 170-178, (2017).
    S. Horava and N.A. Peppas, "Recent Advances in Hemophilia B Therapy”, Drug Delivery Transl. Res., 7, 359-371 (2017).
  • J. Vela-Ramirez, L. Sharpe and N.A. Peppas, “Current state and challenges in developing oral vaccines”, Adv Drug Deliv Revs, 114, 116-131 (2017).
    M. Yoshida, N. Kamei, K. Muto, J. Kunisawa, K. Takayama, N. A. Peppas, M. Takeda-Morishita, “Complexation hydrogels as potential carriers in oral vaccine delivery systems”, Europ. J. Pharm. Biopharm., 112, 138-142 (2017)
  • C. O'Connor, S. Steichen, N.A. Peppas, Development and characterization of stimuli-responsive hydrogel microcarriers for oral protein delivery, J. Biomed. Mater. Res, A, 105, 1243-1251 (2017).
  • John R. Clegg, Justin X. Zhong, Afshan S. Irani, Joann Gu, David S. Spencer and Nicholas A. Peppas, Characterization of protein interactions with molecularly imprinted hydrogels that possess engineered affinity for high isoelectric point biomarkers, J. Biomed. Mater. Res, A, 105, 1565-1574, (2017).
    JR Clegg, ME Wechsler, NA Peppas, “Vision for Functionally Decorated and Molecularly Imprinted Polymers in Regenerative Engineering, Regen. Engin. Transl. Medicine, 3, 166-175 (2017).
  • HR Culver, NA Peppas. Protein-Imprinted Polymers: The Shape of Things to Come? Chemistry of Materials 29, 5753–5761 (2017)
    H.R. Culver, I. Sharma, M.E. Wechsler, E.V. Anslyn and N.A. Peppas, “Charged poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) nanogels for use as differential protein receptors in a turbidimetric sensor array”, Analyst, 142, 3183-3193 (2017).
  • M.I. Neves, M.E. Wechsler, M.E. Gomes, R.L. Reis, P.L. Granja and N.A. Peppas, “Molecularly Imprinted Intelligent Scafolds for Tissue Engineering Applications”, Tissue Engineering, B, 23, 27-43 (2017).
  • J.T. Peters, S. Varghese, D. Subramanian, N.A. Peppas, “Surface Hydrolysis-Mediated PEGylation of Poly(isopropyl Acrylamide) Based Nanogels, Regen. Biomaterials, 4, 281-287 (2017).
  • J.T. Peters, S. S. Hutchinson, N. Lizana, I. Verma, N.A. Peppas, “Synthesis and characterization of poly(N-isopropyl methacrylamide) core/shell nanogels for controlled release of chemotherapeutics”, Chem. Eng. J., published DOI 10.1016/j.cej.2018.01.09 (2018).
  • L.A. Sharpe, J.E. Vela Ramirez, O.M. Haddadin, K.A. Ross, B. Narasimhan, N.A. Peppas, “pH-Responsive Microencapsulation Systems for the Oral Delivery of Polyanhydride Nanoparticles”, Biomacromolecules, 19, 793-802 (2018).
  • J.X. Zhong, J.R. Clegg, E.W. Ander, N.A. Peppas, “Tunable Poly(methacrylic acid-co-acrylamide) Nanoparticles Through Inverse Emulsion”, J. Biomed. Mater. Res., A, 106A, 1677–1686 (2018).
  • A.M. Wagner, M.P. Gran, N.A. Peppas, “Designing the New Generation of Intelligent Biocompatible Carriers for Protein and Peptide Delivery”, Acta Pharmaceutica Sinica B, 8, 147-164 (2018).
  • Y Fukuoka, ES Khafagy, T Goto, N Kamei, K Takayama, NA Peppas, “Combination Strategy with Complexation Hydrogels and Cell-Penetrating Peptides for Oral Delivey of Insulin, Biol. Pharmac. Bull. 41, 811-814 (2018).
  • A.M. Wagner, D.S. Spencer, N.A. Peppas, “Advances Architectures in the Design of Responsive Polymers for Cancer Nanomedicine, J. Appl. Polym. Sci., 135, 46154 (2018).
    N.A. Peppas and J. Vela Ramirez, “Molecularly and Cellularly Imprinted, Intelligent Scaffolds for Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine”, in X.B. Fu and N. A. Peppas, eds, “Advances in Biomaterials and Tissue Regeneration”, Beijing, 2018.
  • G. Orive, N. Ashammakhi, A. Dolatshahi-Pirouz, R. Hernandez, A. Khademhosseini, D. F. Emerich, J. Vela Ramirez, E. Santos Vizcaíno, N.A. Peppas, J. L. Pedraz, “3D encapsulated cells to release biologically active products in the eye”, Progress in Retinal and Eye Research, in press.
  • T. M. De Witte, L. Fratila-Apachitei, A. A. Zadpoor and N. A. Peppas, “Bone Tissue Engineering via Growth Factor Delivery: From Scaffolds to Complex Matrices”, Regen. Biomaterials, in press.
  • D.S. Spencer, B. C. Luu, D. W. Beckmann and N.A. Peppas, J. Polym. Sci., Polym. Chem, 56, 1536-1544 (2018).
  • H. F. Florindo, V. Sainz, L. I. Moura, C. Peres, A. I. Matos, A. S Viana, A. M. Wagner, J. E. Vela Ramirez, T. Barata, M. Gaspar, S. Brocchini, M. Zloh, N. A. Peppas, R. Satchi-Fainaro, “a- Galactosylceramide and Peptide-based Nano-vaccine Synergistically Induced a Strong Tumor Suppressive Effect in Melanoma”, Acta Biomaterialia, published online DOI: