Mental illness may be the greatest stigma in society. Can a nanoscope breakthrough make screening for schizophrenia, depression and other mental disorders as simple as a diabetes test, and change our collective beliefs about mental health along the way?
Markita Landry is an assistant professor in the department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. She received a B.S. in Chemistry, and a B.A. in Physics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Ph.D. in Chemical Physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Chemical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Landry started her research lab at UC Berkeley in 2016 and has since focused on making nanosensors to measure neurotransmitters in the living brain, to study the underlying mechanisms of psychiatric disorders.
She is the recipient of 10 early-career research awards for her work, and has authored over 30 publications and 4 technical patents.
Her current research centers on the development of synthetic nanoparticle-polymer conjugates for imaging neuromodulation in the brain, and for the delivery of functional biomolecules and nutrients into plants. The Landry lab exploits the highly tunable chemical and physical properties of nanomaterials for the creation of bio-mimetic structures, molecular imaging, and gene editing. She is a recent recipient of early career awards from the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, the Burroughs Wellcome Fund, The Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, the Beckman Young Investigator program, is a Sloan Foundation Fellow, and is a FFAR New Innovator and also a Chan-Zuckerberg Biohub Investigator.