The Catholic University of America


Xiaolong Luo, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Mechanical Engineering 

G38 Pangborn Hall
202-319-6952 Phone
202-319-5173 Fax


B.E., Mechatronics, Zhejiang University, 2001
M.S., Mechanical Engineering, Temple University, 2003
Ph.D., Bioengineering, University of Maryland, 2008

Biography in Brief

Xiaolong Luo joined the faculty of the School of Engineering’s Department of Mechanical Engineering as an assistant professor in January 2013. His research handles fluids in microscale (microfluidics), fabricates devices and systems in microscale (microfabrication, MEMS) and integrates biology into devices (biofabrication, bioMEMS). Dr. Luo found and directs the Integrated BioMicroFluidics (iBMF) laboratory, and works with biopolymers extracted from crab/insect shells (chitosan) and sea weed algae (alginate) to construct 3D hydrogels and membranes, assemble biomolecules and living cells, and entrap optically-active nanoparticles in microfluidic networks. Dr. Luo actively collaborates with biologists, engineers and chemists, and develops novel Lab-on-a-Chip devices that find important applications in protein/metabolic engineering, cellular and molecular biology, in situ biosensing and tissue engineering in microenvironment, which help to expedite novel drug discovery and improve human health. Dr. Luo was awarded the CAREER award from National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2016 to develop artificial cell membranes in microfluidics, and the Kaman Excellence in Research Award from the School of Engineering at CUA in 2016.

Selective Publications

1.     P. Pham, T. Vo and X. Luo, “Steering air bubbles with an add-on vacuum layer for biopolymer membranes biofabrication in PDMS microfluidics”, Lab on a Chip, 2017, 17, 248-255.

2.     H. C. Wu, D. N. Quan, C. Y. Tsao, Y. Liu, J. L. Terrell, X. Luo, J. C. Yang, G. F. Payne and W. E. Bentley, “Conferring biological activity to native spider silk: A biofunctionalized protein-based microfiber”, Biotechnology & Bioengineering, 2017, 114, 83-95.

3.     C. J. Wolfram, G. W. Rubloff and X. Luo, “Perspectives in Flow-Based Microfluidic Gradient Generators for Characterizing Bacterial Chemotaxis”, Biomicrofluidics, 2016, 10, 061301, 1-12. 

4.     X. Luo, T. Vo, F. Jambi, P. Pham and J. Choy, “Microfluidic partition with in situ biofabricated semipermeable biopolymer membranes for static gradient generation”, Lab on a Chip, 2016, 3815-3823.

5.     X. Luo, C. Y. Tsao, H. C. Wu, D. N. Quan, G. F. Payne, G. W. Rubloff and W. E. Bentley, “Distal modulation of cell-cell signaling in a synthetic ecosystem in partitioned microfluidics”, Lab on a Chip, 2015, 8:1842-51.

6.     X. Luo, H. C. Wu, J. Betz, W. E. Bentley and G. W. Rubloff, “Air bubble-initiated biofabrication of freestanding, semi-permeable biopolymer membranes in PDMS microfluidics”, Biochemical Engineering Journal, 2014, 89, 2-9.

7.     J. F. Betz, Y. Cheng, C. Y. Tsao, A. Zargar, H. C. Wu, X. Luo, G. F. Payne, W. E. Bentley and G. W. Rubloff, “Optically clear alginate hydrogels for spatially controlled cell entrapment and culture at microfluidic electrode surfaces”, Lab on a Chip, 2013, 10, 1854-1858.

8.     X. L. Luo, “Biofabrication in microfluidics: a converging fabrication paradigm to exploit biology in microsystems”, Journal of Bioengineering & Biomedical Science, 2012, 2:e104.

9.     X. L. Luo, H. C. Wu, C. Y. Tsao, Y. Cheng, J. Betz, G. F. Payne, G. W. Rubloff and W. E. Bentley, “Biofabrication of stratified biofilm mimics for observation and control of bacterial signaling”, Biomaterials, 2012, 33, 5136-5143.

10.  X. L. Luo, S. B. Buckhout-White, W. E. Bentley and G. W. Rubloff, “Biofabrication of chitosan-silver composite SERS substrates enabling quantification of adenine by spectroscopic shift”, Biofabrication, 2011, 3, 034108.

11.  Y. Cheng, X. L. Luo, J. Betz, H. C. Wu, C. Y. Tsao, G. F. Payne, W. Bentley and G. W. Rubloff, “Biocompatible multi-address 3D cell assembly in microfluidic devices using spatially programmable gel formation”, Lab on a chip, 2011, 11, 2316-2318.

12.  R. Fernandes*, X. L. Luo* (co-first authors), C. Y. Tsao, G. F. Payne, R. Ghodssi, G. W. Rubloff and W. E. Bentley, “Biological nanofactories facilitate spatially selective capture and manipulation of quorum sensing bacteria in a bioMEMS device”, Lab on a Chip, 2010, 10, pp. 1128-1134.

13.  X. L. Luo, D. Larios Berlin, J. Betz, G. F. Payne, W. E. Bentley and G. W. Rubloff, “In situ generation of pH gradients in microfluidic devices for biofabrication of freestanding, semi-permeable chitosan membranes”, Lab on a Chip, 2010, 10, pp. 59-65.

14.  X. L. Luo, D. Larios Berlin, S. B. Buckhout-White, R. Ghodssi and G. W. Rubloff, “Design optimization for bioMEMS studies of enzyme-controlled metabolic pathways”, Biomedical Microdevices, 2008, 9, pp. 899-908.


15.  X. L. Luo, A. T. Lewandowski, H. M. Yi, R. Ghodssi, G. F. Payne, W. E. Bentley and G. W. Rubloff, “Programmable assembly of a metabolic pathway enzyme in a pre-packaged reusable bioMEMS device”, Lab on a Chip, 2008, 8, pp. 420-430.