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Dr. Leo Hsu

Dr. Leo Hsu

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Meeting ID: 983 9090 3677

Passcode: 905383

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Dr. Qiyin Fang

The Department of Engineering Physics is holding Seminar Series, where we have invited various speakers from alumni, current students, or external industry.


Dr. Leo Hsu, Research Assistant Professor at the Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tufts University.

Bottom-up Assembled Bioelectrochemical System- From Conductive Bacterial Cables to Porous Bacterial Network.


Clean water and sustainable energy supply are essential resources that drive the sustainable development of all human beings. However, up to 30% of human populations are living without reliable supplies of both resources. The water contaminations and increasing energy demands due to modern human activities such as agriculture, industry, and domestic water/energy usages further aggravate this situation. Electrochemically active bacteria (EAB), a microbial species that are capable of transferring their metabolic electrons to extracellular electron acceptors, provide extensive opportunities in sustainable wastewater treatment and renewable energy generation. However, the efficiency of EAB-based systems to date, remains limited by the inadequate charge and/or mass transport inherent to the native structure of the electroactive biofilms.

In this talk, I will introduce our breakthrough in enhancing the performance of EAB-based systems by a multiscale assembling strategy which allows generating 3-D EAB networks with high conductivity (i.e., enhanced charge transports) and programmable porosity (i.e., enhanced mass transports). Specifically, at the molecular-to-cellular level, we designed a 1-D hydrogel cable to seamlessly integrate high density EAB with reduced graphene oxide. The structural and functional synergies between these bio-abio components allow significant advancement in the charge transport efficiency. At the system level, these biohybrid cables are assembled via bioprinting toward hierarchical 3D structures with optimized porosity to enhance the mass transport efficiency. We successfully employed this assembled EAB network as a living filter for bioremediation applications, which demonstrate a superior efficiency in metabolizing low-concentration toxic ions with minimal environmental impact.

Moving forward, we foresee that this highly conductive, hierarchically assembled EAB networks can perform as a living 3-D anode to continuously trigger electrochemical reduction reactions in a self-sustainable, effective, and programmable fashion, which can open up numerous opportunities to tackle emerging challenges in resource recovery, renewable energy, and nanomaterial synthesis/assembling.


Leo Hsu is currently a research assistant professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Tufts University and a PI of two federal research fundings. Under the support of Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS), he received his PhD in Biomedical Engineering from McMaster University, focusing on the development of environmental sensors for water quality monitoring. After Ph.D., He was awarded the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada postdoctoral fellowship (NSERC-PDF) to develop bio-derived electronic devices in Prof. Xiaocheng Jiang’s group prior to this promotion in 2020. His research focus includes bioelectrochemical systems, bioelectronics, microfluidics, and microfabrication, with specific interest in their applications in resource recovery, wastewater treatment and renewable energy. 

Huan-Hsuan Hsu | Department of Biomedical Engineering (