Evan Scott, PhD, Appointed to Direct UVA nanoSTAR

April 9, 2024 by

Evan Scott, PhDA preeminent expert in the use of nanotechnology to understand and fight disease will head up the University of Virginia’s Institute for Nanoscale Scientific and Technological Advanced Research, or nanoSTAR, as UVA enters a bold new era in nanotechnology research with the launch of the Paul and Diane Manning Institute of Biotechnology.

Evan A. Scott, PhD, comes to UVA from Northwestern University, where he has conducted groundbreaking research into the use of tiny nanostructures to battle heart disease, cancer, glaucoma and more. Scott’s nanostructures, far too small for the eye to see, allow for the precise delivery of drugs and other therapeutics to specific inflammatory cells to benefit the body’s immune response. His research provides important answers about the fundamental processes responsible for diseases and paves the way for high-tech treatments using cleverly designed, and mind-blowingly miniscule, synthetic materials.

“We are excited to welcome Dr. Scott to head up nanoSTAR at this critical turning point in nanotechnology research at the University of Virginia,” said Melina R. Kibbe, MD, dean of the School of Medicine. “Nanotechnology has vast untapped potential to benefit patients everywhere. It is a long-standing strength for UVA and will be a foundational pillar of the Paul and Diane Manning Institute of Biotechnology.”

The Manning Institute, under construction at Fontaine Research Park, will tackle some of the greatest challenges in medicine by focusing on cutting-edge areas of research such as nanotechnology, targeted drug delivery, cellular therapies, and gene therapy. NanoSTAR, with Scott at the helm, will play a key role in that nanotechnology research, and Scott will work to foster collaborations across Grounds, including the School of Medicine, School of Engineering and Applied Science, School of Data Science, and School of Arts and Sciences, among others.

“Dr. Scott will be instrumental in enabling us to capitalize fully on the tremendous nanotechnology work taking place at UVA,” said Jennifer L. West, PhD, dean of the School of Engineering. “He will help us bring together cross-disciplinary expertise and break down silos, to the benefit of the field of nanotechnology and its many exciting applications.”

Holding appointments in both the School of Medicine and School of Engineering, Scott will serve as a vital link between the university’s nano-research and its work to develop novel therapies to treat disease. He will also support UVA Cancer Center’s mission to develop new cancer treatments.

“The potential of nanotechnology to improve and even transform cancer care has already become clear,” said Thomas P. Loughran Jr., MD, director of UVA Cancer Center. “We are excited to have Dr. Scott join UVA to help us improve cancer care for patients across Virginia and beyond.”

As head of nanoSTAR, Scott succeeds the late Mark Kester, PhD. Kibbe, West and Loughran salute Dr. Kester for his many contributions to UVA and the field of nanotechnology.

As director of nanoSTAR, Scott will hold the David Goodman Family Bicentennial Professorship in Nanomedicine.  In addition, as an exceptionally devoted teacher, mentor and scholar, Scott will hold a University Professorship, a special designation given to faculty who are appointed by, and report directly to, the provost and president. He will hold the Jefferson Scholars Foundation Thomas A. Saunders III Family Distinguished University Professorship.

Scott earned his PhD in biomedical engineering at Washington University in St. Louis and his bachelor’s in biomedical engineering at Brown University. He did postdoctoral work at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL) in Lausanne, Switzerland.

He is incredibly well-funded for his research and current holds multiple grants from the National Institutes of Health – totaling more than $8 million – and has been a recipient of an NIH Director’s New Innovator Award and the National Science Foundation CAREER Award.  He has received numerous awards and recognitions for his research, including the Biomedical Engineering Society Mid-Career Award and being named a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering.

Scott has authored over 80 publications and book chapters, holds 21 patents, and is the founder and CEO of SNC Therapeutics, Inc., an AbbVie portfolio startup company focused on cancer nanotherapy. He is expected to join UVA on Aug. 1.

Filed Under: Faculty, Featured, Research