Hyunjoon Kong's directory photo.

Hyunjoon Kong


Primary Affiliation

Neurotechnology for Memory and Cognition


Status Part-time Faculty

Home Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Phone 333-1178


Address 2057 Beckman Institute, 405 North Mathews Avenue

  • Biography

    Hyunjoon Kong is a professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. He also is affiliated with the Departments of Bioengineering and Pathobiology and is a member of the Regenerative Biology & Tissue Engineering research theme at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology. Professor Kong joined the department in 2007. At Illinois, he has developed various active hybrid materials including stimulus-responsive or self-propelling colloids and hydrogels systems. He further uses the materials for molecular and cell therapies of vascular and brain diseases as well as an infection. Prof. Kong has authored or co-authored more than 150 research papers and over 8 issued and pending patent applications. He has received multiple research awards, and he also serves as a member of the International Editorial Board of Biomaterials and the Editorial Board of Biofabrication.


    • B.S., Hanyang University, Korea, 1992
    • M.S., Hanyang University, Korea, 1995
    • Ph.D., University of Michigan, 2001
    • Postdoctorate, University of Michigan, 2001-2004
    • Research Associate, Harvard University, 2004-2006


  • Honors
    • 2013-2016: LAS Centennial Scholar
  • Research

    Research areas:

    • Pursues the synthesis, characterization, and processing of nanobiomaterials for diagnosis and therapies

    Research interests:

    • Bio-Inspired Materials

    • Drug Delivery

    • Cell Manufacturing and Therapy

    • Tissue Engineering

    The overall goal of our lab is to develop advanced material systems for fundamental and applied biosciences. Specially, we focus on tailoring nano- and micro-structures of materials inspired by nature via simple but novel methods and further modulating their chemical and physical properties for multiple applications including drug delivery, diagnosis/bioimaging, 3D cell culture and therapies, and tissue repair and regeneration.

  • 2016

    • Lee, M., Park, J., Wang, X., Roein-Peikar M., Ko, E., Qin, E., Lee, J., Ha, T.J., Kong, H.J. Rupture force of cell adhesion ligand tethers modulates biological activities of a cell-laden hydrogel. Chemical Communication (In press, 2016).
    • Raman, R., Bhaduri, B., Lee, M.K., Shkumatov, A., Mir, M., Popescu3, G., Kong3, H.J., & Bashir4, R. Projection micro-stereolithography for high-resolution patterning of microvasculature. Advanced Healthcare Materials 5: 622 (2016).
    • Raman, R., Clay, N, Sen, S., Melhem, M., Qin, E., Kong3, H. & Bashir4, R. 3D Printing Enables Separation of Orthogonal Functions Within a Hydrogel Particle. Biomedical Devices (In press, 2016).
    • Schmidt, J; Lee, M.K.; Ko, E.; Jeong, J.H.; DiPietro, L.; Kong, H. Alginate Sulfates Mitigates Binding Kinetics of Proangiogenic Growth Factors with Receptors towards Revascularization. Molecular Pharmaceutics (In press, 2016).


    • Baek, K., Clay, N.E., Qin, E., Sullivan, K., & Kong, H.J. In situ assembly of the collagenpolyacrylamide interpenetrating network hydrogel: Enabling decoupled control of stiffness and degree of swelling. European Polymer Journal (Invited). 72:413-422 (2015).
    • Baek, K., Liang, J., Lim, W.T., Zhao, H., Kim, D.H., & Kong, H.J. In Situ Assembly of Anti- Fouling/Bacterial Silver Nanoparticle-Hydrogel Composites with Controlled Particle Release and Matrix Softening. ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, 7:15359–15367 (2015).
    • Cha, C., Jeong, J.H., & Kong, H.J. Poly (ethylene glycol)-Poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) Core-Shell Microspheres with Enhanced Controllability of Drug Encapsulation and Release Rate. Journal of Biomaterials Science, Polymer Edition. 26: 828-840 (2015).
    • Chen, J., Clay, N.E., Park, N.-h., Kong, H. Non-Spherical Particles for Targeted Drug Delivery. Chemical Engineering Science 125, 20-24 (2015).
    • Chen, J., Lee, M.K., Qin, E., Misra, S., & Kong, H.J. Van der Waals force-induced loading of proangiogenic nanoparticles on microbubbles for enhanced neovascularization. Nanoscale 7: 17139- 17147 (2015).
    • Lai, M-H., Clay, N., Kim, D. H., Kong, H.J. Bacterium-Mimicking nanoparticle surface functionalization with targeting motifs. Nanoscale 7: 6737-6744 (2015).
    • Lee, M. K.; Rich, M. H.; Shkumatov, A.; Jeong, J. H.; Boppart3, M. D.; Bashir4, R.; Gillette1, M. U.; Lee, J.; Kong3, H., Glacier Moraine Formation-Mimicking Colloidal Particle Assembly in Microchanneled, Bioactive Hydrogel for Guided Vascular Network Construction. Advanced Healthcare Materials 2015, 4, (2), 195-201, DOI:10.1002/adhm.201400153.
    • Lee, M.K., Rich, M., Lee, J.H., & Kong, H.J. A bio-inspired, microchanneled hydrogel with controlled spacing of cell adhesion ligands regulates 3D spatial organization of cells and tissue. Biomaterials, 58:26-34 (2015).
    • Lee, M.K., Rich, M.H., Baek, K., Lee, J., Kong, H. Bioinspired tuning of hydrogel permeabilityrigidity dependency for 3D cell culture. Scientific Reports (Nature) 5: 8948 (2015).
    • Pan, Y.T., Smith, C.E., Kwok, K.S., Chen, J., Kong, H.J., Yang, H. Functionalized Ultrathin Palladium Nanosheets as Patches for HepG2 Cancer Cells. Chemical Communication 51:1471-1474 (2015).
    • Rich, M., Lee, M.K., Marshall, N., Clay, N., Chen, J., Mahmassani, Z., Boppart3, M., Kong3, H.J. Water-Hydrogel Binding Affinity Modulates Freeze-Drying Induced Micropore Architecture and Skeletal Myotube Formation. Biomacromolecules 16:2255-2264 (2015).
    • Shkumatov, A., Thompson, M., Choi, K.M., Sicard, D., Baek, K., Kim, D.H., Tschumperlin, D.J., Prakash, Y.S., Kong, H.J. Matrix stiffness-modulated proliferation and secretory function of the airway smooth muscle cells. American Journal of Physiology: Lung Cellular Molecular Physiology 308:L1125-1135 (2015).
    • Smith, C.E., Ernenwein, D., Shkumatov, A., Clay, N., Lee, J., Melhem, M., Misra, S., Zimmerman, S.C. & Kong, H.J. Hydrophilic Packaging of Iron Oxide Nanoclusters for Highly Sensitive Imaging. Biomaterials 69: 184-190 (2015).


    • Brahmbhatt A, NievesTorres E, Yang B, Edwards WD, Roy Chaudhury P, Lee MK, Kong H.J., Mukhopadhyay D, Kumar R, Misra S. The role of iex-1 in the pathogenesis of venous neointimal hyperplasia associated with hemodialysis arteriovenous fistula. PLoS One. 18;9(7):e102542 (2014).
    • Kong, H.J. & Wong, J.Y. Materials for biological modulation, sensing, and imaging. MRS Bulletin, 39: 12-14 (2014).
    • Lai, M.H., Lee, S., Smith, C.E., Kim, K. & Kong, H.J. Tailoring Polymersome Bilayer Permeability Improves Enhanced Permeability and Retention Effect for Bioimaging. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 6, 10821-10829 (2014).
    • Rich, M.H., Lee, M.K., Baek, K., Jeong, J.H., Kim, D.H., Millet, L.J., Bashir4, R., Kong3, H. Material-mediated proangiogenic factor release pattern modulates quality of regenerated blood vessels. Journal of Controlled Release 196: 363-369 (2014).
    • Shkumatov, A., Baek, K., & Kong, H.J. Matrix Rigidity-Modulated Cardiovascular Organoid Formation from Embryoid Bodies. PLoS ONE 9(4): e94764. (2014)
    • Smith, C. & Kong, H.J. Cross-linkable liposomes stabilize a magnetic resonance contrast-enhancing polymeric fastener. Langmuir 30, 3697 (2014).
    • Vega L., J.C.M., Lee, M.K., Jeong, J.H., Smith, C.E., Lee, K.Y., Chung, H.J., Leckband, D.E. & Kong3, H.J. Recapitulating cell-cell adhesion using N-Cadherin biologically tethered to substrates. Biomacromolecules 15(6), 2172–2179 (2014)
    • Yang, T., Huh, W., Kong, H.J., Jho, J.Y. & Kim, I.W. Effects of polymer architecture and charge density on the pH-responsive Ca (II) release from brushite. Colloids and Surfaces A. 459:74-81 (2014).


    • Baek, K.H., Jeong, J., Shkumatov, A., Bashir4, R. & Kong3, H.J. In situ self-folding assembly of multi-walled hydrogel tube for uniaxial, sustained molecular release. Advanced Materials 25, 5568 (2013).
    • Cha, C., Antoniadou, E., Lee, M., Jeong, J., Ahmed, W.W., Saif1, T.A., Boppart3, S.A. & Kong3, H.J. Tailoring Hydrogel Adhesion to Polydimethylsiloxane Substrates Using Polysaccharide Glue. Angewandte Chemie 125, 7087 (2013).
    • Clay, N., Baek, K.H., Shkumatov, A., Lai, M.-H., Smith, C.E., Rich, M. & Kong, H.J. Flow- Mediated Stem Cell Labeling with Superparamagnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticle Clusters. ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 5, 10266 (2013).
    • Damhorst, G.L., Smith, C.E., Salm, E.M., Sobieraj, M.M., Mi, H., Kong3, H.J. & Bashir4 R. A liposome-based ion release impedance sensor for biological detection. Biomedical Devices 15, 895 (2013).
    • DeVolder, R., Antoniadou, E. & Kong, H.J. Enzymatically cross-linked injectable alginate-g-pyrrole hydrogels for neovascularization. Journal of Controlled Release 172, 30 (2013).
    • Janardhana, R., Yang, B., Vohra, P., Roy, B., Withers, S., Bhattacharya, S., Mandrekar, J., Kong, H.J., Leof, E.B., Mukopadyyay, D., & Misra, S., Simvastatin reduces venous stenosis formation in a murine hemodialysis vascular access model. Kidney International 84, 338 (2013).
    • Jeong JH, Schmidt JJ, Kohman RE, Zill AT, Devolder RJ, Smith CE, Lai MH, Shkumatov A, Jensen TW, Schook LG, Zimmerman SC, Kong H.J. Leukocyte-Mimicking Stem Cell Delivery via in Situ Coating of Cells with a Bioactive Hyperbranched Polyglycerol. Journal of the American Chemical Society 135, 8770 (2013).
    • Jeong, J.H., Liang, Y., Jang, M., Cha, C., Chu, C., Lee, H., Jung, W.G., Kim, J.W., Boppart3, S.A., & Kong3, H.J. Stiffness-modulated water retention and neovascularization of dermal fibroblastencapsulating collagen gel. Tissue Engineering 19, 1275 (2013).
    • Liang, Y., Kong, H.J. & Tong, Y.W. Generation of Cell-Instructive Collagen Gels through Thermodynamic Control. ACS Macro Letters 2, 1077 (2013).
    • Schmidt, J., Jeong, J.H., Chan, V., Cha, C., Baek, K., Lai, M-H, Bashir4, R., Kong3, H.J. Tailoring the Dependency between Rigidity and Water Uptake of a Microfabricated Hydrogel with the Conformational Rigidity of a Polymer Cross-linker. Biomacromolecules 14, 1361 (2013).
    • Smith, C.E., Shkumatov, A., Withers, S. G., Yang, B., Glockner, J. F., Misra, S., Roy, E. J., Wong, C.-H., Zimmerman, S. C. & Kong, H.J. A Polymeric Fastener Can Easily Functionalize Liposome Surfaces with Gadolinium for Enhanced Magnetic Resonance Imaging. ACS Nano 7, 9599 (2013).
    • Yonet, N., M. Rich, Lee, M.K., Lai, M-H, & Kong, H.J. Spatiotemporal Control of Erosion and Molecular Release from Micropatterned Poly(ethylene glycol)-based Hydrogel. Biomaterials 34, 8416 (2013).


    • An, E., Jeong, C.B., Cha, C., Kim, D.H., Lee, H., Kong, H.J., Kim, J., Kim, J.W. Fabrication of microgel-in-liposome particles with improved water retention. Langmuir 28, 4095 (2012).
    • C. Cha, J.H. Jeong, X. Tang, A. Zill, S.C. Zimmerman, Y. Prakash, T. Saif1, H.J. Kong3, “Top-down synthesis of versatile polyaspartamide linkers for single-step protein conjugation to materials” Bioconjugate Chemistry , 22, 2377-2383 (2012).
    • C. Cha, S.R. Kim, Y.S. Jin, H.J. Kong, Tuning structural durability of yeast-encapsulating alginate gel beads with interpenetrating networks for sustained bioethanol production. Biotechnology & Bioengineering, 109, 63-73 (2012).
    • Chan, V., Park, K., Collens, M., Kong3, H.J., Saif1, T., & Bashir4, R., Development of miniaturized walking biological machines. Scientific Reports (2012).
    • Cho, E. C., Kong, H.J., Oh, T., Cho, K., Protein adhesion regulated by nanoscale surface conformation. Soft Matter 8: 11801-11808 (2012).
    • Chu, C. & Kong, H.J. Interplay of Cell Adhesion Matrix Stiffness and Cell Type for Non-Viral Gene Delivery. Acta Biomaterialia 8, 2612 (2012).
    • DeVolder, R., Andrew, T.Z., Jeong, J.H., Kong, H.J. Microfabrication of proangiogenic cell-laden alginate-g-Pyrrole hydrogels. Biomaterials 33, 7718 (2012)
    • DeVolder, R., Kim, E.S., Kim, I.W. & Kong, H.J. Modulating the rigidity and mineralization of collagen gels using poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) microparticles. Tissue Engineering 18, 1642 (2012).
    • DeVolder, R., Kong, H.J. Hydrogels for in vivo-like three-dimensional cellular studies. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Systems Biology and Medicine 4, 351 (2012).
    • J. H. Jeong, V. Chan, C. Cha, P. Zortuluna, C. Dyck, K. Jimmy Hsia, R. Bashir4, H. J. Kong3, ’Living’ Microvascular Stamp for Patterning of Functional Neovessels; Orchestrated Control of Matrix Property and Geometry. Advanced Materials 23, 3139-3143 (2012).
    • Jeong, J., Cha, C., Kaczamarowki, A., Oh, S., Kong, H.J. Polyaspartamide Vesicles Induced by Metallic Nanoparticles. Soft Matter, 8, 2237-2242 (2012)
    • Lai, M., Jeong, J., DeVolder, R., Brockman, C., Schroeder, C.M., Kong, H.J. Ellipsoidal polyaspartamide polymersomes with enhanced cell-targeting ability. Advanced Functional Materials 22, 3239 (2012)
    • Larry, J.M., Elise, A.C., Robert, F. Kidong, P., Kong3, H.J., King4, W.P., Bashir4, R. Characterization of Mass and Swelling of Hydrogel Microstructures using MEMS Resonant Mass Sensor Arrays. Small 8, 2555 (2012).
    • V. Chan, J.H. Jeong, P. Bajaj, M. Collens, T. Saif1, H.J. Kong3, R. Bashir4, “Multi-Material Bio- Fabrication of Hydrogel Cantilevers and Actuators with Stereolithography” Lab on a Chip, 12, 88- 98 (2012).
    • V. Chan, M.B. Collens, J.H. Jeong, H.J. Kong3, R. Bashir4, Directed cell growth and alignment on protein-patterned 3D hydrogels with stereolithography. Virtual and Physical Prototyping (2012)
    • Zhao, Y., Graf, B., Chaney, E., Mahmassani, Z., Antoniadou, E., DeVolder, R., Kong3, H.J., Boppart3, M., & Boppart3, S. Integrated multimodal optical microscopy for structural and functional imaging of engineered and natural skin. Journal of Biophotonics 5, 437 (2012)