sealPurdue News

May 23, 2002

Biomedical researchers earn top honors from Sigma Xi

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Veteran Purdue researchers Nicholas A. Peppas and Stephen Badylak have been honored with awards from the Purdue University chapter of the scientific research society Sigma Xi.

Peppas, the Showalter Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering, has received the Sigma Xi 2002 Faculty Research Award in recognition of the major impact his work has had within the scientific community. Badylak, a senior research scientist, received a 2002 Professional Staff Research Award.

The prestigious campuswide award honored Peppas' work in the areas of polymer science and pharmaceutical sciences. That work promises to provide applications in drug delivery systems, including better ways of delivering insulin for diabetics.

Badylak was honored for his "outstanding contributions to the science and development of small intestinal submucosa and other extracellular matrices as a scaffold for orthopedic, cardiac and soft tissue repair," according to a citation from the society. Small intestinal submucosa is derived from the small intestines of pigs and has been found to possess unusual healing properties. It has been used to treat thousands of people.

The society also honored 10 students. Doctoral students Blayne A. Roeder, Rebecca L. Pratt and Lon A. Porter Jr. won first-place awards. Roeder, who won for research in tissue engineering, is working with Klod Kokini, who is an assistant dean of engineering and professor of mechanical engineering, biomedical engineering and materials engineering, and Sherry Voytik-Harbin, a senior research scholar in basic medical sciences. Pratt won for work in basic medical science, and her adviser is Michael S. Kinch, an adjunct associate professor of basic medical science. Porter won for his work in chemistry. His adviser is Jillian Buriak, an associate professor of chemistry.

Winning honorable mentions were graduate students James Blanchette, Timothy J. Johnson, Sravanthi Konduri, James J. Chambers, Patricia Abad, Heidi Stout, and Suzanne Zurn-Birkhimer.

Sigma Xi was founded in 1886 as an honor society for science and engineering. Today it is an international research society with programs and activities to promote scientific enterprise and honor scientific achievement.

CONTACTS: Nicholas Peppas, (765) 494-7944,; Stephen Badylak, (765) 494-2994,

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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