We are a team of young, enthusiastic scientists working at the interface of chemistry, engineering, and biomedical science. We leverage our expertise in materials chemistry, nanotechnology, bioimaging, and microfluidics to invent new bioanalytical tools that probe a previously inaccessible dimension of biological data. Using the newly developed technologies, we unveil the molecular and cellular mechanisms driving the ensemble behavior of native biological systems. The specific systems and biological questions we ask constantly evolve but we are generally interested in brains, tumor tissues, and microbial communities, the systems that have inherent heterogeneity and strong intercellular interactions. Our research projects range from technology development to discovery of new biology.

Positions Available

We are actively seeking outstanding and highly motivated post-doctoral research fellows in Spatial Transcriptomics and Single Virus Genomics. The candidate must 1) have 3 or more papers as a first author in high-profile journals, 2) be independent in scientific research and writing, self-motivated, ethical, and team-spirited, and 3) have excellent laboratory, communication, and organizational skills. Candidates are invited to apply by sending a CV, cover letter including the statement of research interest, relevant publications, and contact information for three references to Prof. Han (hshan@illinois.edu). Prof. Han is a faculty member in Chemistry, the Center for Biophysics and Quantitative Biology, and the Institute of Genomic Biology. The group members have full access to facilities at IGB, MRL, MNTL, and Biotechnology Center.

  1. Spatial transcriptomics

After a big boom in single cell sequencing, the next step is to identify how cells are spatially and functionally organized so that we can better model the ensemble behavior of tissue. We independently established a MERFISH platform, which is freely upgradable and reconfigurable. In addition to further innovating the platform to allow ultra-high throughput, high resolution spatial transcriptomics, we study novel biology in brain and cancer. This project is supported by a ~2M R35 grant from the National Institute of Health. The candidates with the following expertise are given priority.

  • Cell biology and molecular biology
  • Single cell sequencing or analysis
  • Image processing and bioinformatics/biostatistics
  • Interest in brains and cancera

  1. Single Virus Genomics

We pioneer single virus genomics by developing microfluidic platforms allowing the direct sequencing of single virus genomes at extremely high throughput (up to hundreds of thousands of virus particles). In addition to driving further technological innovations, we are studying influenza virology with this new technology. We are looking for a postdoc who will work on the ‘quantitative profiling of the evolutionary processes in influenza’ using the new single virus sequencing platform. This project is funded by several foundational grants and a collaborative R01 from the National Institute of Health. The candidates with the following expertise are given priority.

  • Next generation sequencing and data analysis
  • Influenza biology
  • Microfluidics (not necessary but necessary to be open to learning microfluidic technologies)

For details, please refer to the contact page.

Lab News

01/2023: Our imaging initiatives were featured in a UIUC news article: “Hee-Sun Han leading Spatial Omics Initiative at Illinois” Read more here.

11/2022: Marisa has passed her prelim and is now a PhD candidate. Congrats!
09/2022: Congratulations to JuYeon on her starting faculty position at Millikin University where she is an assistant professor in the Department of Biology and director of the pre-professional program in health sciences.
09/2022: Welcome to our new first years Farah, Jin, and Yaxin!
09/2022: We received ~2M funding from the NIH’s Maximizing Investigator’s Research Award for a “Chemical Toolbox for Multiscale Integrative Imaging.” This grant will support or tissue imaging and spatial transcriptomics.
08/2022: Ryan published his paper studying methods to modify and prolong release of antioxidant drugs in ACS Advanced Materials and Interfaces
06/2022: Wenyang published an invited perspective “Droplet Microfluidics for High-Resolution Virology” in ACS Analytical Chemistry!
06/2022: Outreach Activity at Next Gen School’s STEAM Studio! Demo experiments to inspire a new generation of Scientists. see photos
06/2022: Congrats to Professor Han! She received the Amy L. Devine Award for commitment to student learning!
05/2022: Thomas published a study of double emulsion droplets in ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces.
02/2022: Wenyang published his first paper studying inertial microfluidics in ACS Analytical Chemistry!

10/2021: Han lab members attend the MicroTAS hybrid conference in Palm Springs, CA.
08/2021: First Han lab summer research symposium was so much fun! Juyeon won the best productivity award and Thomas won the best presentation award! see photos
08/2021: Congrats Wenyang for passing the prelim and becoming a PhD candidate!
08/2021: Congrats Joon for starting a faculty position at the Catholic University of Korea!
07/2021: We received funding from CSL Behring for multiplexed biomarker detection in patient blood!
06/2021: Professor Han was invited to give a talk on quantum dot precursor design at the Electrochemical Society meeting.
06/2021: Welcome undergraduate Calvin Doty to the group!
06/2021: Congratulations Marisa for getting the CBI training grant!
03/2021: Professor Han was invited to give a talk on microfluidic platforms for biomedical applications at Pittcon 2021.
02/2021: Professor Han served as a session chair at SLAS2021.
02/2021: Professor Han is selected as a finalist for SLAS Innovation award.
02/2021: Professor Han received the Johnson & Johnson WiSTEM2D Scholars award! The award selects 6 world-leading female scientists, one in each area of Science, Technology, Engineering, Technology, Math, Manufacturing, and Design. This year more than 650 applicants applied from 40 countries. Professor Han was selected as a winner for Science.

01/2021: Welcome Sungjong Lee to the group!
01/2021: Welcome undergraduate Jack Hovey to the group!
01/2021: Welcome undergraduate Starwing Chen to the group!
12/2020: Professor Han gave an invited seminar at New England Complex Fluid Meeting.
12/2020: Professor Han was invited to give a seminar in the Department of Biology at SNU.
Welcome Marisa Asadian to the lab.
10/2020: Professor Han was invited to give a seminar in the Biomedical Engineering department at Purdue.
09/2020: Welcome undergraduate Giselle to the group!
08/2020: Congratulations to Joon for his recent articles in ACS Nano and Nature Communications.
06/2020: Thomas’s article selected as inside front cover for Lab on a Chip issue 13. Congrats!


06/2020: We filed a patent on Joon’s QD precursor design. Good work!
: Prof. Han received a seed grant from Cancer Center at Illinois as a leading PI.


03/2020: Too bad that we cannot have farewell dinner with Arun Jayaraman, our undergraduate researcher. He was very productive, becoming an author on two papers. He is now off to graduate school at Georgia Tech!
: The Han group attended the Pittcon 2020 in Chicago. Joon gave an oral presentation and Juyeon, Thomas, Alex, Ding, and Wenyang gave a poster presentation. It was fun to hear new scientific progress from other groups and network with other scientists!


02/2020: Congratulations Alex for getting the UIUC chemistry travel grant!
: Welcome Ryan Miller to the lab.
11/2019: Professor Han was invited to give a departmental seminar in the Chemical Engineering department at Virginia Tech.
09/2019: The Han group attended the Turkey run conference! Everyone gave poster presentations!

08/2019: Professor Han gave an invited lecture at US-Korea Conference on Science, Technology, and entrepreneurship.
: Welcome undergraduate Andrew Dobria to the lab.
06/2019: We filed a patent with Thomas’s bead-based diagnostic technology with the Bashir group. Good work!
03/2019: Professor Han gave an invited seminar at Beckman Instituted.
12/2018: Welcome Wenyang Jing to the lab.
11/2018: The Han group attended the Turkey run conference. Prof. Han gave a keynote presentation and all other members gave poster presentations. It was fun!
11/2018: Professor Han was invited for a departmental seminar in the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics at University of Pittsburgh.
10/2018: Welcome Hanyang Zhao to the lab.
7/2018: Welcome postdoc JuYeon Lee to the lab.
5/2018: Lab construction is complete! See photos