CRISPR, mRNA therapeutics, siRNA therapeutics, DNA barcoded nanoparticles, big data / nanotechnology
James Dahlman (he / him) is a bioengineer / molecular engineer whose work lies at the interface of next-generation sequencing, nanotechnology, and gene editing. His lab focuses on targeted drug delivery, in vivo gene editing, Cas9 therapies, and RNA therapies.
The DahlmanLab is known for applying "big data" technologies to nanomedicine. One such technology is DNA barcoded nanoparticles; using DNA barcodes, >200 lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) can be analyzed simultaneously in a single animal (in vivo). After studying thousands of nanoparticles directly in vivo, LNPs are used to deliver targeted therapies including siRNA, mRNA, and Cas9. James' trainees have designed nanoparticles that deliver RNAs outside the liver, several of which have been licensed for clinical development. For example, James co-founded GuideTx based on DahlmanLab work; Guide was later acquired.
As a result of this work, James was named 1 of the 35 most innovative people under the age of 35 by MIT Technnology Review in 2018 and was listed by the World Economic Forum in their Top 10 Emerging Technologies in 2019. James has won national / international awards including the BMES Rita Schaffer Award, ASGCT Outstanding New Investigator Award, Controlled Release Society Gene Delivery and Gene Editing Young Investigator Award, and the Georgia Tech Outstanding Achievement in Early Career Research Award. He has published in Cell, Nature, Nature Nanotechnology / Biotechnology / Biomedical Engineering / Cell Biology, Science, Science Translational Medicine and other high impact journals.
James supports new research ideas students generate on their own. To this end, DahlmanLab students learn how to (i) generate new ideas, (ii) select the good ones, and (iii) efficiently test whether the good ideas will actually work. DahlmanLab students learn how to design / characterize / administer nanoparticles, how to isolate different cell types in vivo, how to rationally design DNA to record information, Cas9 therapies, and deep sequencing. As a result, the lab is an interdisciplinary group with students that have backgrounds in medicinal chemistry, BME, bioinformatics, biochemistry, and other fields. The lab welcomes students with all types of scientific backgrounds. The lab firmly stands by students, independent of their personal beliefs, preferences, or backgrounds.