Professor Wen completed her Ph.D. and M.S. in Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In addition, She earned her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Tsinghua University in Beijing.
Understanding, monitoring, and modulating T cell function.T cells play pivotal roles in human adaptive immune response and have been implicated in a wide array of diseases, such as autoimmunity, allergy, cancer, and infectious diseases, as well as vaccine design and evaluation. The research goal is to harness the immunological power of T cells to fight cancer and infections and to control their undesired behaviors associated with autoimmunity and allergy. To achieve this goal, Professor Wen'sÂ group focuses on developing molecular engineering tools, such as protein-based nanoparticles, multiplexed T cell functional marker biosensor, and synthetic gene/antigen delivery viral particles.
Producing sustainable biofuels using engineered microbes.Â herÂ group is also interested in engineering microbes that are capable of converting lignocellulosic biomass to alternative biofuels, such as ethanol. The focus here is biomass-degrading enzyme activity engineering with the aim of identifying protein mutants that could break down biomass efficiently. Meanwhile, microbial metabolic engineering is employed with the aim of improving the biofuel yield and titer.
Mason Smith, Eshita Khera, Fei Wen*. “Engineering Novel and Improved Biocatalyst by Cell Surface Display,” Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, 2015, DOI: 10.1021/ie504071f
Hui Gao, In-Won Kim, Joon-Ho Choi, Eshita Khera, Fei Wen*, Jung-Kul Lee*. “Repeated production of L-xylulose by an immobilized whole-cell biocatalyst harboring L-arabinitol dehydrogenase coupled with an NAD+ regeneration system,” Biochemical Engineering Journal, 2015, 96: 23-28.
Fei Wen, Huimin Zhao. Construction and Screening of An Antigen-derived Peptide Library Displayed on Yeast Cell Surface for CD4+ T Cell Epitope Identification. In Methods in Molecular Biology. 2013,1061:245-64 (PMID: 23963942)
Jie Sun, Fei Wen, Tong Si, Jianhe Xu, Huimin Zhao. Direct Conversion of Xylan to Ethanol by Recombinant Saccharomyces cerevisiae Strains Displaying an Engineered Mini-hemicellulosome. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 2012, 78(11): 3837-45. (PMID: 22447594)
Jie Sun, Zengyi Shao, Hua Zhao, Nikhil Nair, Fei Wen, Jianhe Xu, Huimin Zhao. Cloning andCharacterization of a Panel of Constitutive Promoters for Applications in Pathway Engineering in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Biotechnology and Bioengineering, 2012, 109(8): 2082-92. (PMID: 22383307)
Fei Wen, Dhruv Sethi, Kai Wucherpfennig, Huimin Zhao. Cell surface display of functional human MHC class II proteins: yeast display versus insect cell display.Protein Engineering, Design, and Selection, 2011, 24(9): 701-9. (PMID: 21752831)