David R. Walt
University Professor. Professor, scientist, and entrepreneur renowned for his pioneering applications of micro and nanotechnology. Contributions range from the analysis of genetic variation and the behavior of single cells, to the practical application of arrays in the detection of explosives, chemical warfare agents, and food and waterborne pathogens. His next generation sensors, with highly sensitive multi-target analytical capabilities, have been used for both highly specific systems based on antibodies, enzymes, and DNA and more generic detection systems based on semi-selective polymers and neural network analysis (artificial noses). He cofounded Illumina, Inc., which today employs over 5000 people. Walt directs a discovery-based program for Tufts undergraduates to emphasize the importance of integrating engineering, biology, and chemistry and he supports demonstrations and mentorship for K-12 students. He has advised multiple U.S. government agencies on environmental monitoring and biodefense technology.