Welcome the Newest Associate Editors of ACS Publications Journals: Q1 2018

When a scientific journal adds a new associate editor or senior editor, that change means more for readers than just a tweak to the masthead.  New editors bring new experiences, new perspectives, and new ideas to their publications. Get to know some of ACS’ latest editors and learn what unique gifts they’ll be bringing to their respective journals.
***

Guosong Chen, ACS Macro Letters

What do you hope to bring to your journal?

ACS Macro Letters highlights significant contributions from polymers to all aspects of soft matter science. I do hope that I can promote these contributions in my own way, especially in the research fields of supramolecular chemistry and biomaterials. As the first Associate Editor of this journal in Asia, I would like to connect it more to Asian countries.

Describe your current research.

Currently, we try to understand biomacromolecules, especially carbohydrates and proteins from the viewpoint of polymer scientists. We manipulate the non-covalent interactions between these molecules, in order to build new materials with unique structures, properties, and functions. And these efforts can reciprocally help us to understand these biomacromolecules better.

What are the major challenges facing your field today?

Polymer science now has to broaden its research field to include biomacromolecules, not only using these molecules as building blocks, but also changing them into a new generation of polymers.
***

Luisa Torsi, ACS Omega

What do you hope to bring to your journal?

I hope to bring my experience in the field of highly performing bio-electronic sensors. Organic bioelectronics represents the fastest growing and most exciting direction in organic electronics today, promising to deliver new technologies for healthcare and human well‐being. So, I would love to bring competences in analytical sensors and flexible and printable electronic, with all their connected interdisciplinary flavor.

Describe your current research.

My most recent work deals with the study and development of a highly performing bioelectronic device, exploiting a totally novel approach to field-effect biosensing. The transistor, whose capacitance is modulated by the dielectric changes occurring in the integrated biological recognition elements, can reliably and selectively detect molecules, from odorant ones to biomarkers, at extremely low concentration, producing for example differential responses to enantiomers with an impressively high selectivity factor. Moreover, the bioelectronic device is printable on plastic or even paper. This ultra-high-performance, low-cost and disposable device is also potentially a not invasive test-platform as disease markers such as the C-reactive protein or immunoglobulins can be detected directly in saliva.

What are the major challenges facing your field today?

While interdisciplinarity among fields such as analytical chemistry, solid-state device physics, and materials chemistry, biochemistry is becoming more and more relevant, a true cross-pollination among these fields is still lacking. So one of the main challenges is really to find ways to better integrate key aspects of these fields.
***

Tina M. Nenoff, Industrial & Chemical Engineering Research

What do you hope to bring to your journal?

I bring a unique application space for nanoporous materials. Traditional applications for oil, natural gas, and industrial gas separations are essential. I am involved with those, and also less traditional ones such as the clean up of nuclear civilian energy and accidents, sensor development, and energy-water nexus needs.

Furthermore, my research (and publishing) covers from basic to applied to implementation/commercialization. That has taught me how to tell the readers the importance of the work being presented.

Describe your current research.

My interests are in nanoporous materials and the chemistry and reactivity of gases or ions that occurs at the surfaces (both internal and external). My studies are focused on developing the structure-property relationship at the nanoscale and how that relates to bulk scale performance.

My current research includes: Novel nanoporous materials (zeolites, MOFs, amorphous silica) for the (1) sequestration and storage of radioactive species, (2) catalysis and light gas separations, (3) produced water purification.

What are the major challenges facing your field today?

There is a great output of new nanoporous materials in publications. Bringing these materials to implementation and commercialization requires that they are put through both engineering and process experimentation. Those are the studies that are not always carried out. Having a venue for them is essential, and I believe well represented in the journal I&ECR.
***

Zhan Chen, Langmuir

What do you hope to bring to your journal?

I am extremely excited to become a senior editor for Langmuir. As indicated on the journal website, “Langmuir is the leading journal focusing on the fundamental science of systems and materials in which the interface dominates structure and function”. Along with the Editor-in-Chief and other senior editors, I hope that I could help to further retain Langmuir as the flagship journal in the field of fundamental interfacial and colloidal science and to further facilitate the broad impact of the journal by reaching out to even more scientists for submitting their articles while maintaining the excellent quality of the published papers. I have studied the fundamental science of complex interfaces using advanced spectroscopic techniques, and have applied such fundamental knowledge to practical applications. I will work hard to encourage excellent scientists including young scientists developing and studying interfaces using state-of-the-art techniques and methodologies to contribute to Langmuir, and ensure that such published fundamental findings will have a substantial impact on the current and future fundamental studies as well as applied research. I have received education and performed research in both the U.S. and China, and my hope is that I could attract articles from excellent scientists both inside and outside of the USA, and assist the journal to develop more substantial influences in Asia through my experiences and contacts. Interfacial science covers many areas in chemistry and beyond. Therefore I hope that I can further promote to publish articles reporting interdisciplinary research in the forefront of many areas.

Describe your current research.

My research is focused on molecular level studies on complex surfaces and interfaces, such as polymer and biological surfaces and interfaces using nonlinear optical spectroscopy, sum frequency generation vibrational spectroscopy. We have successfully elucidated polymer surface restructuring behaviors in water, buried polymer/solid interface structures in situ, antifouling mechanisms of polymer surfaces, molecular structures of semiconducting polymer materials in microelectronics and solar cells, conformations and orientations of membrane peptides and proteins, surface immobilized peptide and enzyme behavior, molecular interactions between biological molecules and 2D materials like graphene and MoS2, interfacial behavior of drug molecules, and nanomaterial-model cell membrane interactions. My research is highly interdisciplinary.

What are the major challenges facing your field today?

The development of more complex interfacial systems requires the fundamental understanding of the structures and functions of such systems. Unfortunately, this is very challenging. For a complex interface, for example, a biological interface, many factors could affect its structure and function. It is necessary to probe such a complex interface in situ in real time at the molecular level to provide fundamental understanding. To do so, advanced methodologies and new techniques need to be developed, and a multi-faceted and interdisciplinary approach needs to be utilized, which poses challenges to scientists developing and studying interfaces.

Anything else you’d like readers to know about you?

I have been in the U.S. since 1993. With my Ph.D. and postdoc training (both at Berkeley) and my entire faculty career (at the University of Michigan) in the U.S., I am very familiar with the education/research/publication system in the U.S. With my BS (at Peking University) and MS (at Chinese Academy of Sciences) training in China, and my close research connections with China, I am also very familiar with the education/research/publication system in China.

Do you have a recent paper in an ACS journal that you’d like to highlight?

Monitoring Antimicrobial Mechanisms of Surface-Immobilized Peptides in Situ
Langmuir, 2018, 34 (5), pp 2057–2062
DOI: 10.1021/acs.langmuir.7b03668

In this paper, for the first time, we studied molecular interactions between surface immobilized antimicrobial peptides and live bacteria with surface sensitive nonlinear optical spectroscopy and fluorescence microscopy. By doing so, we could study structure and function of the interface in situ at the same time. We found that the electrostatic interaction is the most important fundamental mechanism for surface-immobilized peptides to kill bacteria.
***

Jingcheng Hao, Langmuir

What do you hope to bring to your journal?

With the rapid growth of nano-related fields, colloid and interface science have been used to explain “how” and “why” nanomaterials behave differently than macro-materials. My goal is to broaden the scope of the journal in order to serve the interdisciplinary community of scientists from diverse nano-related fields, and thereby combine the fundamentals of colloid and interface science with the massive promise of nanomaterials to increase the journal’s impact.

Describe your current research.

Our research focuses on colloid and interface science, including surfactants in solution and on interfaces, nanoengineering of colloidal particles, and bio-nano interactions for drug delivery.

What are the major challenges facing your field today?

Langmuir is a renowned historical journal focused on fundamental studies of interface-dominated structures, and their properties and functions. So the major challenges in colloid and interface science are how to bridge the fundamental findings of colloid and interface science with translational research, and there are great opportunities to develop this area.

Anything else you’d like readers to know about you?

I received my Ph.D. in 1995 from Lanzhou Institute of Chemical Physics,  Chinese Academy of Science. Between 1998 and 2002, I worked as a Daiko-Foundation Fellow at Nagoya University in Japan, an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow at Bayreuth University in Germany, and a Research Support Specialist at The State University of New York at Stony Brook, in the U.S., respectively. Since the beginning of 2003, I have worked as a full professor at Shandong University in China. Currently, I am the Director of the Key Laboratory of Colloid and Interface Chemistry of the Ministry of Education and the dean of the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Shandong University.

Do you have a recent paper in an ACS journal that you’d like to highlight?

Phase Structure Transition and Properties of Salt-Free Phosphoric Acid/Non-ionic Surfactants in Water
Langmuir, 2016, 32, 8366−8373
DOI: 10.1021/acs.langmuir.6b01596
***

Glenn Fredrickson, Macromolecules

What do you hope to bring to your journal?

I hope to continue the high standards of Macromolecules as a venue for the most exciting and original results in the field of polymer science. Theory has traditionally been a strong component. As that is my specialty, I want to attract the very best contributions in both paper-and-pencil theory and numerical simulations to the journal.

Describe your current research.

I am continuing to push the development of field-theoretic simulation methodologies as they have enabled simulations of dense systems of long polymers on length scales that have heretofore been inaccessible. I am currently very excited about a new type of polarizable field theory that appears useful in simulating inhomogeneous ion-containing polymers such as ionomers and polymeric ionic liquids. We have also recently resurrected an old “coherent states” field theory representation by Edwards and Freed that we think will be exceptionally useful in developing quantitative models of supramolecular polymer assembly.

What are the major challenges facing your field today?

As a theorist, I find it frustrating that our tools to make quantitative predictions capable of significantly accelerating polymer materials design are so limited. Atomistic simulations embed the requisite physics but can address only a minuscule component of the space-time continuum necessary to understand practical phenomena and properties such as semicrystalline polymer morphology, multiphase polymer rheology, and nonlinear mechanics. Systematic coarse-graining methods are advancing, but often run the risk of eliminating important physics, such as polymer entanglement. Until we get much better at quantitatively linking models across scales, the “Materials Genome” dream of first-principles computational design of polymeric materials will remain just that — a dream.

Do you have a recent paper in an ACS journal that you’d like to highlight?

Field-Theoretic Simulations of Fluctuation-Stabilized Aperiodic “Bricks-and-Mortar” Mesophase in Miktoarm Star Block Copolymer/Homopolymer Blends
Macromolecules, 2017, 50 (16), pp 6263–6272
DOI: 10.1021/acs.macromol.7b01106

This paper nicely demonstrates the power of field-theoretic simulations, where we can tease out the structure and thermodynamic behavior in complex polymer alloys using microscopy-relevant cell sizes in excess of a micron!

Get stories like this one in your inbox every month. Sign up for a custom newsletter from ACS Axial.

If you have comments or questions for the author of this post, please e-mail: Axial@acs.org.