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Natasha Wiles, Ph.D.


Ph.D. Developmental and Molecular Biology, Virginia Polytechnic Institute


Michael Piehler, Ph.D.


My name is Natasha Wiles and I grew up in Carmel, Indiana with a supportive family whose values in education and learning became fundamental to me. I received my undergraduate degree in Psychology, with an emphasis on cognitive learning, and minored in Animal Behavior and Biology. It was my participation in advanced Molecular Biology and Genetics courses taught by interactive and dynamic professors that encouraged me to attend graduate school at the Department of Biological Sciences at Virginia Tech under the guidance of Charles L. Rutherford. At Virginia Tech, my research focused upon analyzing the transcriptional regulation of the 5′-nucleotidase gene in Dictyostelium discoideum by identifying potential sites on the promoter to which regulatory proteins interact and then isolating and characterizing proteins of interest by column chromatography.

Following my graduate career, I became a part of the SPIRE community at UNC-Chapel Hill. Under the advisement of Joseph M. DeSimone, I am involved in an interdisciplinary research project with the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Pharmacology, where I am working with PRINT (Particle Replication In Non-wetting Templates) to fabricate nanoparticles designed with specific targeting ligands and pharmaceutical cargo, to analyze the biodegradation attributes and release kinetics, and to study the and cellular uptake of the nanoparticles in NIH 3T3 murine cells.


  • Spring 2008
    • General Biology (with lab): Winston Salem State University
  • Fall 2007
    • General Biology: Winston Salem State University


  • Wiles, K.B., Wiles, N.S., Herlihy, K.P., Maynor, B.W., Rolland, J.P., DeSimone, J.M. (2006) Soft lithography using perfluorinate polyether molds and PRINT technology for fabrication of 3-D arrays on glass substrates. International Society for Optical Engineering. 6151-119.