Abigail N. Koppes

Associate Professor,  Chemical Engineering
Affiliated Faculty,  Bioengineering


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Research Focus

Bioelectric medicine, development of novel interventions and tissue engineered platforms for nerve regeneration and repair, body-on-a-chip for enteric-gut interactions


Joined the Chemical Engineering Department in Fall 2014.

The main focus of the Advanced Biomaterials for NeuroEngineering Laboratory (ABNEL) is advancing treatments for persons suffering from debilitating disorders and injuries of the central and peripheral nervous system. Using a combinatorial approach, we seek to create therapeutic strategies for improved nerve guidance channels that incorporate biomaterial manufacturing, biophysical (optogenetics) cues, structural (nanotopography) cues, and/or biochemical (cytokine) stimulation to modulate neuronal and non-neuronal support cell behavior. We are interested in probing the underlying mechanisms of neural growth and regeneration while engineering future modalities for neural tissue engineering applications.

Through tissue engineering of the enteric nervous system, the ‘Brain in the Gut,’ we hope to improve drug discovery platforms and regenerative medicine interventions for the millions of people suffering from disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, such as irritable bowel diseases. This work will combine primary small intestinal organoid culture with neuro-engineering techniques to recapitulate this complex biological system. Ultimately, we aim to understand the underlying mechanisms of cellular responses to engineered systems and their native biological niches towards rationally designed therapies. Our research utilizes techniques from bioengineering, chemical engineering, materials science, and cellular, molecular, and systems biology.


  • B.S. (Biomedical Engineering) Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 2007
  • M.S. (Biomedical Engineering) Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 2010
  • PhD (Biomedical Engineering) Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 2013

Honors & Awards

  • 2021 National Science Foundation CAREER Award
  • 2020 Rita Schaffer Young Investigator Award
  • 2020 Young Innovator of Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering (BMES Society)
  • NIH National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering Trailblazer Award for New and Early Stage Investigators

Research Overview

Bioelectric medicine, development of novel interventions and tissue engineered platforms for nerve regeneration and repair, body-on-a-chip for enteric-gut interactions

Advanced Biosystems for Neuroengineering Laboratory

Research in the Advanced Biosystems for Neuroengineering Laboratory (ABNEL) focuses on neural engineering and the interface between neurons and surrounding tissues. Specifically ABNEL develops novel and transformative devices, biomaterials, and biophysical-based therapies for this aims. Current work centers on the gut, heart, and central/peripheral nervous system.

Advanced Biosystems for Neuroengineering Lab

Selected Research Projects

Department Research Areas

Selected Publications

  • Bindas, Adam J., Kulkarni, Subhash, Koppes, Ryan A.Koppes, Abigail N. (2021). Parkinson’s Disease and the Gut: Models of an Emerging Relationship. Acta Biomaterialia, 10.1016/J.ACTBIO.2021.03.071
  • Diaz Vera, David, Soucy, Jonathan R., Lee, Audrey, Koppes, Ryan A., Koppes, Abigail N. (2021). Light irradiation of peripheral nerve cells: Wavelength impacts primary sensory neuron outgrowth in vitro. Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology B: Biology, 215,112105. 10.1016/J.JPHOTOBIOL.2020.112105
  • Ventre, Daniel M., Cluff, Avery, Gagnon, Christian, Diaz Vera, David, Koppes, Ryan A., Koppes, Abigail N. (2021). The effects of low intensity focused ultrasonic stimulation on dorsal root ganglion neurons and Schwann cells in vitro. Journal of Neuroscience Research, 99(1),374-391. 10.1002/JNR.24700
  • S. Hosic, W. Lake, E. Stas, R. Koppes, D. Breault, S. Murthy, A. Koppes, Cholinergic Activation of Primary Human Derived Intestinal Epithelium does not Ameliorate TNF-α Induced Injury, Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering (Journal of BMES), CMBE 2020 Young Innovator Issue, 2020
  • S. Hosic, M. Puzan, F. Zhou, R. Koppes, D. Breault, S. Murthy, A. Koppes, Rapid Prototyping of a Multilayer Microphysiological System for Primary Human Intestinal Epithelial Culture, ACS Biomaterials Science & Engineering, 2020
  • K. Nichols, R. Koppes, A. Koppes, Recent Advancements in Microphysiological Systems for Neural Development and Disease, Invited Review; Current Opinion in Biomedical Engineering, 2020
  • M. Puzan, S. Hosic, C. Ghio, A.N. Koppes, Enteric Nervous System Regulation of Intestinal Stem Cell Differentiation and Epithelial Monolayer Function, Scientific Reports, 8(1), 2018, 6313
  • D. Ventre, M. Puzan, E. Ashbolt, A.N. Koppes Enhanced Total Neurite Outgrowth and Secondary Branching in Dorsal Root Ganglion Neurons Elicited by Low Intensity Pulsed Ultrasound, Journal of Neural Engineering, 15(4), 2018, 046013


Jan 25, 2023

Announcing Spring 2023 PEAK Experiences Awardees

Several engineering students and science students mentored by COE faculty are recipients of Northeastern’s Spring 2023 PEAK Experiences Awards. Base Camp Awardees Sophia Nguyen COE’26, “Neuromodulation of Motor Cortex’s Response to Different Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Pulse Waveforms” Mentor: Mathew Yarossi, Bouvé, Physical Therapy/Movement/Rehab Science This project seeks to use transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), a noninvasive […]


Dec 07, 2022

NIH Trailblazer Award for Engineering Smarter Gut Metabolites to Affect Human Health

ChE Assistant Professor Benjamin Woolston is leading a $628K NIH Trailerblazer Award with Assistant Professor Ryan Koppes, Associate Professor Abigail Koppes, and Professor Rebecca Carrier for “Engineered Probiotics for Closed-Loop Control of Disease-Associated Gut Metabolites in Gut-On-Chip Models.”


Oct 07, 2022

Announcing Fall 2022 PEAK Experiences Awardees

Several engineering students and science students mentored by COE faculty are recipients of Northeastern’s Fall 2022 PEAK Experiences Awards. This extraordinary group of students is taking on a range of exciting projects, from exploring axolotl limb regeneration to building a snake-inspired robot to understanding accessibility on Broadway. ASCENT AWARDS Justin Almendral COE’24, “Wearable Art” Mentor: […]

Abigail Koppes working in a lab.


Aug 16, 2022

Abigail Koppes: Advancing Technology, Treatment, and Diversity in Biomedical Engineering

Associate Professor Abigail Koppes, chemical engineering, began her career as a Future Faculty Fellow through Northeastern’s ADVANCE Office of Faculty Development. Today she is an associate professor, has two patents, and numerous young investigator recognitions.

professors posing in chemical engineering lab


Aug 11, 2022

GelMA/MeTro Composites for Peripheral Nerve Repair

ChE Associate Professor Abigail Koppes and Assistant Professor Ryan Koppes were awarded a patent for creating “Gelatin/elastin composites for peripheral nerve repair.”

professors posing in chemical engineering lab


Jun 09, 2022

Improving Fluidic Devices for Cell Cultures

ChE Assistant Professor Ryan Koppes and Associate Professor Abigail Koppes were awarded a patent for designing a “Fluidic device and method of assembling same.”

RISE logo


Apr 19, 2022

Congratulations RISE: 2022 Winners

Congratulations to our engineering students who won awards at the RISE:2022 Research, Innovation and Scholarship Expo!

Guohao Dai, Abby Koppes, Ryan Koppes


Apr 04, 2022

$2M NASA Grant To Build Long Lasting Neurovascular Model

BioE Associate Professor Guohao Dai, ChE Associate Professor Abigail Koppes, and ChE Assistant Professor Ryan Koppes received a $2M grant from NASA titled “Bioengineer Long-lasting 3D Neurovascular Microphysiological System to Model Chronic Inflammation-mediated Neurodegeneration”.


Oct 12, 2021

Announcing Fall 2021 PEAK Experiences Awardees

Several engineering students and science students mentored by COE faculty are recipients of Northeastern’s Fall 2021 PEAK Experiences Awards. The PEAK Experiences Awards are a progressively structured sequence of opportunities designed to support learners as they continue climbing to new heights of achievement in undergraduate research and creative endeavor throughout their Northeastern journeys. ASCENT AWARDS […]

David R. Dias Vera

Spotlight Story

Oct 01, 2021

PhD Spotlight: David R. Dias Vera, PhD’20 – Chemical Engineering

Advised by Abigail Koppes, Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering After receiving his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the Universidad Autonoma de Santo Domingo in 2013, David R. Diaz Vera, PhD’20, chemical engineering, worked at Falconbridge Dominicana for almost two years before joining Northeastern University. As a PhD student in the Department of Chemical Engineering […]

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