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P. Thomas Vernier

P. Thomas Vernier, Ph.D. - Research Associate Professor
Research Interests:

Molecular dynamics simulations of biomolecular structures in electrical fields; silicon platforms for nanoelectronics, bioelectronics, photonics and plasmonics; response of biological systems to ultra-short, high-power, low-energy (perturbative) electrical pulses; direct interfacing of cellular and tissue-level biological systems with CMOS integrated circuits built in standard commercial technologies; engineering of nanoscale structures (carbon nanotubes and semiconductor nanocrystal quantum dots) for use as environmental monitors (temperature, pH, small and large molecule concentrations); development of experimental pulsed power systems and nano- and microfabricated electrode chambers and microfluidic assemblies for fundamental investigations in molecular biology and cellular physiology, and for applications in medical diagnostics and therapeutics.


Biographical Information:

P. Thomas Vernier received his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern Californa in 2004.  He is the Engineering Manager of MOSIS at the University of Southern California (USC) Information Sciences Institute, and Research Associate Professor in the Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical Engineering at USC. His research and industrial experience includes ultraviolet microscopy of S-adenosylmethionine metabolism in the yeast Rhodotorula glutinis, molecular biology of the temperature-sensitive host restriction of bacterial viruses in Pseudomonas aeruginosa, environmental gas analysis, wide-band instrumentation data recording, physical and electrical characterization and modeling of semiconductor and microelectromechanical devices, and investigations of responses of biological cells and tissues to electric fields. As Engineering Manager, he is responsible for MOSIS technical staff activities, including wafer electrical test and software-database support for customer and vendor interfaces, business operations, and integrated circuit design checking and preparation for fabrication. In independent bioelectrics research, Vernier currently concentrates on the effects of nanosecond, megavolt-per-meter electric fields on biological systems, with applications in cancer therapeutics, combining experimental observations with molecular dynamics simulations, and on the integration of cellular and biomolecular sensors, carbon nanotubes, and quantum dots with commercial integrated electronic circuit fabrication processes. 

Vernier is also a member of the American Chemical Society, American Society for Microbiology, Bioelectrochemical Society, Bioelectromagnetics Society, Biophysical Society, and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.


Research Centers and Institutes: