Abhinav Acharya, PhD

Assistant Professor
Biomedical Engineering
Case School of Engineering
Cancer Imaging Program
Case Comprehensive Cancer Center

I have expertise in ImmuneEngineering, Immunometabolism, drug delivery and biomaterials.

My PhD research focused on the development of novel biomaterials for the development of immunotherapies. Specifically, I was trained at the University of Florida in biomaterials-based modulation of dendritic cells and the development of vaccines for type 1 diabetes. My expertise includes controlled-release formulations, polymer-based particle generations, generation of high-throughput lab-on-chip devices, and profiling of immune cells from different organs. This research resulted in 15 publications (e.g. journals - Biomaterials, PNAS), and 2 patents.

I continued my research at Georgia Institute of Technology and the University of California, Berkeley, where I utilized chemistry tools to synthesize novel small molecules and polymers for drug delivery and detection of infectious diseases, which led to 7 publications (e.g. journal -
Adv.Mat.) and 2 patents. At the University of Pittsburgh, I developed tools during my training to generate novel biomaterial systems for developing anti-inflammatory immunotherapies for dry eye disease and hind-limb allotransplants, and pro-inflammatory immunotherapies for cancer treatment (melanoma). I also generated new biomaterials for cytosolic delivery of antibiotics and analyzed the effect on different types of immune cells in mice. The work at the University of Pittsburgh to date has led to 15 publications (e.g. PNAS, Science Adv., Adv.func.mat.), and 2 patents.

Currently, we are developing metabolite-based biomaterials for modulating the function of immune cells by directly controlling their energy metabolism. We have utilized these technologies to generate robust immune responses in mice models of multiple sclerosis (EAE), traumatic brain injury, rheumatoid arthritis, and melanoma. We now have published articles and filed for patents on these technologies.

Research Information

Research Interests

Biomaterials for Immunometabolism and Immune engineering. Immune Engineering is a field that brings together the areas of engineering and immunology to harness the power of the immune system and resolve different diseases. Immunometabolism is a field that is at the interface of immunology and metabolism. Metabolic processes play a pivotal role in governing the immune cell responses in both healthy individuals in inflammation, infection, cancer, autoimmune disorders, and obesity. Notably, metabolites originating from the mammalian cells, microbiota and infectious agents influence the behavior of the immune cells and overall immune responses. Based on these ideas our lab is heralding innovative treatments for chronic inflammatory conditions, autoimmune diseases, and cancer by developing novel immunotherapies. Acharya lab works on these areas to address a variety of diseases including Melanoma, Ovarian Cancer, Traumatic Brain Injury, Rheumatoid Arthrits, Osteoarthrtis, Weight loss, Pain dynamics among others. Our long-term goals are to develop translational biomaterials that can engineer the metabolism of immune cells and develop immunotherapies. To achieve these goals we develop biomaterials that can effectively modulate the function of immune cells by modulating different metabolic pathways and affect disease outcomes.


1. Inamdar S, Suresh AP, Mangal JL, Ng ND, Sundem A, Wu C, Lintecum K, Thumsi A, Khodaei T, Halim M, Appel N, Jaggarapu MMCS, Esrafili A, Curtis M, Acharya AP, “Rescue of dendritic cells from glycolysis inhibition improves cancer immunotherapy in mice” Nature Communications, 14, 5333, 2023.

2. Inamdar S, Suresh AP, Mangal JL, Ng ND, Sundem A, Behbahani HS, Rubino Jr. TE, Yaron JR, Khodaei T, Green M, Curtis M, Acharya AP, “Succinate in the tumor microenvironment affects tumor growth and modulates tumor associated macrophages”, Biomaterials, 2023.

3. JL Mangal, Inamdar S, Le T, Shi X, Curtis M, Gu H, Acharya AP, “Inhibition of glycolysis in the presence of antigen generates suppressive antigen-specific responses and restrains rheumatoid arthritis in mice”, Biomaterials, 2021 Aug 20;277:121079.

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