308 Wilsdorf Hall B015 Wilsdorf Hall 385 McCormick Road
Letteri Lab Website Google Scholar


Rachel A. Letteri is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering.  After obtaining a B.S. in Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering from the University of Notre Dame, she completed a Ph.D. in Polymer Science & Engineering from the University of Massachusetts Amherst under the direction of Professors TODD EMRICK and RYAN HAYWARD.  She then conducted postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Professor KAREN WOOLEY in the Department of Chemistry at Texas A&M University from 2016-2018.  Her research interests include materials involving functional polymers, peptides, and interfacial assemblies with applications in medicine and engineering, among others.  Rachel also enjoys sharing science and engineering with others through education and outreach.

Lab overview

The LETTERI LAB is engineering materials that synergistically combine polymers and peptides to enable productive interactions with living systems and address central challenges in medicine and engineering.  Our specific interests include understanding and exploiting stereochemistry-driven interactions and stimuli-responsive motifs to control materials properties, and using polymers to present and encapsulate peptides in ways that maximize their function.


B.S. Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, University of Notre Dame, 2010

M.S. Polymer Science & Engineering, University of Massachusetts Amherst, 2012

Ph.D. Polymer Science & Engineering, University of Massachusetts Amherst, 2016

Post-Doc Chemistry, Texas A&M University, 2016-2018

Research Interests

Polymer synthesis and characterization
Peptide binding and assembly
Therapeutic peptide delivery

Selected Publications

Buffering effects on the solution behavior and hydrolytic degradation of poly(β-amino ester)s KUENEN, M. K.; MULLIN, J. A.; LETTERI, R. A.
Molecular Engineering of antimicrobial peptide (AMP)-polymer conjugates CUI, Z.; LUO, Q.; BANNON, M. S.; GRAY, V. P.; BLOOM, T. G.; CLORE, M. F.; HUGHES, M. A.;
User-defined, temporal presentation of bioactive molecules on hydrogel substrates using supramolecular coiled coil complexes GREWAL, M. G.; GRAY, V. P.; LETTERI, R. A.; HIGHEY, C.B.
Biomaterials via peptide assembly: Design, characterization, and application in tissue engineering GRAY, V. P.; AMELUNG, C. D.; DUTI, I. J.; LAUDERMILCH, E. G.; LETTERI, R. A.; LAMPE, K. J.
Amphiphilic cross-linked liquid crystalline fluoropolymer-poly(ethylene glycol) coatings for application in challenging conditions: Comparative study between different liquid crystalline comonomers and polymer architectures. ZIGMOND, J. S.; LETTERI, R. A.; WOOLEY, K. L. ACS APPL. MATER. INTERFACES 2016, 8, 33386-33393

Courses Taught

CHE 2215: Material & Energy Balances FALL 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021
CHE 6561: Chemistry for Engineering Functional Soft Materials SPRING 2020, 2022
CHE 3347/6647: Biochemical Engineering SPRING 2021


NSF CAREER Award 2022
included in the RSC Biomaterials Science Emerging Investigators Issue 2021
Thomas E. Hutchinson Award (Trigon Engineering Society) for outreach to students, enthusiastic lectures, obvious love of teaching, and contributions to the Engineering School 2019