Brian CunninghamProf. Brian T. Cunningham, President and Founder

Brian Cunningham is a Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he has been a faculty member since 2004.  His group focuses on the development of nanophotonic surfaces, plastic-based nanofabrication methods, and novel instrumentation approaches for biodetection with applications in pharmaceutical screening, life science research, environmental monitoring, disease diagnostics, and point-of-care patient testing.  At Illinois, Prof. Cunningham serves as the Interim Director of the Micro and Nanotechnology Laboratory, and as Director of the NSF Center for Agricultural, Biomedical, and Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology (CABPN).  Prof. Cunningham was the founder and the Chief Technical Officer of SRU Biosystems (Woburn, MA), a life science tools company that provided high sensitivity plastic-based optical biosensors, instrumentation, and software to the pharmaceutical, academic research, genomics, and proteomics communities, which was sold to X-Body Biosciences in 2011.   Prof. Cunningham was recognized with the IEEE Sensors Council 2010 Technical Achievement Award for the invention, development, and commercialization of biosensors utilizing photonic crystals, and as the IEEE Sensors Council Distinguished Lecturer for 2013. He is a Fellow of the IEEE and the AIMBE.

Prior to founding SRU Biosystems in June, 2000, Dr. Cunningham was the Manager of Biomedical Technology at Draper Laboratory (Cambridge, MA), where he directed R&D projects aimed at utilizing defense-related technical capabilities for medical applications. In addition, Dr. Cunningham served as Group Leader for MEMS Sensors at Draper Laboratory, where he directed a group performing applied research on microfabricated inertial sensors, acoustic sensors, optical switches, microfluidics, tissue engineering, and biosensors. Concurrently, he was an Associate Director of the Center for Innovative Minimally Invasive Therapy (CIMIT), a Boston-area medical technology consortium, where he led the Advanced Technology Team on Microsensors. Before working at Draper Laboratory, Dr. Cunningham spent 5 years at the Raytheon Electronic Systems Division developing advanced infrared imaging array technology for defense and commercial applications. Dr. Cunningham earned his BS, MS, and PhD degrees in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Illinois.  His thesis research was in the field of optoelectronics and compound semiconductor material science, where he contributed to the development of crystal growth techniques that are now widely used for manufacturing solid state lasers, and high frequency amplifiers for wireless communication.