Welcoming New Faculty

Posted on


The UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry would like to welcome Ellen Sletten, who will join our department as an Assistant Professor.

Prof. Sletten’s research will focus on the areas of Analytical Chemistry, Biophysics, Materials & Nanoscience, and Organic Chemistry.  She will take up residency in the department in January 2016.

Prof. Sletten received her B.S. in Chemistry from Stonehill College in 2006 where she worked in the laboratory of Prof. Louis Liotta on the synthesis of alkaloid glycosidase inhibitors. During her undergraduate education, she also performed research in Prof. Kara Bren’s group at the University of Rochester and Prof. Neil Thomas’s group at the University of Nottingham. Prof. Sletten pursued her Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley with Prof. Carolyn Bertozzi where she received an ACS Division of Organic Chemistry Fellowship. Her thesis work involved the optimization and development of bioorthogonal chemistries and their subsequent applications in labeling living systems. Upon graduation in 2011, Prof. Sletten joined the laboratory of Prof. Tim Swager at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow where she worked with soft fluorous materials for use in fluorescent sensors.

Sletten Figure 0

The SlettenGroup will exploit the unique properties of fluorinated materials to develop new diagnostic and therapeutic technologies. Research within the group will involve an interdisciplinary mix of organic synthesis, fluorous chemistry, chemical biology, nanomedicine, supramolecular chemistry, polymer synthesis, photophysics and pharmacology. Through the course of our work, we will develop new light-activated theranostics, efficient polymeric drug delivery scaffolds, and novel chemistries for the bioorthogonal chemical reporter strategy. Additionally, we will gain fundamental insight into the intriguing properties of perfluorinated compounds and their interactions with biological systems.