Dr. Xiaocen Lu received her B.Sc. In Chemistry (2015) from Nankai University in China. She then moved to Canada and obtained her Ph.D in Chemical Biology (2020) from University of Alberta. During her Ph.D program, Xiaocen had a strong interest in engineering genetically encoded fluorescent tools to control and monitor biological activities. She used a variety of techniques including fluorescent spectroscopy, protein engineering, live cell fluorescence microscopy, to evolve and characterize fluorescent tools with new capabilities.

She joined Dr. Peter Unrau’s group as a postdoctoral fellow in August 2021. Her current research interests focus on selection of fluorogenic RNA aptamers and development of novel screening methods. She aims to engineer multi-color tools for RNA imaging and detection applications.