Bailey Banach is a 2016-2020 Self Graduate Fellow pursuing a Ph.D. in bioengineering at the University of Kansas. She received a B.S. (2015) in biomedical engineering at the University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA. When Banach was in high school, a friend’s daughter was going to have her eye removed due to a retinoblastoma. This aggressive cancer not only claimed the little girl’s eye, but also her sense of confidence when it came to making friends in kindergarten that year. Banach watched as everything changed when the little girl received an ocular implant that looked identical to a real eye. The smile on that child’s face when she talked about the new friends she made in kindergarten was something that Banach would never forget. Currently focused on immunology engineering, her research involves analyzing and understanding antibody mechanisms in autoimmune diseases, and establishing antigen specific intervention strategies to induce immune tolerance. This line of work has the potential to accelerate the development of new human vaccines and therapeutics.
Mentor: Brandon J. DeKosky, Assistant Professor, Bioengineering