David Walt, PhD

David Walt

University Professor of Chemistry



BS, Chemistry, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
PhD, Chemical Biology, SUNY, Stony Brook
Postdoctoral Training, MIT


Campus: Medford
Office: Pearson Hall
Laboratory: 200 Boston Avenue, Suite 4700 & Pearson 3

Contact Information

Office Phone: 617-627-3470
E-mail   Send an e-mail


Research Website  Lab Research Page
Recent Publications  Abstract in PubMed

Graduate Programs

Biochemistry, Cell, Molecular & Developmental Biology, Genetics, Neuroscience


Research Synopsis

Our research effort employs optical fiber microarrays for the detection and analysis of single molecules. Single enzyme molecules are enclosed with fluorogenic substrate in an array of thousands of individually addressable microchambers etched into a glass optical fiber bundle. The large array size provides excellent statistics. The substrate turnover in the microchambers can be monitored with fluorescence microscopy. The results of these experiments provide mechanistic insight into enzyme mechanisms. In addition to these fundamental studies, they have also developed single molecule methods for high sensitivity DNA and protein detection. In another project the Walt lab is investigating the limits to creating high-density sensing arrays containing thousands of microsensors and nanosensors and are preparing arrays to perform high density nucleic acid and protein analysis. One application of this effort is an integrated diagnostic platform for performing medical diagnostics using saliva as a sample instead of blood. The arrays can also be used to study living cells, both as cell populations as well as individual cells, and analyze the contents of individual cells by integrating microfluidics with single molecule detection. They are also studying the behavior of large numbers of cells to understand the distribution of cell behaviors in a population.


Lab Members

Limor Cohen, PhD Student in Chemistry   Send an e-mail
Trinh Dinh, PhD Student in Chemistry Send an e-mail
Barrett Duan, Postdoctoral Scholar Send an e-mail
Payel Ghatak, PhD Student in Genetics Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Mark Hartman, Postdoctoral Scholar Send an e-mail
Sarah Hwang, PhD Student in Biochemistry Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Prarthana Khanna, PhD Student in Genetics Send an e-mail  Lab Research Page
Maia Kipman, MD, PhD Student in Neuroscience Send an e-mail Lab Research Page
Xiang Li, Postdoctoral Scholar Send an e-mail 
Wang Xu, Postdoctoral Scholar Send an e-mail
Liangxia Xie, Postdoctoral Scholar  Send an e-mail

Apply to the Sackler School


The priority application deadlines are as follows:

December 1: Basic Science Division PhD Programs

February 15: Building Diversity in Biomedical Sciences

March 31: Post-Baccalaureate Research Program

May 1: Clinical & Translational Science, MS in Pharmacology & Drug Development

June 15: Online Certificate in Fundamentals of Clinical Care Research