Female working in a lab


Welcome to a world of interdisciplinarity, tackling the challenges of the day and imagining a better future!

The Applied Virus and Complex Biologics Bioprocessing Lab (AKA the Aucoin Lab) is a part of the BioWorks Team in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Waterloo, a University situated on the traditional territory of ‎the Attawandaron, Anishinaabeg and Haudenosaunee peoples. 

Students and trainees are the lifeblood of our group. We encourage everyone to view our group as a team that helps each other meet their full potential and reach their own personal goals. Trainees from our group typically have exposure to industry and other research groups on campus and around the world. Students have pursued start-up opportunities and even careers while undertaking their graduate work within our group. Working in this group has led to opportunities in academia, start-ups as well as with large pharmaceutical companies.


Our group is always recruiting. We're proud to be diverse and welcome people of all backgrounds, genders, etc. We strive to be supportive and collaborative, caring about not just our success but the success of everyone that is part of our group. All graduate students require funding, either through my grants or through their personal scholarships. As funding is not unlimited, we may not be able to accommodate all requests to join the group, but we try. If you are Canadian or a Canadian Permanent Resident, there are a lot of opportunities that exist for you to pursue graduate studies. Students with citizenship other than Canadian, have been both supported through scholarships from countries where they hold citizenship or through research assistantships from my grants. We also support increasing indigenous (First Nations, Inuit, and Métis) and black representation in academia and urge those that identify as part of these groups to apply to the Indigenous Black Engineering Technology (IBET) PhD Project (IBET PhD Project) for their IBET Momentum Fellowship. Career leaves (e.g., parental leaves, sick leaves) are to be expected as part of many of our lives - we understand that this can intimidate and even scare some to return to academia. If you are interested in our research area and would like to join our team, apply!


Although we tackle many different topics, it has always been my goal as an academic to actively pursue the control of biological systems from the standpoint of an engineer. Through my work, I recognized that neither pure biological control nor pure process control can effectively achieve optimal performance. Therefore, with the hopes of achieving holistic outcomes, I have dedicated my efforts to both fronts.

Within our group you will be able to interact with many other "bio-chemical engineering" groups, including the Ward lab, the Slavcev lab, the Ingalls lab, the Budman lab, the Abukhdeir lab, the Euler and the Liu lab.

Collectively, we provide support for tackling the challenges that face us.

The YouTube video below was made back in 2011. Other than I was lot younger, and I was still an Assistant Professor at the time, virus-like particles (VLPs) still play a large role in our research program and what I say in the video is especially relevant to today's world, 13 years later.

Remote video URL
Remote video URL


Tuesday, July 4, 2023

Twitter Content and More

Apparently Twitter is no longer free - so here is a recap of what has been posted there in the last 6 months!

Thursday, January 12, 2023

A New Year and A New Term

First, big CONGRATULATIONS to Debbie Pushparjah and Andrew Ng for both defending their MSc in Pharmacy last term! Very proud of these two individuals who produced great theses on working with novel Virus-Like Particles.

Second, Happy New Year! Can't wait to see what our group will accomplish in 2023!

It seems like the news section of this website has been a little forgotten. A lot of the news from the lab in the last six months has been shared via twitter @AppliedVirus. Over the last 6 months we have strengthened out group having had 4 PhD candidates from our group successfully complete their comprehensive exams. The group has also published a number of manuscripts, which is also great. A special shout-out to Matt Patton who joined our team for the summer and worked as a research assistant full time.