Associate Professor

Emily Day, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Ammon Pinizzotto Biopharmaceutical Innovation Center
590 Avenue 1743, Ste 401
Newark, DE 19713
P: 302-533-8331

Lab Website


  • Ph.D. in Bioengineering, 2011, Rice University
  • B.S. in Physics, Minor in Mathematics, 2006, University of Oklahoma
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, 2011-2013, Department of Chemistry, Northwestern University


  • Nanomedicine
  • Gene regulation
  • Photothermal therapy
  • Drug delivery
  • Biomimicry


The Day Lab develops innovative nanomaterials that enable high precision therapy of cancer and other diseases, and elucidates how nanoparticle architecture impacts function by studying nano/bio interactions from the subcellular to whole organism level. The nanoparticles  we develop enable high precision by: (1) inhibiting molecules that are expressed exclusively in diseased cells through nucleic acid or antibody delivery, (2) facilitating light-triggered release of therapeutic payloads, or (3) using cell-derived membranes as coatings to avoid detection by the immune system and deliver cargo to specific cells. Our research is at the forefront of nanomedicine, and is advancing the field by revealing important information regarding the design and implementation of nanoparticles for therapeutic applications. In the future, the technologies we develop may transform the way we manage diseases such as cancer, blood disorders, pregnancy-related conditions, and more.

For information about joining the lab, please email Dr. Day outlining your specific interests and attach a copy of your CV.


For a complete publication list, check Dr. Day’s Google Scholar.

Riley RS, Day ES. Frizzled7 antibody-functionalized nanoshells enable multivalent binding for Wnt signaling inhibition in triple negative breast cancer cells. Small. 2017; 13(26): 1700544.

Riley RS, Dang MN, Billingsley MM, Abraham B, Gundlach L, Day ES. Evaluating the mechanisms of light-triggered siRNA release from nanoshells for temporal control over gene regulation. Nano Letters. 201818(6): 3565-3570.

Melamed JR, Kreuzberger NL, Goyal R, Day ES. Spherical nucleic acid architecture can improve the efficacy of polycation-mediated siRNA delivery. Molecular Therapy-Nucleic Acids. 2018; 12: 207-219.

Riley RS*, O’Sullivan RK*, Potocny AM, Rosenthal J#Day ES#. Evaluating nanoshells and a potent biladiene photosensitizer for dual photothermal and photodynamic therapy of triple negative breast cancer cells. Nanomaterials. 2018; 8: 658.

Valcourt DM, Dang MN, Day ES. IR820-loaded PLGA nanoparticles for photothermal therapy of triple-negative breast cancer. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A. 2019; 107A: 1702-1712.

Kapadia CH, Ioele SA, Day ES#. Layer-by-layer assembled PLGA nanoparticles carrying miR-34a cargo inhibit the proliferation and cell cycle progression of triple-negative breast cancer cells. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A. 2020; 108A: 601-603.

Wang J*, Potocny AM*, Rosenthal J#Day ES#. Gold nanoshell-linear tetrapyrrole conjugates for near infrared-activated dual photodynamic and photothermal therapies. ACS Omega. 2020; 5(1): 926-940.

Valcourt DM, Dang MN, Scully MA, Day ES. Nanoparticle-mediated co-delivery of Notch-1 antibodies and ABT-737 as a potent treatment strategy for triple-negative breast cancer. ACS Nano. 2020; 14(3): 3378-3388.

Valcourt DM, Day ES. Dual regulation of miR-34a and Notch signaling in triple-negative breast cancer by antibody/miRNA nanocarriers. Molecular Therapy-Nucleic Acids. 2020; 21: 290-298.

Dang MN, Gomez Casas C, Day ES#. Photoresponsive miR-34a/nanoshell conjugates enable light-triggered gene regulation to impair the function of triple-negative breast cancer cells. Nano Letters. 2021; 21(1): 68-76.

Irvin-Choy NS*, Nelson KM,* Dang MN, Gleghorn JP#Day ES#. Gold nanoparticle biodistribution in pregnant mice following intravenous administration varies with gestational age. Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology, and Medicine. 2021; 36: 102412.