Mehmet Toner

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Mehmet Toner
Born July 1958
Istanbul, Turkey
Residence United States
Nationality Turkish
Fields Cryobiology, Biomedical Engineering
Institutions Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Alma mater Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Istanbul Technical University
Doctoral advisor Ernest G. Cravalho
Doctoral students John Bischof, Professor, Minnesota; Sangeeta Bhatia, Professor and Howard Hughes Medical Investigator, MIT; Jens Karlsson, Professor, Villanova
Other notable students Ulysses J. Balis, Professor and Director-Division of Pathology Informatics, University of Michigan, Albert Folch, Associate Professor, University of Washington (Seattle)
Notable awards ASME YC Fung Faculty Award in Bioengineering, 1994; Whitaker Foundation Special Opportunity Award, 1995; Taplin Faculty Fellow Award given by Harvard and MIT, 1997; Fellow, American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering

Mehmet Toner, PhD is a Turkish biomedical engineer. A professor of surgery at the Harvard Medical School and professor of biomedical engineering at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology (HST), Toner first gained prominence for his theory of intra-cellular ice formation while finishing his PhD in Medical Engineering at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology(MIT). Since then Prof. Toner has made contributions to the specific fields of cryobiology and biopreservation and to the wider field of biomedical engineering in the form of inventions, books, and journal publications.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Toner was born in Istanbul, Turkey in July, 1958. He obtained his undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering at the Istanbul Technical University in 1983, and his master's degree and doctorate in Mechanical Engineering and Medical Engineering at MIT in 1989. Toner worked on his doctorate under Prof. Ernest Cravalho who was one of the first engineering scientists to work on cryobiology and is still a professor of mechanical engineering at MIT.[2]


Dr. Toner's early work focused on understanding cellular injuries during cryopreservation and finding optimum strategies for cell preservation. As part of that work he proposed acetylated trehalose as a novel cryoprotectant.[3][4] His later works include microfluidics, Bio-sensing and dry preservation of mammalian cells.

Prof. Toner currently serves as the Associate Director of the Center for Engineering in Medicine(CEM) located at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Shriners Hospital for Children, as well as the Director of the CEM-affiliated BioMEMS Resource Center. The labs have produced several researchers and continues to train post-doctoral fellows and graduate students from MIT and Harvard University.


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ "Wait not in vain". The Economist. 6 February 2016. Retrieved 11 February 2016. 
  4. ^ Abazari, Alireza (26 June 2015). "Engineered Trehalose Permeable to Mammalian Cells". PLOS. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0130323. Retrieved 11 February 2016.