Ethan S. Lippmann, Ph.D.


Academic appointments

Assistant Professor, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering (secondary)

Assistant Professor, Chemical and Physical Biology Program (secondary)

Member, Vanderbilt Center for Stem Cell Biology

Training faculty, Vanderbilt Brain Institute



Postdoctoral Fellow, Wisconsin Institute for Discovery (2012-2015)      

Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, University of Wisconsin (2006-2012)      

B.S., Chemical Engineering, University of Illinois (2002-2006)


Office: 303 Olin Hall                                                                                   

Phone: 615.322.3961                                                      



Dr. Lippmann graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering in 2006. He next trained as a Dahlke/Hougen graduate fellow in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison under the supervision of Dr. Eric Shusta. During this time, he pioneered the use of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) for constructing in vitro models of the blood-brain barrier. After defending his thesis in 2012, he transitioned to the Wisconsin Institute for Discovery (WID) to conduct research on spinal cord tissue engineering in the laboratory of Dr. Randolph Ashton. He spent three years in the WID establishing novel paradigms for generating neural cells from hPSCs using both traditional differentiation routes and surface engineering strategies, and during this time he was supported by a postdoctoral fellowship from the Wisconsin Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Center and a National Research Service Award from the NIH. In 2015, Dr. Lippmann joined the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Vanderbilt University to continue his efforts in the fields of neurovascular modeling and therapeutic discovery. His current honors include a NARSAD Young Investigator Award (Brain and Behavior Research Foundation), a Ben Barres Early Career Acceleration Award (Chan Zuckerberg Initiative), and a CAREER Award (NSF). He has also received his department’s teaching excellence award for his role in undergraduate education. When not in the lab, he is an avid volleyball player and enjoys spending time with his wife Krupa Patel-Lippmann, who is a faculty member in the Department of Radiology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, and their children Evan and Kira.