Professor Leary moved to Purdue in 2005 and became an endowed Professor of Nanomedicine and a tenured full professor in the Department of Basic Medical Sciences and the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering. He is also a Member of the Bindley Biosciences Center, Birck Nanotechnology Center, and the Oncological Science at Discovery Park where his laboratories are located, and also a Member of the Purdue Cancer Center. He serves as Scientific Director of two University-wide and State-wide (CTSI-Clinical Translational Science Institute) shared facilities, the Flow Cytometry and Cell Separation Facility and the Bionanotechnology Shared Facility). He also serves as the Principal Investigator of the KIST (Korean Institute of Science and Technology)-Purdue Global Research Laboratory Program in Nanomedicine and Molecular Imaging. Recently he was elected a Fellow of the AIMBE (American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering), the highest honorary for biomedical engineers in the United States, for his pioneering work in the invention of high-speed flow cytometry and rare-event analysis as well as his more recent work in the design of bionanomedical systems.
From 1994-2005 Dr. Leary was a tenured Professor of Internal Medicine, Pathology, Biophysics, Microbiology & Immunology, and Human Biological Chemistry & Genetics as well as an Assistant Director of the Biomedical Engineering Center, an Affiliated Senior Scientist in the Sealy Centers for Molecular Sciences, Structural Biology, Cancer Cell Biology, Vaccine Development, and the Program in Bioinformatics. He also served as Assistant Vice President of Research for Advanced Technology. From 1978-1994 Dr. Leary was an Assistant and Associate Professor of Experimental Pathology and Pediatrics for at the University of Rochester Medical School in Rochester, NY.
Dr. Leary's original training includes an aerospace engineering degree from M.I.T., post-graduate work in space physics and a Ph.D. in Biophysics from Penn State University with a postdoctoral fellowship at Los Alamos National Laboratory. His research has been funded by NIH for more than 25 years, with additional funding from NASA, NSF, DOD, USDA, and private foundations. He is the holder of 8 U.S. Patents, with 6 currently pending and is the author of more than 110 papers in the fields of high-throughput technologies, minimal residual disease monitoring, developmental immunology, cancer research, and nanomedicine. Dr. Leary's current funded research spans four general areas: (1) development of new high-throughput flow and image cytometry technologies for rare circulating tumor and cancer stem cells, (2) development of portable, point-of-care BioMEMS microfluidic cytometry systems for blood analysis and microbial pathogen detection, (3) high-throughput isolation and re-engineering of adult human stem cells at the single cell level for regenerative medicine, and (4) development of smart nano-engineered, single-cell drug/gene delivery systems for nanomedicine.