Professor Omar A. Saleh is a physicist and materials scientist with broad expertise in biomolecular science. Saleh received his B.S. in Physics from MIT in 1997, and his Ph.D. in Physics from Princeton in 2003. He was a post-doctoral fellow at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris, France, developing single-molecule experimental techniques to study motor protein/DNA interactions. He came to UC Santa Barbara in 2005, where he is now a full professor in the Materials Department, with a minority appointment in the Biomolecular Science and Engineering Program. He served as Director of BMSE from 2013 to 2017, and was an elected member of the Executive Committee of the Division of Biological Physics of the American Physical Society from 2013 to 2016. His research achievements were recognized by a Bessel Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Society in 2017, and he was selected as a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2019.
Saleh's research is focused on the molecular physics underlying biological systems, with particular experience in nucleic acids, protein/DNA interactions, biomolecular elasticity, and self-assembled biomolecular systems.