Ayse Asatekin synthesizes novel membranes that enable recycling of water

Ayse Asatekin

Next-generation wastewater filtration membrane licensed to Tufts start-up ZwitterCo, Inc.



  • Zwitterion-based filtration membranes for pretreatment of wastewater upstream of expensive reverse osmosis filtration systems

Why it matters

  • Lower-cost wastewater recycling with less downtime
  • Better anti-fouling characteristics
  • Longer operation at elevated flow levels
  • Widely applicable to streams from various sectors, including wastewater from energy production, the food and beverage industry, and textile production

Lead faculty

  • Ayse Asatekin

How it happened

  • Research funded by the National Science Foundation
  • Venture developed in Tufts University’s M.S. in Innovation & Management Program


  • ZwitterCo, Inc., won first place in the General/High-Tech Track of the 2018 Tufts $100K New Ventures Competition, won a MassCEC Catalyst Grant, and won an NSF STTR award in collaboration with the Asatekin Laboratory
  • Member of Greentown Labs
  • Raised over $1M in seed financing
  • Selected for 2019 accelerator cohort of Imagine H2O