In the fields of biomaterials and tissue engineering, the ability to modulate cell behavior on surfaces is essential, particularly when attempting to direct cell growth and differentiation, both for in vitro engineered tissue and generating cell sources from progenitors and/or stem cells. A major area of work in tissue engineering is the development of artificial extracellular matrices or scaffolds. The extracellular in vivo is a dynamic entity that often shifts between a composition of one distinct set of components to another. This matrix remodeling is especially common during development, differentiation, and wound repair. A dynamic engineered matrix that emulates this situation in vitro has yet to be developed and would have a huge impact in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. For example, one of the biggest challenges to realizing stem cell therapies is the ability to take a premature cell and differentiate it into the desired phenotype. While soluble factors and static matrices have been examined for accomplishing this goal, the technology that could mimic the developing extracellular matrix, which is known to regulate cell survival, migration, proliferation, and differentiation, has not been developed. The principal investigator aims to create such a dynamic matrix microenvironment that could promote differentiation by mimicking extracellular matrix morphogenesis. Therefore, differentiated cell sources from progenitors and stem cells could be more efficiently obtained, which would have direct impact on promoting and advancing cell therapies, including engineered tissue. This work will be enabled by a novel and innovative, multi-layer format patterning technique developed by the principal investigator.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Office of The Director, National Institutes of Health (OD)
NIH Director’s New Innovator Awards (DP2)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZGM1-NDIA-G (01))
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Basavappa, Ravi
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University of California San Diego
Engineering (All Types)
Schools of Arts and Sciences
La Jolla
United States
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Adam Young, D; Bajaj, Vaibhav; Christman, Karen L (2014) Award winner for outstanding research in the PhD category, 2014 Society for Biomaterials annual meeting and exposition, Denver, Colorado, April 16-19, 2014: Decellularized adipose matrix hydrogels stimulate in vivo neovascularization and adipose formation J Biomed Mater Res A 102:1641-51
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