Tissue Engineering

I develop biotechnologies to address key challenges of in vitro tissue engineering. In particular, I seek to develop methods that can recreate natural structural features in engineered tissues. This includes:

In Situ Endothelialization
This study was led by Dr Liliang Ouyang during his postdoc at Imperial College London. We developed a void-free bioprinting method as a highly efficient, in-situ approach to endothelialization that avoided the need for post-seeding (link: Advanced Functional Materials 2020). This is linked to my research activity in 3D bioprinting.

Acoustic Cell Patterning for Musculoskeletal Tissue Engineering
We used ultrasound standing waves to remotely pattern cells for tissue engineering. This includes the patterning of skeletal myoblasts into collagen-based hydrogels, which was used to engineer muscle tissue with aligned bundles of myotubes and anisotropic tensile properties (link: Advanced Materials 2018). This is linked to my research activity in ultrasound manipulation.

3D Printing “Unprintable” Hydrogel Bioinks
This study was led by Dr Liliang Ouyang during his postdoc at Imperial College London. We developed a new method that used the thermal gelation of gelatin to enable the bioprinting of conventionally “unprintable” hydrogel bioinks for cell culture and tissue engineering (link: Science Advances 2020). This is linked to my research activity in 3D bioprinting.

Casting Hydrogels with Bio-instructive Gradients
This study was led by Dr Chunching Li during his PhD at Imperial College London. We developed a new method to programme gradients of slow-releasing osteogenic morphogens into cellularized hydrogels, which generated integrated osteochondral tissue constructs (link: Advanced Materials 2019). This is linked to my research activity in biomaterials & bioimaging.

Magnetic Patterning of Morphogen Gradients
This study was led by Dr Chunching Li during his PhD at Imperial College London. We developed a new method for magnetically patterning osteogenic growth factors in cellularized hydrogels, which could guide the engineering of osteochondral tissue (link: Biomaterials 2018). This is linked to my research activity in magnetic manipulation.

Droplet Interface Bilayers for High-resolution Bioprinting
This study was led by Dr Alex Graham during his PhD at the University of Oxford. We printed cells within water-in-oil emulsions that formed droplet interface bilayers upon assembly, and demonstrated that this method could be used for high-resolution bioprinting (link: Scientific Reports 2017). This is linked to my research activity in 3D bioprinting.

Hybrid Bioinks for Templated 3D Bioprinting
This study was performed in collaboration with Dr Madeline Burke and Dr Ben Carter at the University of Bristol. We showed that the thermal gelation of pluronic could be used as a temporary guide for the printing of cellularized alginate hydrogels, which we used for cartilage and bone tissue engineering (link: Advanced Healthcare Materials 2016). This is linked to my research activity in 3D bioprinting.

Oxygenation of Cartilage Tissue
We developed cell-binding myoglobin conjugates that could oxygenate mesenchymal stem cells and reduce heterogeneous matrix formation during cartilage tissue engineering (link: Nature Communications 2015). This is linked to my research activity in biomolecular conjugation.

If you are interested in these topics, you can find more information in some of our recent reviews (Tissue Engineering Part A 2019, Trends in Biotechnology 2020, Advanced Functional Materials 2020, Trends in Biotechnology 2020)