Speaker: Tatiana Segura, PhD, Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Professor in Neurology, Affiliate of the Regeneration Next Initiative
Description:The Segura laboratory focuses on the design of materials to promote endogenous tissue repair. In this approach, stem cells are not delivered to the injured or deceased tissue, rather a material is delivered, which induces endogenous stem cells to repair the lost tissue. In other words, their approach uses materials as drugs. Since no stem cells are delivered, the material must converse with the damaged tissue and encourage local stem cells to regenerate the injured or lost tissue rather than scar. The materials are often made from naturally occurring polymers and are processed to mimic the repairing environment. The Segura laboratory has found that injectable porous materials that can take the shape of the wound are in general better able to repair tissue than non-porous injectable materials. Thus, understanding the influence of microporosity (%void space and interconnectivity), the type of porosity (periodic structure vs. random structure), the curvature of the individual pores (convex versus concave), the biochemical composition of the pores (bioactive or inert), and the feature size (larger than a cell or smaller than a cell) on tissue regeneration is of key importance. These features are studied in silico with mathematical models of local void geometry, in vitro with model cells to understand the cell material interaction and how materials can drive the interaction, and in vivo with animal models disease states, understanding how materials can influence endogenous regenerative processes.
Location: RB101, CVM, NC State University