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3D (Bio)printed functionalized scaffolds for minimally invasive tissue regeneration

To address some of the current challenges with minimally invasive treatment of degenrative musculoskeletal diseases, our lab develops 3D (bio)printed injectable functionalized scaffolds. In this project, we explore diverse biomaterials, fabrication methods, and bio-functionalization approaches for targetted minimally invasive tissue regeneration. 

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Unraveling mechanisms underlying age-related bone loss

Aging is a significant risk factor for chronic diseases, including bone loss. This project explores the impact of age-related accumulation of senescent cells on healthy osteocyte mechanobiology. Using visible light-induced 3D bioprinted bone-mimicking scaffolds, we investigate the effects of senescence-associated markers on osteocyte mechano-responsiveness, locally and systematically. The outcomes of such mechanistic study facilitate the development of new strategies to mitigate and/or treat age-related bone loss.

Biomechanics of IVD degeneration and its minimally invasive endogeneous regeneration

This project addresses the economic burden of low back pain, with a focus on intervertebral disc (IVD) degeneration. The degeneration of the nucleus pulposus is a critical factor in IVD pathologies, affecting both biomechanical and biochemical properties. Through mapping mechanical profiles to biomolecular compositions, we aim to unravel complex degenerative mechanisms in IVD. These insights inform innovative strategies for addressing degenerative disc diseases. The outcomes of this mechanistic study guide the development of novel cell-free endogenous minimally invasive treatment strategies for degenerated IVD.

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