Cell-Biomaterial Interactions

Cells are known to exhibit altered behavior in response to the stiffness of the material to which they are anchored, as well as to the nature of peptide ligands available for them to bind to. We are exploring the reasons behind this behavior and how it can be manipulated to alter macrophage response and stem cell differentiation and behaviour.

Influence of polymer chain flexibility on protein adsorption and subsequent cell response




Protein/ Peptide Delivery

We are currently developing novel polymer formulations for the sustained and local delivery of peptides, growth factors, and small molecules for applications ranging from bone regeneration to therapeutic angiogenesis to ocular delivery.

Delivery of a Bone and Cartilage Stimulating Peptide for bone growth generation


Collaborators:

Octane Group

Low melting point, amphiphilic microspheres for injectable therapeutic protein delivery


Phototriggerable polymers for ocular drug delivery




Soft Connective Tissue Regeneration

As part of the CONNECT! NSERC CREATE Program in Soft Connective Tissue Regeneration/Therapy we are currently developing adipose-derived stem cell based therapies to regenerate damaged articular cartilage, ligaments, the nucleus of the intervertebral disc, and adipose tissue.

Engineering adipogenesis for soft tissue regeneration


Collaborators:

Dr. Lauren Flynn (Western University)

Biomimetic scaffold for anterior cruciate ligament engineering


Nathan Holwell

Collaborators:

Dr. Davide Bardana (Orthopaedic Surgery, Queen’s University), Dr. Andrew Winterborn (Veterinarian, Queen’s University) and Dr. Lauren Flynn (Western University)



Synthesis of Biodegradable Polymers

Utilizing a variety of monomer synthesis approaches primarily based on the preparation of functionalized monomers capable of ring-opening polymerization, we are developing photoactivatable, biodegradable polymers for drug delivery, elastomers as scaffold materials for load-bearing soft tissues, and hydrogels for stem cell delivery capable of withstanding long-term mechanical loading.

Temperature-responsive elastomers


Fei Chen

Phototriggerable polymers for controlled drug delivery