Repairing injured and diseased tissues is a complex, methodical process. While the body is proficient at tissue repair, sometimes the severity of certain diseases and injuries is beyond the body’s healing capabilities. INBT researchers are innovating approaches to repair and regenerate tissues damaged by injury and disease with the use of stem cells, materials, and/or devices.

Everyone has their own personal supply of stem cells already circulating in their body. The cells have the potential to divide and grow into any sort of tissue in the body. INBT researchers have harnessed the power of stem cells to repair and regenerate different tissues that have been damaged due to injury or disease. Engineers are also improving methods of growing specialized stem cells.

INBT researchers from different departments are working together to grow better stem cells that can be coaxed to grow into specialized tissues. For example, biomedical engineers are developing ways to encourage stem cells to grow into replacement nerves, soft tissues, muscle, blood vessels, and bone. Their work can help treat patients with wounds caused by diabetes, burns, or heart disease.

The treatments can be tailored to the patient’s anatomy and biology. Unlocking the unlimited potential of stem cells may sound like science fiction, but INBT researchers are making these technologies a reality.

Funding Opportunity

The Human Aging Project (HAP) at Johns Hopkins aims to bring together basic biologists, engineers and translational investigators to develop and implement novel diagnostics, treatments or preventive strategies that help maintain good health, function and cognition for all older adults.

A new HAP scholar position is now being offered to focus on the development of research in basic aging biology through a competitive review process. Go to the HAP Scholars website for more details. The application closes December 15.

Machine learning unveils the role of cell density (in blue) and tension (in red) on human induced pluripotent stem cells (HiPSC) self-organization in micropatterned shapes. Photo credit: Quinton Smith and Sharon Gerecht.