Biomedical Materials and Engineering

Degree: PhD
University: Queen Mary, University of London , Faculty: Engineering
City: London , Country: United Kingdom
Discipline: Engeneering & Technology
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  • Start Date of Studies Unknown
  • Language English
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  • Programme Description

    Programme Description

    The complementary disciplines of materials science and engineering can provide understanding of complex, hierarchical systems in biology. The specific strategy of the group is to produce solutions to clinically relevant problems, through the study of normal and disordered tissue structure/function. An integrated multiscale approach is taken with respect to both structural organization and reactivity of tissues studied from the nano- to the macro-scale. Examples include the modification of the stem cell niche, using both biomaterial and engineering cues, to explore their potential to differentiate into specific cell lineages for use in regenerative medicine. Specific areas of interest are the musculoskeletal, vascular and neuronal systems, aimed at a greater holistic understanding of the mechano-biological and electrophysiological tissue behaviour. Underpinning this strategy is an effort to advance experimental techniques, both within the School, across Queen Mary and through use of UK central facilities. As an example live cell imaging is employed in conjunction with confocal imaging to establish quantifiable parameters to explain mechanotransduction signalling pathways. Extending out from direct tissue analysis is the study of micro- and macro-scale fluid flows, which influence both the tissue environment and cellular functions, as well as contributing to the long term structural outcomes of medical significance, viz prognosis in vascular aneurisms. The Group is also involved in advancing new diagnostic tools and techniques, which range from spectroscopic analysis of cancer tissue in vitro, in vivo sensors to microcapsules for the delivery of biological agents. The experimental approach is supported by a considerable utilisation of in silico modelling designed to predict early damage or disease, thereby developing the potential for regenerative medicine strategies. Ultimately, a progression to direct medical application is anticipated. Future biomaterial developments include smart bioactive nanocomposite coatings for enhanced hip prostheses, novel bioceramics for hard tissue repair and bone tissue engineering, which can be evaluated with both laboratory-based tests and animal models. Such new generation materials can be developed by Queen Mary-associated companies such as Progentix Orthobiology and Apatech, the latter having recently been acquired by Baxter International.


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