Current Projects    :    Completed Projects

Completed Projects

Ocular Diagnostics

Funded by the National Science Foundation (PI: Shashi Murthy)

The objective of this project is to design a range of microfluidic devices to diagnose two disorders of the eye, uveitis and intraocular lymphoma. State of the art diagnosis of these diseases typically involves a vitreous biopsy followed by analysis of the extracted vitreous humor by pathology and flow cytometry at off-site laboratories and the diagnostic yield of these techniques are low. Our work in this area aims to create a family of inexpensive microfluidic devices that can accurately diagnose these diseases at points of clinical care.

Research Research
Array of microfluidic devices designed for isolation of cardiomyocytes Size based separation of myocytes

Microfluidic Cell Separation for Tissue Engineering & Regenerative Medicine

Funded by the National Institute of Bioengineering and Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering
(PI: Shashi Murthy)

This project is a large-scale multi-institutional collaboration that brings together experts in four areas of tissue engineering with the overall aim of designing microfluidic systems to enrich and isolate functional and stem/progenitor cells from blood or tissue.  With Prof. Milica Radisic at the University of Toronto, a cardiac tissue engineer, we are designing devices for fast and efficient enrichment of cardiomyocytes from digested cardiac tissue relative to the current technique of pre-plating.  We are also examining ways to isolate rare cardiac progenitor cells.  With Drs. Juan Melero-Martin and John Mayer, we are designing devices that can extract endothelial progenitor cells from blood.  These cells will be investigated for their potential to repair existing blood vessels as well as form engineered vascular tissue.  With Drs. Yaakov Nahmias and Martin Yarmush at the Massachusetts General Hospital and the Shriners Burns Hospital, we are investigating how microfluidic systems can be designed for rapid, point-of-care isolation of skin stem cells from normal skin tissue to restore key structures in damaged or burned skin.  With Prof. Rebecca Carrier, we are designing microfluidic devices for the separation of the cells that make up intestinal tissue, including stem cells.

Cell Surface Receptor Expression in Microfluidic Separation

Funded by the National Science Foundation (PI: Shashi Murthy)

This CAREER research project aims to understand molecular-level phenomena at the surfaces of cells during separation processes in microfluidic devices. These phenomena are particularly relevant for separation processes that rely on affinity, i.e. interactions between cell surface receptors and immobilized ligands. The design of these processes is generally based on the assumption that the affinity level of each cells is constant but this may not always be true. This project aims to understand these changes within the framework of an integrated research and education program.

Microfabricated Cell Culture Substrates for Gastro-intestinal Tissue Engineering

Funded by the National Science Foundation (PI: Rebecca Carrier, NU)

This project is a collaborative effort with Prof. Rebecca Carrier at Northeastern University and focuses on the development of microfabricated substrates for the reconstitution of an intestinal epithelium using tissue engineering technology. It involves the use of microfabrication to create scaffolds that mimic the unique spatial topography of intestinal tissue. The aim of this project is to create a platform to expedite drug development to investigate drug transport in vitro.

Biostable Coatings for Neuroprosthetic Devices

Funded by the National Insitute of Neurological Disoders and Stroke (PI: Hilton Pryce Lewis, GVD Corp.)

This project aims to develop insulating and bioactive coatings for neural prosthetic devices. Neural prostheses are silicon-based electrodes that are designed to stimulate and record from neurons in the central nervous system and are currently under development as potential therapies for disorders such as stroke and paralysis. Two major challenges in the fabrication of these devices are the protection of the electronic circuits under implantation conditions and ensuring good connectivity between neurons and the electrode pads on the device. Our work in this area is in collaboration with GVD Corporation and addresses the development of new neuroprosthetic coating materials.

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