Wednesday, November 17, 2010

UC San Diego Bioengineering Professor Shyni Varghese: "We need to know what is happening in nature before we can successfully mimic it"

UC San Diego Professor Shyni Varghese’s bioengineering research projects span the continuum from basic research to translational work aimed at bridging the bench-to-bed divide. The lab, however, is united by one overarching goal: to treat dysfunctional tissues or organs using stem cells and healthy tissues derived from stem cells.

“I strongly believe that if we don’t fundamentally understand the science, then the translational work cannot happen. We need to know what is happening in nature before we can successfully mimic it,” said Varghese.

Read about a recent project from the Varghese lab that was led by undergraduate bioengineering students from the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering.

Undergrad Bioengineers Advance Stem Cell Science at UC San Diego

Han Lim (right)and bioengineering professor Shyni Varghese (left) in 2008.  Lim is one of the bioengineering undergraduates who created an artificial environment for stem cells that simultaneously provides the chemical, mechanical and electrical cues necessary for stem cell growth and differentiation.  

Check out the stem cell research performed by undergraduate bioengineers at UC San Diego.

The translucent materials bridging the dishes in the photo are “agarose salt bridges” -- part of the electrochemical cell used to subject hydrogels to an electric field. Learn more.