Inaugural Research Awards

2015 Regenerative Medicine Minnesota Inaugural Research Awards

The following six research projects were selected for Regenerative Medicine Minnesota grants from 90 applications. These grants are effective for a two-year interval from 2015 - 2017.
Phlpp Inhibitors for Articular Cartilage Repair and Regeneration Dr. Bradley’s research is striving to find ways for the human body to self-repair and regenerate human cartilage damaged by osteoarthritis. Her team of researchers is testing ways to remove barriers to the body’s ability to self-repair. 
Toward Autologus Retinal Cell Replacement Therapy for Age-related Macular Degeneration Dr. Ferrington’s work aims to make the testing of treatments for age-related macular degeneration faster, both to prevent disease progression and to repair damage, using cells derived from the eye. These cells will also be tested for use in vision-restoring transplants. 
Enhancing Bone Marrow Regeneration Dr. Lund’s laboratory developed a zebrafish model to rapidly test how well new and existing drugs improve bone marrow regeneration after transplant. His research, which does not require that the zebrafish be sacrificed, is using this model to test many drugs and quickly identify possible agents for use in human patients.
Bridge to Liver Regeneration Dr. Nyberg’s unique training as a liver transplant surgeon and a biomedical engineer resulted in this research program. The overall goal of the program is to develop cell-based therapies for the treatment of patients with liver failure and metabolic liver disease
Endothelialization of Engineered Coronary Artery Bypass Grafts Using Bone Marrow and Adipose-derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Dr. Tranquillo is working with bioengineered blood vessels that can be used in heart bypass surgery. His laboratory team is investigating the use of stem cells to protect these vessels against blood clots and blockage.
Engineered human pluripotent stem cells to generate enhanced natural killer cells for cancer therapy Dr. Walcheck is focused on using an element of the immune system (Natural Killer cells) that naturally fights cancer. Based on the idea that having more of these cells could help a patient, he is developing ways to grow large numbers of a patient’s Natural Killer cells without losing their ability to combat the disease.