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Faculty - Lauren Flynn
Tel: (613) 533-6000 x79177
Fax: (613) 533-6637
Office: Dupuis Hall 210
Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
Tissue engineering holds great promise for the treatment of numerous diseases, disorders, and traumas. The long-term objective in the field is to create tissue substitutes that will fully integrate into the body, promoting regeneration and restoring lost function. One common approach is to seed a supporting scaffold with cells that will contribute to the developing tissues. The specific properties of the scaffold will vary depending on the required application. If possible, the patient's own cells should be used to avoid problems with immune rejection. Initially, the construct should define and maintain a desired three-dimensional shape, but ideally, the scaffold would degrade as it is replaced by the patient's own healthy tissues.
Adipose-derived Stem Cells
Adipose-derived stem cells (ASC) are a population of multipotent mesenchymal stem cells and more-committed progenitors that are found within fat. Adipose tissue (fat) may be an ideal cell source for tissue engineering, as most patients are able to donate a small sample for cell isolation without any adverse effects. In the lab, ASC proliferate rapidly and can be stimulated to differentiate into mature fat, muscle, bone, and cartilage cells, as well as a putative neuronal population. Hence, the ASC may be suitable for a wide-range of tissue-engineering applications.
We are developing systems to culture the ASC, while maintaing their stem cell capacity, in order to obtain clinically-relevent cellular populations. We are also investigating the ASC within a variety of three-dimensional scaffold environments, to develop novel strategies for large-volume soft tissue regeneration. In particular, we are investigating the ASC population within naturally derived and synthetic scaffolds for adipose tissue engineering purposes. We are also working in collaboration with both Dr. Brian Amsden and Dr. Stephen Waldman on the development of new approaches in cartilage, bone, and cardiac tissue engineering.
This research is conducted at the Human Mobility Research Centre in the Kingston General Hospital.