2022 Undergraduate Summer Research Program Participant

Home Department: Art Practice
Mentor: Yunzhi Peter Yang (Orthopaedic Surgery)

“Testing Human Mesenchymal Cell Viability using Encapsulation within Hydrogels”

As a whole, the Yang lab is working on creating synthetic tissue scaffolds that can be inserted into areas of necrotic tissue to promote cell production and tissue regeneration. In order to test cell viability under such conditions, Charu has been conducting a series of experiments that examine different parameters. She has encapsulated human stem cells into synthetic tissue, which she made from gelatin and other materials. She has tested parameters such as varying concentrations of the gelatin, exposure time under light, and cell density, later testing viability. She will also be working with other tissue types and compounds (PCL/TCP/Gelatin) to test solubility and conductivity to promote proliferation of bone cells known as osteoblasts. These experiments will help determine how to improve the efficacy of synthetic tissue scaffolding for tissue regeneration.