CMI-FTE member, Rohan A. Shirwaiker, Assistant Professor, Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering and Associate Faculty, UNC/NCSU Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering has recently received the NSF CAREER award for his proposal: Ultrasound-Assisted Biofabrication Of Biomimetic Soft Tissue Constructs With Aligned Fiber Organization. This research was supported in the project’s initial stages by a CMI pilot study grant.
Shirwaiker and his team have studied extensively how orthopaedic soft tissues such as the knee meniscus and the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) are characterized by a well-organized fibrous network that is critical to their function. Current state-of-the-art 3D bioprinting technologies lack the ability to create engineered constructs that can mimic this unique fibrous organization. This CAREER award will allow Dr. Shirwaiker to engineer a new ultrasound-assisted bioprinting process to address this gap. Over the next 5 years, his group will study how hydrogel-encapsulated stem cells and nanofibers can be manipulated via ultrasound acoustic waves during bioprinting to achieve organized fibrous tissue. As a part of the grant, his team will also develop pedagogical and curricular strategies and knowledge resources to more effectively train K-12 through graduate students in the field of biofabrication.
The official NSF award notice can be found at the following link: