Re-engineering the Human Heart

Business Nov 21, 2011

Cardiomyocyte cells contracting after 18 days of incubation

Credit: Samuel Chang

Lipke grows new cardiac tissue in the lab

More than one out of every four deaths in the United States is caused by heart disease, making it the leading cause of death for men and women every year.

Cardiac regeneration engineer Elizabeth Lipke sees a solution. Her lab is developing materials and techniques to grow contracting heart cells and assemble them into engineered heart tissue. Her research will improve our ability to repair the damaged or diseased heart. In addition, she’s investigating materials that enhance repair of blood vessels after the placement of stents and grafts and promote the long-term success of these devices.

These images are of cardiomyocyte cells as they begin their incubation. Credit Samuel Chang

Lipke’s work holds promise for other areas of research as well. Using engineered heart tissue as an experimental platform allows researchers to test drugs and therapies without impacting patients.

Principal Investigator

Elizabeth Lipke, Ph.D

Research Focus: Cell-material interactions, biomimetic material design, cardiac regeneration, cardiovascular tissue engineering, directed stem cell differentiation, cardiac electrophysiology.

Visit Elizabeth Lipke’s website.

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