Mechanical Engineering 2018 Spring Seminar Series: Class 530.804

March 15, 2018 @ 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm
210 Hodson Hall

“Advanced 3D/4D Bioprinting and Nanomaterials for Complex Tissue Regeneration”

Presented by Professor Lijie Grace Zhang, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, the George Washington University

As an emerging tissue manufacturing technique, 3D bioprinting offers great precision and control of the internal architecture and outer shape of a scaffold, allowing for close recapitulation of complicated structures found in biological tissue. In addition, 4D bioprinting is a highly innovative additive manufacturing process to fabricate pre-designed, self-assembly structures with the ability to transform from one state to another directly off the bioprinter. The term “4D” refers to the time-dependent dynamic process triggered by specific stimulation according to predesigned requirements. However, current 3D/4D bioprinting based additive manufacturing technologies are hindered by the lack of advanced smart “inks”. Therefore, the main objective of our research is to develop novel biologically inspired nano or smart inks and advanced 3D/4D bioprinting techniques to fabricate the next generation of complex tissue constructs (such as vascularized tissue, neural tissue and osteochondral tissue). For this purpose, we designed and synthesized innovative biologically inspired nanomaterials (i.e., self-assembly materials, and conductive carbon nanomaterials) and smart natural materials. Through 3D/4D bioprinting in our lab, a series of biomimetic tissue scaffolds were successfully fabricated. Our results show that these bioprinted nano or smart scaffolds have not only improved mechanical properties but also excellent cytocompatibility properties for enhancing various cell growth and differentiation, thus promising for complex tissue/organ regeneration.

Dr. Lijie Grace Zhang is an associate professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the George Washington University. She obtained her Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering at Brown University. Dr. Zhang joined GW after finishing her postdoctoral training at Rice University and Harvard Medical School. She is the director of the Bioengineering Laboratory for Nanomedicine and Tissue Engineering at GW. She has received the ASME Sia Nemat-Nasser Early Career Award, NIH Director’s New Innovator Award, Young Innovator in Cellular and Molecular Bioengineering, John Haddad Young Investigator Award by American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, and Early Career Award from the International Journal of Nanomedicine, etc. Her research interests include 3D/4D bioprinting, nanobiomaterials, complex tissue engineering and breast cancer bone metastasis. Dr. Zhang has authored 3 books, over 109 journal papers, book chapters and conference proceedings, 6 patents and has presented her work on over 280 conferences, university and institutes. She also serves as the Editor of Materials Science and Engineering C: Materials for Biological Applications; Associate Editor-in-Chief of International Journal of Nanomedicine; and Associate Editor of ASME Journal of Engineering and Science in Medical Diagnostics and Therapy.

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