Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Nanoscale Science and Engineering


Nanoscale Engineering

Content Description

1 online resource (viii, 199 pages) : color illustrations

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Janet L Paluh

Committee Members

Jose Cibelli, Scott Tenenbaum, Xinxin Ding, Yubing Xie


Bioinformatics, Cardiogenesis, Differentiation, Ethnically Diverse iPSCs, High throughput Engineered Platforms, Neurogenesis, Stem cells, Embryonic stem cells, Multipotent stem cells, Nanobiotechnology

Subject Categories

Biomedical Engineering and Bioengineering | Engineering | Nanoscience and Nanotechnology


Human stem cell research holds an unprecedented promise to revolutionize the way we approach medicine and healthcare in general, moving us from a position of mostly addressing the symptoms to a state where treatments can focus on removing the underlying causes of a condition. Stem cell research can shed light into normal developmental pathways, as we are beginning to replicate them in a petri dish and can also be used to model diseases and abnormal conditions. Direct applications can range from finding cures for single or multigene diseases to demonstrating that we can replace these genes with a normal copy. We can even begin to model lifelong conditions such as aging by iPSC technology by relying on fetal, young, adult, and centenarian populations to provide insights into the process. We have also begun to understand the microenvironment in which specific cell populations reside. Being able to replicate the chemical, physical mechanical, and spatial needs of those cells, research groups are successfully generating full organs using cadaver scaffolds of heart and kidney, and there is promising research to reach the same success with other organs, such as the liver, and pancreas. Advances in those areas open an enormous potential to study organs, organoids, organ valves, tubes or other functional elements such as beating cardiomyocytes in vitro.