Connecticut Regenerative Medicine Research Established Investigator Award

BME Core faculty Dr. Sangamesh Kumbar has received the Connecticut Regenerative Medicine Research Established Investigator Award for his research.


His research focuses on treatment of rotator cuff injuries.  Rotator cuff tears are a common and debilitating injury in the US and around the world.  Current surgical techniques often fall short of optimal healing and recovery.  Our research focuses on the development of a bioactive fiber based tendon augmentation device to mimic the natural tendon healing process.  The potential application of this technology promises to drastically improve tendon tear treatments and outcomes.

Dr. Syam Nukavarapu and Dr. Cato Laurencin Publish Book on Musculoskeletal Tissue Engineering

BME core faculty members Dr. Syam Nukavarapu and Cato Laurencin have recently published a book titled Regenerative Engineering of Musculoskeletal Tissues and Interfaces. 



Repair and regeneration of musculoskeletal tissues is generating substantial interest within the biomedical community. Consequently, these are the most researched tissues from the regeneration point of view. Regenerative Engineering of Musculoskeletal Tissues and Interfaces presents information on the fundamentals, progress and recent developments related to the repair and regeneration of musculoskeletal tissues and interfaces. This comprehensive review looks at individual tissues as well as tissue interfaces. Early chapters cover various fundamentals of biomaterials and scaffolds, types of cells, growth factors, and mechanical forces, moving on to discuss tissue-engineering strategies for bone, tendon, ligament, cartilage, meniscus, and muscle, as well as progress and advances in tissue vascularization and nerve innervation of the individual tissues. Final chapters present information on musculoskeletal tissue interfaces.

About the Authors:

Dr. Nukavarapu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Connecticut Health Center (UConn Health), Connecticut. He has joint appointments with the departments of Biomedical Engineering (BME) and Materials Science & Engineering (MSE) at The University of Connecticut. His research interests include Biomaterials, Stem Cells, and Tissue Engineering. Dr. Nukavarapu’s laboratory has been focused on developing advanced matrix systems for Bone and Osteochondral Tissue Engineering. His group is at the forefront of developing Completely Intra-operative Tissue Engineering Strategies (CITES) for on-site therapy or bedside tissue engineering. Dr. Nukavarapu has published about 50 articles in peer-reviewed journals and has 10 book chapters and holds 2 patents. He is serving as editorial board member for many field journals. Dr. Nukavarapu teaches Advanced Biomaterials (BME 4701) course at the University of Connecticut.

Joseph W. Freeman is Associate Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Rutgers University his research interests
include new biomaterial-based strategies for the regeneration of musculoskeletal tissues.

Dr. Laurencin is the Van Dusen Distinguished Endowed Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, and Professor of Chemical, Materials, and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Connecticut. In addition, Dr. Laurencin is a University Professor at the University of Connecticut (the 7th in the institution’s history). He is the Director of both the Institute for Regenerative Engineering, and the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Center at the University of Connecticut Health Center. Dr. Laurencin serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the Connecticut Institute for Clinical and Translational Science at UCONN.

Dr. Laurencin earned his undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering from Princeton, his medical degree, Magna Cum Laude, from Harvard Medical School, and his Ph.D. in Biochemical Engineering/Biotechnology from M.I.T.

A board certified orthopaedic surgeon and shoulder/ knee specialist, he won the Nicolas Andry Award from the Association of Bone and Joint Surgeons. His discoveries in research have been highlighted by Scientific American Magazine, and more recently by National Geographic Magazine in its “100 Scientific Discoveries that Changed the World” edition.

Dr. Laurencin is an outstanding mentor and he has received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring in ceremonies at the White House. Dr. Laurencin has received the Elizabeth Hurlock Beckman Award for mentoring, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s Mentor Award.

Dr. Laurencin previously served as the UConn Health Center’s Vice President for Health Affairs and Dean of the School of Medicine. Prior to that, Dr. Laurencin was the Lillian T. Pratt Distinguished Professor and Chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Virginia, and Orthopaedic Surgeon-in-Chief for the University of Virginia Health System.

Dr. Laurencin is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, and an elected member of the National Academy of Engineering. He is also an elected member of the National Academy of Inventors.

Dr. Guoan Zheng Receives NSF Research Grant

Dr. Guoan Zheng Receives NSF Research Grant

Dr. Guoan Zheng

Dr. Guoan Zheng, a BME core faculty member, has received a $310k research grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) in support of his development of a new microscopy imaging technique. This 3-year project is entitled “Coded-illumination Fourier Ptychography for High-content Multimodal Imaging”.

Despite the rapid progress in biomedical optics in the past decade, there is still a pressing need for higher information content in images. Dr. Zheng’s NSF project aims to develop a new type of high-content microscopy technique that incorporates the innovations of Fourier data recovery, structured illumination for tissue sectioning, multi-layer modeling, and spectrum multiplexing. Iteration across data acquisitions is used to produce images with exceptionally high information content and increase image dimensionality, either spectral or spatial. The successful implementation of this project could benefit many biomedical applications, including deep tissue imaging, confocal reflectance microscopy, in vivo skin imaging, and multi-color fluorescence microscopy.