The world is not flat: organic electronic devices for hosting and monitoring cells in 3D
|Starts:||12:00 9 Jan 2018|
|Ends:||13:00 9 Jan 2018|
|What is it:||Seminar|
|Organiser:||School of Materials|
|Speaker:||Dr Róisín M. Owens|
Please note, this seminar has moved from 17 January to 9 January 2018.
My research program focuses on harnessing the power of engineering for developing in vitro biological models in a synthetic biology approach. By developing both the biological model and the adapted monitoring methods in parallel,
both may be iteratively improved resulting in enhanced systems. I define the latter combination as in vitro systems: an integrated system to monitor human biology in vitro. Specifically, I have focused on the use of polymeric
electroactive materials and devices which bridge a gap between hard inflexible materials used for physical transducers and soft, compliant biological tissues. The transducer thus becomes a ‘synthetic’ part of the model, allowing
transduction and/ or stimulation of biological systems in the least invasive and thus most biomimetic fashion possible.
In this presentation I will discuss our recent progress in adding to the repertoire of tissue engineers; alongside the well-known biochemical and mechanical cues used to recreate biologically relevant tissues, we attempt to
integrate electrical cues. Electrical cues have a demonstrated role in development, not just for electrogenic tissues, but for all tissues. To enable the trifecta of stimuli necessary for recreating tissues in vitro, we have generated
conducting polymer scaffolds blended with biopolymers such as collagen. I will show evidence that these structures can simultaneously host and monitor tissues.
Dr. Róisín M. Owens received her BA in Natural Sciences (Mod. Biochemistry) at Trinity College Dublin, and her PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Southampton University. She carried out two postdoctoral fellowships
at Cornell University, on host-pathogen interactions of Mycobacterium tuberculosis in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology with Prof. David Russell, and on rhinovirus therapeutics in the Department of Biomedical
Engineering with Prof. Moonsoo Jin. From 2009 to2017 she was a group leader in the department of bioelectronics at Ecole des Mines de St. Etienne, on the microelectronics campus in Provence. Her current research centres
on application of organic electronic materials for monitoring biological systems in vitro, with a specific interest in studying the gut-brain-microbiome axis. She has received several awards including the European Research Council
starting (2011), proof of concept grant (2014) and consolidator (2016) grants, a Marie Curie fellowship, and an EMBO fellowship. In 2014, she became principal editor for biomaterials for MRS communications (Cambridge
University Press), and she serves on the advisory board of Advanced BioSystems and Journal of Applied Polymer Science (Wiley). She is author of 50+ publications.
Dr Róisín M. Owens
Role: University Lecturer
Organisation: University of Cambridge, Department of Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology
Travel and Contact Information
Manchester Interdisciplinary Biocentre - John Garside Building