Biotech Metropolitan Women

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Headshot of Helen H. Lu, Ph.D.

Inventor | Helen H. Lu, Ph.D.

Dr. Helen Lu is currently the Vice Chair and Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Columbia University. She obtained her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Bioengineering from University of Pennsylvania. Her research focuses on Orthopedic Tissue Interface Engineering to achieve successful soft-tissue repairs in the long-term. Dr. Lu is affiliated with the Orthopaedic Research Society, Society for Biomaterials, Tissue Engineering International and Regenerative Medicine Society, Biomedical Engineering Society, and American Association for the Advancement of Science. She currently is an associated editor for IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering and has also served on the editorial board of several journals, Tissue Engineering, Journal of Biomedical Material Research A, and Journal of Orthopedic Research.

Biopolymer Graft Collar for Enhanced Tendon Fixation

The biopolymer graft collar enhances and promotes the healing of tendon and ligament grafts and increases the strength of tendon-bone fixation. The structure consists of two regions. The first region contains a hydrogel and the second region attaches to the first region containing a collagen or polymer-fiber mesh. Common orthopedic surgeries often see complications and difficulty in healing. This device is able to promote healing through releasing substances placed in the graft. Some of these substances are anti-infectives, anti-biotics, bisphosphonate, hormones, analgesics, anti-inflammatory agents, growth factors, angiogenic factors, chemotherapeutic agents, anti-rejection agents, stem cells and peptides.

Joint injury repair via biomimetic tissue-tissue interact engineering

This invention is an implantable bio-scaffold to repair rotator-cuff injuries that are normally difficult to repair. This biomimetic and biodegradable technology guides cell attachment and matrix development to promote tissue repair. By mimicking collagen fibrils, it regulates fibroblast response, integrin expression and matrix deposition in the human rotator cuff muscles.

Novel materials and strategies for orthopedic tissue engineering

The set of novel materials and strategies for orthopedic engineering is used for treatment and repair of musculoskeletal tissues. Common injuries where this technology is focused on are osteoarthritis, ACL and rotator cuff injuries. These materials and methods are biodegradable, biomimetic and compatible with various cell types and growth factors providing high tunability.

Biomimetic biomaterial scaffolds promote and direct stem cell differentiation for regeneration of multiple skeletal tissue types

This technology uses biomimetic scaffolds to study cellular responses and mechanical and chemical stimulation of target tissues. It identifies the optimal biomaterial designs for osteogenic, chondrogenic, and fibroblastic induction of human stem cells. Directing stem cell differentiation will regenerate target tissues by creating interfaces, soft tissue grafts and enhancing fixation around the bone.