Biology Inspired Engineering: From Mechanotherapeutics to Human Organs-on-Chips

Dr. Donald E. Ingber
Wednesday, April 4, 2018
4:00 - 5:00 pm
SEH, Lehman Auditorium


In this presenta on, Dr. Ingber will describe work he has been carrying out at the Wyss Ins tute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard that he heads, which leverages biological design principles to develop new engineering innova ons. He will highlight recent advances that his team has made in the engineering of “Organs- on-Chips”— micro uidic devices lined by living human cells created with computer microchip manufacturing techniques that recapitulate organ-level structure and func ons as a way to replace animal tes ng for drug development, mechanis c discovery, and personalized medicine. He will review recent advances him and his team have made in the engineering of mul ple organ chips, including lung, gut, kidney, bone marrow, and blood-brain barrier chips, and in their use to develop human disease models and discover new therapeu cs. Dr. Ingber will also describe his e orts to integrate these organ chips into a ‘human body-on-chips’ and to engineer an automated instrument for real- me analysis of cellular responses to pharmaceu cals, chemicals, and toxins. He will also summarize other examples of bioinspired nanotechnologies in development at the Ins tute, including mechanically ac vated clot-bus ng nanotherapeu cs that target to vascular occlusion sites like ar  cial platelets, a dialysis-like therapeu c device for cleansing blood of pathogens and toxins in pa ents with sepsis, and a biologically inspired surface coa ng for medical devices that reduces the need for soluble an coagulants.

Photo of Dr. Donald

Donald E. Ingber, M.D., Ph.D., is the Founding Director of the Wyss Ins tute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University, Judah Folkman Professor of Vascular Biology at Harvard Medical School and the Vascular Biology Program at Boston Children's Hospital, and Professor of Bioengineering at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He received his B.A., M.A., M.Phil., M.D. and Ph.D. from Yale University. Dr. Ingber is a pioneer in the  eld of biologically inspired engineering, and at the Wyss Ins tute, he currently leads a mul faceted e ort to develop breakthrough bioinspired technologies to advance healthcare and to improve sustainability. His work has led to major advances in mechanobiology, tumor angiogenesis,  ssue engineering, systems biology, nanobiotechnology and transla onal medicine. Through his work, Ingber also has helped to break down boundaries between science, art and design. Dr. Ingber has authored more than 450 publica ons and 170 patents, founded 5 companies, and been a guest speaker at more than 500 events interna onally. He is a member of the Na onal Academy of Medicine, Na onal Academy of Inventors, American Ins tute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was named one of the Top 20 Transla onal Researchers world-wide in 2012 (Nature Biotechnology), a Leading Global Thinker of 2015 (Foreign Policy magazine), and has received numerous other honors in a broad range of disciplines, including the Robert A. Pritzker Award and the Shu Chien Award (Biomedical Engineering Society), the Rous Whipple Award (American Society for Inves ga ve Pathology), the Life me Achievement Award (Society of In Vitro Biology), the Leading Edge Award (Society of Toxicology), Founders Award (Biophysical Society) and the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Innovator Award. One example of Ingber’s most recently developed technologies are Human Organs-on-Chips. These are micro uidic cell culture devices created with microchip manufacturing methods and lined by living human cells, which are being used to replace animal tes ng as a more accurate and a ordable in vitro pla orm for drug development and personalized medicine. In 2015, Ingber’s Organs-on-Chips technology was named Design of the Year by the London Design Museum and was also acquired by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City for its permanent design collec on. His Organs-on-Chips were also named one of the Top 10 Emerging Technologies of 2016 by the World Economic Forum.