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Scientists gather in Southampton to discuss how to grow missing organs and tissues

Published: 
16 July 2015

Leading scientists from the UK and around the world will meet at the University of Southampton next week (20 and 21 July) to discuss new technologies to create new, living tissues in the lab and to help our bodies regenerate themselves.

The meeting is sponsored by the Tissue and Cell Engineering Society (TCES) and organised by the University’s Bone and Joint Research Group.

The TCES 2015 meeting will bring together the latest UK research with world-leading national and international speakers on stem cells, tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Speakers include Dieter Hutmacher, from the University of Queensland in Australia, who will present his latest efforts to make bones heal faster and better and Sheila MacNeil, from the University of Sheffield, who will talk about her work that aims to create replacement skin.

In addition to these leading experts, the next generation of tissue engineers, biologists and early career student scientists from the University of Southampton will be presenting their work on topics including ‘Stem cells’, ‘New technologies’ and ‘Translation to therapies’.

PhD student Umesh Jonnalagadda will explain his work on a device that levitates cells in order to make new cartilage tissues, making it easier to create larger pieces of tissue in the lab, ultimately aimed at replacing cartilage in patients’ knees. Another student, Agnieszka Janeczek, will be presenting some exciting recent experiments where she has been able to package drugs into tiny ‘nanoparticles’ – just 1/1000 the diameter of a human hair – to show that they can trigger cells to regenerate new bone tissue. The aim of which is to be able to deliver drugs to exactly the right location, without the risk of side effects.

Bone tissue

Professor Richard Oreffo, Head of the Bone and Joint Research Group and co-organiser of the meeting said: “The meeting will showcase the best in UK regenerative medicine and provide an unparalleled opportunity for the exchange of new ideas and developments in stem cells and tissue engineering. This is critical if we are to address the healthcare challenges we currently face in an increasing aging population.”

Ines Moreno, PhD student at the University of Southampton and presenter at the conference, said: “As a young scientist this is a great opportunity to speak about my research project and get the necessary feedback to make it better and push it forward. Unlike other conferences, TCES conference assembles the most relevant experts in my field of research, which presents a fantastic opportunity to speak about my science, get noticed and establish the key networks early in my career.”

TCES is an independent society, which has the aim of furthering knowledge, research and dissemination of information on cell and tissue engineering. The Bone and Joint Research Group, headed by Professor Richard Oreffo, is focussed on understanding bone development and developing strategies to regenerate bone and cartilage using stem cell technology and innovative scaffolds for orthopaedic application.

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