Professor Satish Kumar Selected for the Collaborative Seed Grants in ImmunoEngineering

MSE Professor Satish Kumar and Emory Professor of Medicine Young-sup Yoon's proposal "Human mesenchymal stem cell-driven immunomodulation for enhanced engraftment of human pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (hPSC-CMs),” was selected from a very competitive group of proposals for the Collaborative Seed Grants in ImmunoEngineering.

The Collaborative Seed Grants in ImmunoEngineering is intended to stimulate new, collaborative research in ImmunoEngineering and to encourage scientists and engineers from diverse fields to come together, ask important questions and solve important and transformative problems related to the immune system. 

The goal of Professor Kumar and Professor Yoon’s work is to enhance the survival and function of hPSC-CMs using hybrid biomaterials by modulating the inflammatory response and increasing cell protection. The hybrid biomaterial co-encapsulation system is expected to promote the viability and functionality of hPSC-CMs by modulating inflammatory reactions. They first plan to fabricate and optimize the hybrid material based on the parameters of cell viability and hPSC-CM functionality followed by use of an in vitro inflammation system consisting of U937 monocytes in suspension will to evaluate the immunomodulatory and cytoprotective role of hMSCs in the hybrid biomaterial. They will also evaluate the efficacy of the hybrid biomaterial co-encapsulation system in a rat MI model considering cell survival, cell engraftment, inflammation, and cardiac performance. The outcomes from these studies are expected to provide insight into the use of hybrid biomaterials and the feasibility of using hMSCs in immunomodulatory cardiac cell therapy.