Dr. Boyang Zhang is an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering at McMaster University. His lab uses advanced biofabrication techniques to build human micro-tissue models for predictive drug discovery and to construct functional macro-tissues for tissue regeneration in patients. He talks about building microfluidic devices for biological applications and using machine learning to study organoid morphology. He also talks about his team’s high-throughput system for vascularizing tissue spheroids and his experience starting a company to commercialize this technology.
Dr. Jun Wu is an Assistant Professor at the University of Texas Southwestern. The Wu lab uses interspecies chimeras to study fundamental biology: conserved and divergent developmental programs, determination of body and organ size, species barriers, and cancer resistance. They are also working to develop new applications for regenerative medicine. He talks about developmental compatibility between species, and the similarities and differences between blastoid models and blastocysts. He also discusses the challenges of growing human cells in animals, and human-monkey chimeric embryos.
Dr. Michael Levin is the Director of the Allen Discovery Center and a Distinguished Professor of Biology at Tufts University. He is a cognitive biologist who utilizes model systems such as Xenopus to answer fundamental questions in developmental biology. He talks about regenerating frog legs, using bioelectricity to direct development, and the potential applications of xenobots.
Dr. Krishanu Saha is an Associate Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His lab utilizes quantitative and bioengineering methods including genome editing, biomanufacturing, and disease modeling to advance the next generation of cell and gene therapies.