We aim to develop human bone extracts mixed with commercially available bone putty and prepare customized 3D print materials, both of which are infused with anti-cancer drugs. These bone substitutes could be used to fill and stabilize the large empty spaces and to locally deliver anti-cancer drugs that kills any remaining tumor cells and promote bone healing following tumor resection in patients with bone metastasis. We also aim to establish a 3D bone metastasis-like model that will be used to test the drug delivery from bone substitutes.
We aim to develop tools to assess patient outcomes following treatment and removal of bone metastases. We will identify markers for enhanced patient outcomes, so as to predict which patients may benefit from more aggressive treatments to better their quality of life. We also aim to use 3D printed bone implants to help in the treatment of patients with bone metastasis. These implants will serve as a local reservoir for the anticancer drugs that will improve bone regeneration while also preventing tumor recurrence.
Early onset scoliosis (EOS) leads to severe, progressive three dimensional deformity of the spine in growing children, which is corrected either by external bracing or surgical placement of rods adjacent to the spine. Mice deficient in signaling through the type three fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR3-/-) develop scoliosis by four weeks, which worsens progressively with age. The mice therefore represent a unique resource to investigate biologic non-surgical treatments to slow the progression of spine curvature.
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