Associate Professor Jelena Rnjak-Kovacina

Associate Professor Jelena Rnjak-Kovacina

Associate Professor

Education & Training

Postdoctoral scholar- Department of Biomedical Engineering, Tufts University, Boston, USA, 2011-2013

Research area: Development of novel silk-based biomaterials for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, Supervisor: Prof David Kaplan

Doctor of Philosophy, School of Molecular Bioscience, University of Sydney, 2011

Research area: Development of human elastin-based dermal substitutes for the treatment of severe burn injuries, Supervisor: Prof Antony Weiss

Bachelor of Science (Molecular Biology & Genetics) (Honours I) (University Medal),University of Sydney, 2007

Engineering
Grad Sch: Biomedical Eng

Dr Jelena Rnjak-Kovacina is a Scientia Associate Professor and ARC Future Fellow leading a multidisciplinary group at the Graduate School of Biomedical Engineering, UNSW Sydney in Australia.

Her research interests are at the interface of biology and engineering, focusing on the development of biomimetic materials that direct cellular interactions for enhanced vascularisation and for the treatment of cardiovascular disease. In particular, she develops novel silk-based biomaterials and investigates how biomaterial properties translate to biological outcomes.

She completed her doctoral degree in Anthony Weiss' lab at the University of Sydney and her postdoctoral training in David Kaplan’s group at Tufts University in Boston. She joined UNSW in 2014 where her research has been supported by funding from the Australian Research Council, the National Heart Foundation, the National Health & Medical Research Council, and NSW Health. She is the recipient of multiple awards, including most recently, the NSW Ministerial Award for Rising Stars in Cardiovascular Research and the Early Career Researcher of the Year (Physical Sciences) in the NSW Premier's Prizes for Science & Engineering.

She is actively involved in the Australasian MedTech sector, including as Vice President of the Australasian Society for Biomaterials & Tissue Engineering (ASBTE), board member of the Australian Cardiovascular Alliance (ACvA) Bioengineering flagship, Fellow of the Tissue Engineering & Regenerative Medicine International Society, and through editorial roles for multiple journals. She is passionate about research training and communication.

 


 


 

Location
Samuels Building F25 Level 5, Room 507 UNSW Sydney NSW 2052 AUSTRALIA
  • Book Chapters | 2017
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Daamen WF; Orbanić D; Rodríguez-Cabello JC; Weiss AS, 2017, '2.18 Elastin biopolymers', in Comprehensive Biomaterials II, pp. 412 - 437, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-803581-8.10187-0
    Book Chapters | 2017
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Daamen WF; Orbanić D; Rodríguez-Cabello JC; Weiss AS, 2017, 'Elastin Biopolymers', in Comprehensive Biomaterials II, Elsevier, pp. 412 - 437, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/b978-0-12-803581-8.10187-0
    Book Chapters | 2013
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Weiss AS, 2013, 'The Role of Elastin in Wound Healing and Dermal Substitute Design', in Kamolz L-P; Lumenta DB (ed.), Dermal Replacements in General, Burn, and Plastic Surgery, Springer Science & Business, pp. 57 - 66
    Book Chapters | 2011
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Daamen WF; Pierna M; Rodríguez-Cabello JC; Weiss AS, 2011, 'Elastin Biopolymers', in Comprehensive Biomaterials, Elsevier, pp. 329 - 346, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/b978-0-08-055294-1.00071-4
    Book Chapters | 2011
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Daamen, WF ; Pierna, M ; Rodriguez-Cabello, JC ; Weiss, AS , 2011, 'Elastin Biopolymers', in Ducheyne P; Healy K; Hutmacher DE; Grainger DW; Kirkpatrick CJ (ed.), Comprehensive Biomaterials, Elsevier
  • Journal articles | 2024
    Ho MH; van Hilst Q; Cui X; Ramaswamy Y; Woodfield T; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG; Lim KS, 2024, 'From Adhesion to Detachment: Strategies to Design Tissue-Adhesive Hydrogels', Advanced NanoBiomed Research, 4, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/anbr.202300090
    Journal articles | 2024
    Ho MH; van Hilst Q; Cui X; Ramaswamy Y; Woodfield T; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG; Lim KS, 2024, 'From Adhesion to Detachment: Strategies to Design Tissue‐Adhesive Hydrogels', Advanced NanoBiomed Research, 4, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/anbr.202470021
    Journal articles | 2024
    Ho TTP; Tran HA; Doan VK; Maitz J; Li Z; Wise SG; Lim KS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2024, 'Natural Polymer-Based Materials for Wound Healing Applications', Advanced NanoBiomed Research, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/anbr.202300131
    Journal articles | 2024
    Jiang S; Wise SG; Kovacic JC; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lord MS, 2024, 'Biomaterials containing extracellular matrix molecules as biomimetic next-generation vascular grafts', Trends in Biotechnology, 42, pp. 369 - 381, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tibtech.2023.09.009
    Journal articles | 2024
    Karimi F; Farbehi N; Ziaee F; Lau K; Monfared M; Kordanovski M; Joukhdar H; Molly TG; Nordon R; Kilian KA; Stenzel MH; Lim KS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2024, 'Photocrosslinked Silk Fibroin Microgel Scaffolds for Biomedical Applications', Advanced Functional Materials, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adfm.202313354
    Journal articles | 2024
    Major G; Ahn M; Cho WW; Santos M; Wise J; Phillips E; Wise SG; Jang J; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Woodfield T; Lim KS, 2024, 'Programming temporal stiffness cues within extracellular matrix hydrogels for modelling cancer niches', Materials Today Bio, 25, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mtbio.2024.101004
    Journal articles | 2024
    Major GS; Doan VK; Longoni A; Bilek MMM; Wise SG; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Yeo GC; Lim KS, 2024, 'Mapping the microcarrier design pathway to modernise clinical mesenchymal stromal cell expansion', Trends in Biotechnology, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tibtech.2024.01.001
    Journal articles | 2023
    Grant AJ; Yang N; Moore MJ; Lam YT; Michael PL; Chan AHP; Santos M; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Tan RP; Wise SG, 2023, 'Selective NLRP3 Inflammasome Inhibitor MCC950 Suppresses Inflammation and Facilitates Healing in Vascular Materials', Advanced Science, 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/advs.202300521
    Journal articles | 2023
    Joukhdar H; Och Z; Tran H; Heu C; Vasquez GM; Sultana N; Stevens M; Dokos S; Lim KS; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2023, 'Imparting Multi-Scalar Architectural Control into Silk Materials Using a Simple Multi-Functional Ice-Templating Fabrication Platform', Advanced Materials Technologies, 8, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/admt.202201642
    Journal articles | 2023
    Kim HN; Elgundi Z; Lin X; Fu L; Tang F; Moh ESX; Jung MS; Chandrasekar K; Bartlett-Tomasetig F; Foster C; Packer NH; Whitelock JM; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lord MS, 2023, 'Engineered short forms of perlecan enhance angiogenesis by potentiating growth factor signalling', Journal of Controlled Release, 362, pp. 184 - 196, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jconrel.2023.08.052
    Journal articles | 2023
    Lau K; Fu L; Zhang A; Akhavan B; Whitelock J; Bilek MM; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2023, 'Recombinant perlecan domain V covalently immobilized on silk biomaterials via plasma immersion ion implantation supports the formation of functional endothelium', Journal of Biomedical Materials Research - Part A, 111, pp. 825 - 839, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jbm.a.37525
    Journal articles | 2023
    Longoni A; Major GS; Jiang S; Farrugia BL; Kieser DC; Woodfield TBF; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lim KS, 2023, 'Pristine gelatin incorporation as a strategy to enhance the biofunctionality of poly(vinyl alcohol)-based hydrogels for tissue engineering applications', Biomaterials Science, 12, pp. 134 - 150, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d3bm01172k
    Journal articles | 2023
    Molley TG; Jiang S; Ong L; Kopecky C; Ranaweera CD; Jalandhra GK; Milton L; Kardia E; Zhou Z; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Waters SA; Toh YC; Kilian KA, 2023, 'Gas-modulating microcapsules for spatiotemporal control of hypoxia', Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 120, pp. e2217557120, http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2217557120
    Journal articles | 2023
    Moore MJ; Lam YT; Santos M; Tan RP; Yang N; Hung J; Li Z; Kilian KA; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Pitts JB; Menzel H; Wise SG, 2023, 'Evaluation of the Immune Response to Chitosan-graft-poly(caprolactone) Biopolymer Scaffolds', ACS Biomaterials Science and Engineering, 9, pp. 3320 - 3334, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsbiomaterials.3c00553
    Journal articles | 2023
    Soliman BG; Longoni A; Wang M; Li W; Bernal PN; Cianciosi A; Lindberg GCJ; Malda J; Groll J; Jungst T; Levato R; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Woodfield TBF; Zhang YS; Lim KS, 2023, 'Programming Delayed Dissolution Into Sacrificial Bioinks For Dynamic Temporal Control of Architecture within 3D-Bioprinted Constructs', Advanced Functional Materials, 33, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adfm.202210521
    Journal articles | 2023
    Soliman BG; Longoni A; Wang M; Li W; Bernal PN; Cianciosi A; Lindberg GCJ; Malda J; Groll J; Jungst T; Levato R; Rnjak‐Kovacina J; Woodfield TBF; Zhang YS; Lim KS, 2023, 'Programming Delayed Dissolution Into Sacrificial Bioinks For Dynamic Temporal Control of Architecture within 3D‐Bioprinted Constructs (Adv. Funct. Mater. 8/2023)', Advanced Functional Materials, 33, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adfm.202370047
    Journal articles | 2023
    Thai MT; Phan PT; Tran HA; Nguyen CC; Hoang TT; Davies J; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Phan HP; Lovell NH; Do TN, 2023, 'Advanced Soft Robotic System for In Situ 3D Bioprinting and Endoscopic Surgery', Advanced Science, 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/advs.202205656
    Journal articles | 2023
    Tran HA; Hoang TT; Maraldo A; Do TN; Kaplan DL; Lim KS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2023, 'Emerging silk fibroin materials and their applications: New functionality arising from innovations in silk crosslinking', Materials Today, 65, pp. 244 - 259, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mattod.2023.03.027
    Journal articles | 2022
    Amin ML; Deng K; Tran HA; Singh R; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Thorn P, 2022, 'Glucose-Dependent Insulin Secretion from β Cell Spheroids Is Enhanced by Embedding into Softer Alginate Hydrogels Functionalised with RGD Peptide', Bioengineering, 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/bioengineering9120722
    Journal articles | 2022
    Karimi F; Lau K; Kim HN; Och Z; Lim KS; Whitelock J; Lord M; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2022, 'Surface Biofunctionalization of Silk Biomaterials Using Dityrosine Cross-Linking', ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, 14, pp. 31551 - 31566, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsami.2c03345
    Journal articles | 2022
    Lau K; Heu C; Moore MJ; Zhang A; Akhavan B; Wise SG; Bilek MMM; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2022, 'Effect of plasma ion immersion implantation on physiochemical and biological properties of silk towards creating a versatile biomaterial platform', Materials Today Advances, 13, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mtadv.2022.100212
    Journal articles | 2022
    Man K; Joukhdar H; Manz XD; Brunet MY; Jiang LH; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Yang XB, 2022, 'Bone tissue engineering using 3D silk scaffolds and human dental pulp stromal cells epigenetic reprogrammed with the selective histone deacetylase inhibitor MI192', Cell and Tissue Research, 388, pp. 565 - 581, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00441-022-03613-0
    Journal articles | 2022
    Moore MJ; Tan RP; Yang N; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG, 2022, 'Bioengineering artificial blood vessels from natural materials', Trends in Biotechnology, 40, pp. 693 - 707, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tibtech.2021.11.003
    Journal articles | 2022
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Choi YS; Lim KS, 2022, 'Biofabrication Applications', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 11, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.202202934
    Journal articles | 2022
    Romanazzo S; Kopecky C; Jiang S; Doshi R; Mukund V; Srivastava P; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kelly K; Kilian KA, 2022, 'Biomaterials directed activation of a cryostable therapeutic secretome in induced pluripotent stem cell derived mesenchymal stromal cells', Journal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine, 16, pp. 1008 - 1018, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/term.3347
    Journal articles | 2022
    Soliman BG; Major GS; Atienza-Roca P; Murphy CA; Longoni A; Alcala-Orozco CR; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Gawlitta D; Woodfield TBF; Lim KS, 2022, 'Development and Characterization of Gelatin-Norbornene Bioink to Understand the Interplay between Physical Architecture and Micro-Capillary Formation in Biofabricated Vascularized Constructs', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 11, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.202101873
    Journal articles | 2022
    Soliman BG; Major GS; Atienza‐Roca P; Murphy CA; Longoni A; Alcala‐Orozco CR; Rnjak‐Kovacina J; Gawlitta D; Woodfield TBF; Lim KS, 2022, 'Development and Characterization of Gelatin‐Norbornene Bioink to Understand the Interplay between Physical Architecture and Micro‐Capillary Formation in Biofabricated Vascularized Constructs (Adv. Healthcare Mater. 2/2022)', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 11, pp. 2270007 - 2270007, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.202270007
    Journal articles | 2021
    Chandrasekar K; Farrugia BL; Johnson L; Marks D; Irving D; Elgundi Z; Lau K; Kim HN; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Bilek MM; Whitelock JM; Lord MS, 2021, 'Effect of Recombinant Human Perlecan Domain V Tethering Method on Protein Orientation and Blood Contacting Activity on Polyvinyl Chloride', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.202100388
    Journal articles | 2021
    Joukhdar H; Seifert A; Jüngst T; Groll J; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2021, 'Ice Templating Soft Matter: Fundamental Principles and Fabrication Approaches to Tailor Pore Structure and Morphology and Their Biomedical Applications', Advanced Materials, 33, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adma.202100091
    Journal articles | 2021
    Lam YT; Tan RP; Michael PL; Lau K; Yang N; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG, 2021, 'Bioengineering silk into blood vessels', Biochemical Society Transactions, 49, pp. 2271 - 2286, http://dx.doi.org/10.1042/BST20210359
    Journal articles | 2021
    Lau K; Waterhouse A; Akhavan B; Gao L; Kim HN; Tang F; Whitelock JM; Bilek MM; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2021, 'Biomimetic silk biomaterials: Perlecan-functionalized silk fibroin for use in blood-contacting devices', Acta Biomaterialia, 132, pp. 162 - 175, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actbio.2021.02.014
    Journal articles | 2021
    Longoni A; Li J; Lindberg GCJ; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise LM; Hooper GJ; Woodfield TBF; Kieser DC; Lim KS, 2021, 'Strategies for inclusion of growth factors into 3D printed bone grafts', Essays in Biochemistry, 65, pp. 569 - 585, http://dx.doi.org/10.1042/EBC20200130
    Journal articles | 2021
    Monfared M; Mawad D; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Stenzel MH, 2021, '3D bioprinting of dual-crosslinked nanocellulose hydrogels for tissue engineering applications', Journal of Materials Chemistry B, 9, pp. 6163 - 6175, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d1tb00624j
    Journal articles | 2021
    Polonchuk L; Surija L; Lee MH; Sharma P; Ming CLC; Richter F; Ben-Sefer E; Rad MA; Sarmast HMS; Al Shamery W; Tran HA; Vettori L; Haeusermann F; Filipe EC; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Cox T; Tipper J; Kabakova I; Gentile C, 2021, 'Towards engineering heart tissues from bioprinted cardiac spheroids', Biofabrication, 13, http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1758-5090/ac14ca
    Journal articles | 2021
    Yan Y; Travaglini L; Lau K; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Ta D; Eslami M; Yang S; Lauto A; Officer DL; Mawad D, 2021, 'Impact of Sterilization on a Conjugated Polymer-Based Bioelectronic Patch', ACS Applied Polymer Materials, 3, pp. 2541 - 2552, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsapm.1c00131
    Journal articles | 2021
    Yang N; Moore MJ; Michael PL; Santos M; Lam YT; Bao S; Ng MKC; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Tan RP; Wise SG, 2021, 'Silk Fibroin Scaffold Architecture Regulates Inflammatory Responses and Engraftment of Bone Marrow-Mononuclear Cells', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.202100615
    Journal articles | 2020
    Atienza-Roca P; Kieser DC; Cui X; Bathish B; Ramaswamy Y; Hooper GJ; Clarkson AN; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Martens PJ; Wise LM; Woodfield TBF; Lim KS, 2020, 'Visible light mediated PVA-tyramine hydrogels for covalent incorporation and tailorable release of functional growth factors', Biomaterials Science, 8, pp. 5005 - 5019, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0bm00603c
    Journal articles | 2020
    Baptista M; Joukhdar H; Alcala-Orozco CR; Lau K; Jiang S; Cui X; He S; Tang F; Heu C; Woodfield TBF; Lim KS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2020, 'Silk fibroin photo-lyogels containing microchannels as a biomaterial platform for: In situ tissue engineering', Biomaterials Science, 8, pp. 7093 - 7105, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0bm01010c
    Journal articles | 2020
    Cui X; Soliman BG; Alcala-Orozco CR; Li J; Vis MAM; Santos M; Wise SG; Levato R; Malda J; Woodfield TBF; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lim KS, 2020, 'Correction to: Rapid Photocrosslinking of Silk Hydrogels with High Cell Density and Enhanced Shape Fidelity (Adv. Healthcare Mater, (2020), 9, (1901667), 10.1002/adhm.201901667)', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.202001801
    Journal articles | 2020
    Cui X; Soliman BG; Alcala-Orozco CR; Li J; Vis MAM; Santos M; Wise SG; Levato R; Malda J; Woodfield TBF; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lim KS, 2020, 'Rapid Photocrosslinking of Silk Hydrogels with High Cell Density and Enhanced Shape Fidelity', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 9, pp. e1901667, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.201901667
    Journal articles | 2020
    Eslami M; Zeglio E; Alosaimi G; Yan Y; Ruprai H; Macmillan A; Seidel J; Lauto A; Joukhdar H; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Mawad D, 2020, 'A One Step Procedure toward Conductive Suspensions of Liposome-Polyaniline Complexes', Macromolecular Bioscience, 20, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mabi.202000103
    Journal articles | 2020
    Lau K; Akhavan B; Lord MS; Bilek MM; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2020, 'Dry Surface Treatments of Silk Biomaterials and Their Utility in Biomedical Applications', ACS Biomaterials Science and Engineering, 6, pp. 5431 - 5452, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsbiomaterials.0c00888
    Journal articles | 2020
    Lin X; Tang F; Jiang S; Khamis H; Bongers A; Whitelock JM; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2020, 'A Biomimetic Approach toward Enhancing Angiogenesis: Recombinantly Expressed Domain V of Human Perlecan Is a Bioactive Molecule That Promotes Angiogenesis and Vascularization of Implanted Biomaterials', Adv. Sci., 7, pp. 2000900, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/advs.202000900
    Journal articles | 2020
    Tang F; Manz XD; Bongers A; Odell RA; Joukhdar H; Whitelock JM; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2020, 'Microchannels are an architectural cue that promotes integration and vascularization of silk biomaterials in vivo', ACS Biomaterials Science and Engineering, 6, pp. 1476 - 1486, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsbiomaterials.9b01624
    Journal articles | 2020
    Vettori L; Sharma P; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Gentile C, 2020, '3D Bioprinting of Cardiovascular Tissues for In Vivo and In Vitro Applications Using Hybrid Hydrogels Containing Silk Fibroin: State of the Art and Challenges', Current Tissue Microenvironment Reports, 1, pp. 261 - 276, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s43152-020-00026-5
    Journal articles | 2019
    Chan AHP; Filipe EC; Tan RP; Santos M; Yang N; Hung J; Feng J; Nazir S; Benn AJ; Ng MKC; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG, 2019, 'Altered processing enhances the efficacy of small-diameter silk fibroin vascular grafts', Scientific Reports, 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-53972-y
    Journal articles | 2019
    Holland C; Numata K; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Seib FP, 2019, 'The Biomedical Use of Silk: Past, Present, Future', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 8, pp. e1800465, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.201800465
    Journal articles | 2019
    Lim KS; Baptista M; Moon S; Woodfield TBF; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2019, 'Microchannels in Development, Survival, and Vascularisation of Tissue Analogues for Regenerative Medicine', Trends in Biotechnology, 37, pp. 1189 - 1201, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tibtech.2019.04.004
    Journal articles | 2019
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Gerrand YW; Wray LS; Tan B; Joukhdar H; Kaplan DL; Morrison WA; Mitchell GM, 2019, 'Vascular Pedicle and Microchannels: Simple Methods Toward Effective In Vivo Vascularization of 3D Scaffolds', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 8, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.201901106
    Journal articles | 2018
    Filipe EC; Santos M; Hung J; Lee BSL; Yang N; Chan AHP; Ng MKC; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG, 2018, 'Rapid Endothelialization of Off-the-Shelf Small Diameter Silk Vascular Grafts', JACC: Basic to Translational Science, 3, pp. 38 - 53, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jacbts.2017.12.003
    Journal articles | 2018
    Kondyurin A; Lau K; Tang F; Akhavan B; Chrzanowski W; Lord MS; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Bilek MM, 2018, 'Plasma Ion Implantation of Silk Biomaterials Enabling Direct Covalent Immobilization of Bioactive Agents for Enhanced Cellular Responses', ACS Applied Materials and Interfaces, 10, pp. 17605 - 17616, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsami.8b03182
    Journal articles | 2018
    Lord M; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Tang F; Whitelock J, 2018, 'Glycosaminoglycan and Proteoglycan-Based Biomaterials: Current Trends and Future Perspectives', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 7, pp. 1701042 - 1701042, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.201701042
    Journal articles | 2018
    Lord MS; Tang F; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Smith JGW; Melrose J; Whitelock JM, 2018, 'The multifaceted roles of perlecan in fibrosis', Matrix Biology, 68-69, pp. 150 - 166, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.matbio.2018.02.013
    Journal articles | 2018
    Tan RP; Chan AHP; Lennartsson K; Miravet MM; Lee BSL; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Clayton ZE; Cooke JP; Ng MKC; Patel S; Wise SG, 2018, 'Integration of induced pluripotent stem cell-derived endothelial cells with polycaprolactone/gelatin-based electrospun scaffolds for enhanced therapeutic angiogenesis', Stem Cell Research and Therapy, 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13287-018-0824-2
    Journal articles | 2017
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Tang F; Lin X; Whitelock JM; Lord MS, 2017, 'Recombinant Domain V of Human Perlecan Is a Bioactive Vascular Proteoglycan', Biotechnology Journal, 12, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/biot.201700196
    Journal articles | 2016
    Filipe E; Santos M; Hung J; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Ng M; Wise S, 2016, 'Bioengineering Synthetic Silk Conduits for Arterial Revascularisation', Heart, Lung and Circulation, 25, pp. S32 - S32, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.hlc.2016.06.072
    Journal articles | 2016
    Ghezzi CE; Wang L; Behlau I; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wang S; Goldstein MH; Liu J; Marchant JK; Rosenblatt MI; Kaplan DL, 2016, 'Degradation of silk films in multipocket corneal stromal rabbit models', Journal of Applied Biomaterials and Functional Materials, 14, pp. e266 - e276, http://dx.doi.org/10.5301/jabfm.5000274
    Journal articles | 2016
    Lord M; Chuang C; Rnjak‐Kovacina J; Cheng B; Lyons G; Whitelock J, 2016, 'Bioengineering Proteoglycan‐based Matrices For Blood Contacting Applications', The FASEB Journal, 30, http://dx.doi.org/10.1096/fasebj.30.1_supplement.622.2
    Journal articles | 2016
    Lord MS; Cheng B; Tang F; Lyons JG; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Whitelock JM, 2016, 'Bioengineered human heparin with anticoagulant activity', Metabolic Engineering, 38, pp. 105 - 114, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ymben.2016.07.006
    Journal articles | 2016
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Tang F; Whitelock JM; Lord MS, 2016, 'Silk biomaterials functionalized with recombinant domain V of human perlecan modulate endothelial cell and platelet interactions for vascular applications', Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces, 148, pp. 130 - 138, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.colsurfb.2016.08.039
    Journal articles | 2016
    Roberts JJ; Farrugia BL; Green RA; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Martens PJ, 2016, 'In situ formation of poly(vinyl alcohol)–heparin hydrogels for mild encapsulation and prolonged release of basic fibroblast growth factor and vascular endothelial growth factor', Journal of Tissue Engineering, 7, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2041731416677132
    Journal articles | 2015
    Chen Y; Lin Y; Davis KM; Wang Q; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Li C; Isberg RR; Kumamoto CA; Mecsas J; Kaplan DL, 2015, 'Robust bioengineered 3D functional human intestinal epithelium', Scientific Reports, 5, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep13708
    Journal articles | 2015
    Ghezzi CE; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kaplan DL, 2015, 'Corneal Tissue Engineering: Recent Advances and Future Perspectives', Tissue Engineering - Part B: Reviews, 21, pp. 278 - 287, http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/ten.teb.2014.0397
    Journal articles | 2015
    Lord MS; Farrugia BL; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Whitelock JM, 2015, 'Current serological possibilities for the diagnosis of arthritis with special focus on proteins and proteoglycans from the extracellular matrix', Expert Review of Molecular Diagnostics, 15, pp. 77 - 95, http://dx.doi.org/10.1586/14737159.2015.979158
    Journal articles | 2015
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Desrochers TM; Burke KA; Kaplan DL, 2015, 'The effect of sterilization on silk fibroin biomaterial properties', Macromolecular Bioscience, 15, pp. 861 - 874, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mabi.201500013
    Journal articles | 2015
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wray LS; Burke KA; Torregrosa T; Golinski JM; Huang W; Kaplan DL, 2015, 'Lyophilized Silk Sponges: A Versatile Biomaterial Platform for Soft Tissue Engineering', ACS Biomaterials Science and Engineering, 1, pp. 260 - 270, http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ab500149p
    Journal articles | 2015
    Zhang W; Wray LS; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Xu L; Zou D; Wang S; Zhang M; Dong J; Li G; Kaplan DL; Jiang X, 2015, 'Vascularization of hollow channel-modified porous silk scaffolds with endothelial cells for tissue regeneration', Biomaterials, 56, pp. 68 - 77, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2015.03.053
    Journal articles | 2014
    Liu H; Bao S; Wise SG; Weiss AS; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kaplan DL; Bilek MMM; Fei J, 2014, 'Biocompatibility of silk-tropoelastin protein polymers', Biomaterials, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2014.03.024
    Journal articles | 2014
    Liu H; Wise SG; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kaplan DL; Bilek MMM; Weiss AS; Fei J; Bao S, 2014, 'Biocompatibility of silk-tropoelastin protein polymers', Biomaterials, 35, pp. 5138 - 5147, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2014.03.024
    Journal articles | 2014
    McNamara SL; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lo TJ; Kaplan DL; Schmidt DF, 2014, 'Silk as a biocohesive sacrificial binder in the fabrication of hydroxyapatite load bearing scaffolds', Biomaterials, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2014.05.013
    Journal articles | 2014
    McNamara SL; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Schmidt DF; Lo TJ; Kaplan DL, 2014, 'Silk as a biocohesive sacrificial binder in the fabrication of hydroxyapatite load bearing scaffolds', Biomaterials, 35, pp. 6941 - 6953, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2014.05.013
    Journal articles | 2014
    Partlow BP; Hanna CW; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Moreau JE; Applegate MB; Burke KA; Marelli B; Mitropoulos AN; Omenetto FG; Kaplan DL, 2014, 'Highly tunable elastomeric silk biomaterials', Advanced Functional Materials, 24, pp. 4615 - 4624, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adfm.201400526
    Journal articles | 2014
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wray LS; Golinski JM; Kaplan DL, 2014, 'Arrayed hollow channels in silk-based scaffolds provide functional outcomes for engineering critically sized tissue constructs', Advanced Functional Materials, 24, pp. 2188 - 2196, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adfm.201302901
    Journal articles | 2014
    Wise SG; Yeo GC; Hiob MA; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kaplan DL; Ng MKC; Weiss AS, 2014, 'Tropoelastin: A versatile, bioactive assembly module', Acta Biomaterialia, 10, pp. 1532 - 1541, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actbio.2013.08.003
    Journal articles | 2014
    Wu J; Funderburgh JL; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kaplan DL; Du Y; Funderburgh ML, 2014, 'Corneal stromal bioequivalents secreted on patterned silk substrates', Biomaterials, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2013.12.078
    Journal articles | 2014
    Wu J; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Du Y; Funderburgh ML; Kaplan DL; Funderburgh JL, 2014, 'Corneal stromal bioequivalents secreted on patterned silk substrates', Biomaterials, 35, pp. 3744 - 3755, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2013.12.078
    Journal articles | 2013
    Ghezzi CE; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Weiss AS; Kaplan DL, 2013, 'Multifunctional silk-tropoelastin biomaterial systems', Israel Journal of Chemistry, 53, pp. 777 - 786, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ijch.201300082
    Journal articles | 2013
    Reddel CJ; Cultrone D; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Weiss AS; Burgess JK, 2013, 'Tropoelastin modulates TGF-β1-induced expression of VEGF and CTGF in airway smooth muscle cells', Matrix Biology, 32, pp. 407 - 413, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.matbio.2013.04.003
    Journal articles | 2013
    Seib FP; Jones GT; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lin Y; Kaplan DL, 2013, 'pH-Dependent Anticancer Drug Release from Silk Nanoparticles', Advanced Healthcare Materials, 2, pp. 1606 - 1611, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adhm.201300034
    Journal articles | 2013
    Shang K; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Lin Y; Hayden RS; Tao H; Kaplan DL, 2013, 'Accelerated In Vitro Degradation of Optically Clear Low beta-Sheet Silk Films by Enzyme-Mediated Pretreatment', TRANSLATIONAL VISION SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY, 2, http://dx.doi.org/10.1167/tvst.2.3.2
    Journal articles | 2012
    Rnjak-kovacina J; Wise SG; Li Z; Maitz PK; Young C; Wang Y; Weiss AS, 2012, 'Electrospun synthetic human elastin:collagen composite scaffolds for dermal tissue engineering', ACTA Biomaterialia, 8, pp. 3714 - 3722, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actbio.2012.06.032
    Journal articles | 2012
    Wray LS; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Mandal BB; Schmidt DF; Gil ES; Kaplan DL, 2012, 'A silk-based scaffold platform with tunable architecture for engineering critically-sized tissue constructs', Biomaterials, 33, pp. 9214 - 9224, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2012.09.017
    Journal articles | 2011
    Rnjak J; Annabi N; Dehghani F; Weiss AS, 2011, 'Elastin-based dermal substitutes', 24th European Conference on Biomaterials - Annual Conference of the European Society for Biomaterials
    Journal articles | 2011
    Rnjak J; Wise SG; Mithieux SM; Weiss AS, 2011, 'Severe burn injuries and the role of Elastin in the design of dermal substitutes', Tissue Engineering - Part B: Reviews, 17, pp. 81 - 91, http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/ten.teb.2010.0452
    Journal articles | 2011
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Weiss AS, 2011, 'Increasing the pore size of electrospun scaffolds', Tissue Engineering - Part B: Reviews, 17, pp. 365 - 372, http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/ten.teb.2011.0235
    Journal articles | 2011
    Rnjak-kovacina J; Wise SG; Li Z; Maitz PK; Young C; Wang Y; Weiss A, 2011, 'Tailoring the porosity and pore size of electrospun synthetic human elastin scaffolds for dermal tissue engineering', Biomaterials, 32, pp. 6729 - 6736, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2011.05.065
    Journal articles | 2010
    Almine JF; Bax DV; Mithieux SM; Nivison-Smith L; Rnjak J; Waterhouse A; Wise SG; Weiss AS, 2010, 'ChemInform Abstract: Elastin-Based Materials', ChemInform, 41, pp. no - no, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/chin.201051252
    Journal articles | 2010
    Almine JF; Bax DV; Mithieux SM; Smith LN; Rnjak J; Waterhouse A; Wise SG; Weiss AS, 2010, 'Elastin-based materials', Chemical Society Reviews, 39, pp. 3371 - 3379, http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/b919452p
    Journal articles | 2010
    Hu X; Wang X; Rnjak J; Weiss AS; Kaplan DL, 2010, 'Biomaterials derived from silk-tropoelastin protein systems', Biomaterials, 31, pp. 8121 - 8131, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2010.07.044
    Journal articles | 2010
    Nivison-Smith L; Rnjak J; Weiss AS, 2010, 'Synthetic human elastin microfibers: Stable cross-linked tropoelastin and cell interactive constructs for tissue engineering applications', Acta Biomaterialia, 6, pp. 354 - 359, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.actbio.2009.08.011
    Journal articles | 2009
    Rnjak J; Li Z; Maitz PKM; Wise SG; Weiss AS, 2009, 'Primary human dermal fibroblast interactions with open weave three-dimensional scaffolds prepared from synthetic human elastin', Biomaterials, 30, pp. 6469 - 6477, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biomaterials.2009.08.017
  • Preprints | 2022
    Molley T; Jiang S; Kopecky C; Ranaweera C; Jalandhra G; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kilian K, 2022, Gas modulating microcapsules for spatiotemporal control of hypoxia, , http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/2022.09.02.506302
    Conference Abstracts | 2022
    Ziaee F; Du E; Li J; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Thordarson P; Nordon R, 2022, 'DEVELOPING FULLY DEFINED SELF-ASSEMBLY PEPTIDE HYDROGELS FOR HUMAN PLURIPOTENT STEM CELL CULTURE', in TISSUE ENGINEERING PART A, MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC, Vol. 28, pp. S537 - S537, https://www.webofscience.com/api/gateway?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000821187303022&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
    Conference Abstracts | 2021
    Braxton T; Lim K; Alcala-Orozco C; Joukhdar H; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Woodfield T; Jiang L-H; Jia X; Yang X, 2021, 'A NOVEL SILK REINFORCED BIPHASIC 3D PRINTED PEGT/PBT SCAFFOLD FOR OSTEOCHONDRAL TISSUE ENGINEERING', in TISSUE ENGINEERING PART A, MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC, NETHERLANDS, Maastricht, Vol. 28, pp. S227 - S227, presented at 6th World Congress of the Tissue-Engineering-and-Regenerative-Medicine-International-Society (TERMIS), NETHERLANDS, Maastricht, 15 November 2021 - 19 November 2021, https://www.webofscience.com/api/gateway?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000821187301040&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
    Preprints | 2021
    Yan Y; Travaglini L; Lau K; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Eslami M; Yang S; Lauto A; Officer D; Mawad D, 2021, Impact of sterilization on a conjugated polymer based bioelectronic patch, , http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/2021.01.19.427349
    Conference Abstracts | 2016
    Filipe E; Santos M; Hung J; Tan RP; Chan AP; Michael PL; Ng MK; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG, 2016, 'Bioengineered Silk Conduits are Effective for Small Diameter Revascularisation', in Circulation, American Heart Association, presented at Circulation
    Conference Abstracts | 2016
    Lord M; chuang C; rnjak-kovacina J; cheng B; lyons G; whitelock J, 2016, 'Bioengineering proteoglycan-based matrices for blood contacting applications', in The FASEB Journal, Federation of American Society of Experimental Biology (FASEB), San Diego, Vol. 6, pp. 622.2 - 622.2, presented at Experimental Biology 2016, San Diego, 02 April 2016 - 06 April 2016
    Conference Papers | 2016
    Passipieri J; Stroppel WL; Mintz E; Baker HB; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kaplan DL; Christ GJ, 2016, 'Further Development of Silk Biomaterials for a Tissue Engineered Muscle Repair (TEMR) Platform: Enhanced Cellular Coverage and Unidirectional Orientation of Muscle Progenitor Cells Following Bioreactor Pre-Conditioning', in Further Development of Silk Biomaterials for a Tissue Engineered Muscle Repair (TEMR) Platform: Enhanced Cellular Coverage and Unidirectional Orientation of Muscle Progenitor Cells Following Bioreacto, TISSUE ENGINEERING PART A, San Diego, pp. S87 - S87, presented at TISSUE ENGINEERING PART A, San Diego, 11 December 2016 - 14 December 2016
    Conference Abstracts | 2016
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Tang F; Whitelock JM; Lord MS, 2016, 'Domain V of Perlecan Covalently Immobilized on Silk Biomaterials Modulates Endothelial Cell and Platelet Interactions for Vascular Applications', in TISSUE ENGINEERING PART A, MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC, CA, San Diego, Vol. 22, pp. S20 - S21, presented at TERMIS - Americas Conference and Exhibition, CA, San Diego, 11 December 2016 - 14 December 2016
    Conference Abstracts | 2016
    Tang F; Lau K; Kondyurin A; Lord MS; Whitelock JM; Bilek MM; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2016, 'Plasma Immersion Ion Implantation Treatment of Silk Biomaterials Enhances Biological Function'
    Conference Abstracts | 2015
    Filipe EC; Santos M; Hung J; Tan RP; Chan AP; Michael PL; Ng MK; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wise SG, 2015, 'Water Vapor Annealing of Silk for Vascular Grafts', in TISSUE ENGINEERING PART A, MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC, MA, Boston, Vol. 21, pp. S211 - S211, presented at 4th TERMIS World Congress, MA, Boston, 08 September 2015 - 11 September 2015, https://www.webofscience.com/api/gateway?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000360205201426&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
    Conference Papers | 2015
    Knothe Tate ML; Pereira A; Kaplan D; Rnjak-Kovacina J, 2015, 'Computationally-Driven Design of Novel Drug Delivery Patches', in Computationally-Driven Design of Novel Drug Delivery Patches, Frontiers in Medical Devices Conference: Innovations in Modeling and Simulation - Using Modeling and Simulation at Different Stages in the Total Product Life Cycle, presented at Frontiers in Medical Devices Conference: Innovations in Modeling and Simulation - Using Modeling and Simulation at Different Stages in the Total Product Life Cycle, 18 May 2015 - 20 May 2015, http://bmes.org/meddevicesconference
    Conference Papers | 2015
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wray LS; Zhang W; Jiang X; Kaplan DL, 2015, 'Vascularization of Bioengineered Tissues: Additive Effects of Physical and Biological Cues', in TISSUE ENGINEERING PART A, MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC, MA, Boston, pp. S114 - S115, presented at 4th TERMIS World Congress, MA, Boston, 08 September 2015 - 11 September 2015, https://www.webofscience.com/api/gateway?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000360205201050&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
    Conference Papers | 2012
    Rnjak-Kovacina J; Wray LS; Mandal BB; Gil ES; Weiss AS; Kaplan DL, 2012, 'Versatile biomaterial scaffold platform for critically-sized tissue constructs', in JOURNAL OF TISSUE ENGINEERING AND REGENERATIVE MEDICINE, WILEY-BLACKWELL, pp. 387 - 387, https://www.webofscience.com/api/gateway?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000308313003231&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
    Patents |
    Wray, L ; Rnjak-Kovacina J; Kaplan DL, Silk-based scaffold for vascularizing engineered tissue construct comprises body containing hollow conduits disposed in a solid-state silk matrix, where the hollow conduits are arranged in a pre-determined pattern, Patent No. WO2013070907-A1

  • UNSW Faculty of Engineering Infrastructure Fund (lead CI) ‘Mechanical testing equipment for soft and anisotropic materials’, $270K, 2023
  • NSW Health Cardiovascular Research Capacity Program Collaborative Grants (lead CI)- ‘Engineering next generation aortic valve replacement materials’, $950K, 2023-2024
  •  NSW Cardiovascular Research Capacity Program EMCR Grant (lead CI)- ‘Novel strategy for chronic wound healing’ (2022-2024)
  • ARC Future Fellowship (CI-A) - ‘Engineering biomaterials that actively promote blood vessel growth’ (06/2022-2025)
  • NSW Health/Cardiovascular Research Capacity Program - Investigator Development Grants (lead CI), ‘Engineering vascular microenvironments on silk biomaterials for advanced medical implants’, 2020
  • Australia-Germany Joint Research Cooperation Scheme (DAAD) (lead CI), ‘Application of advanced scaffold fabrication technologies toward functional cardiac patches’, 2020-2021
  • ARC Linkage Project (co-CI), ‘Engineering a physiologically-relevant blood vessel in vitro’, 2019-2022
  • Innovative Manufacturing CRC (co-CI), ‘Engineering an advanced, high value bioreactor system for research and clinical applications’, 2019-2022
  • HRC Project Grant (PI), ‘Smart delivery of growth factors for treating osteonecrosis of the femoral head’, 2021-2022
  • HRC Sir Charles Hercules Health Research Fellowship (AI), ‘HRC Sir Charles Hercus Health Research Fellowship’, 2020-2022
  • MARSDEN Fast start (PI), ‘Harnessing macromolecular chemistry to mimic vascular developmental biology’, 2020-2021
  • NHMRC Project Grant (co-CI), ‘New Synthetic Conduits for Arterial Revascularisation’ 2019-2021, Marshall and Warren Award for the most innovative and potentially transformative project grant
  • Diabetes Australia (co-CI), ‘Bioengineered growth factor binding scaffolds for improved diabetic wound healing’, 2019
  • Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellowship (lead CI), ‘Biomaterial-directed vascularisation of bioengineered cardiac patches’, 2018-2022
  • ARC Discovery Project (DP150104242) (lead CI), ‘Novel biomimetic vascular biomaterials using extracellular matrix molecules’, 2015-2019;
  • UNSW Engineering Faculty Major Research Equipment Funding (lead CI), 'Medical device characterisation', 2018
  • UNSW Infrastructure Fund (AI), ‘Dynamic Mechanical Testing-ElectroForce’, 2017
  • UNSW Infrastructure Fund (AI), ‘High throughput Flash Purification System for Small Molecule and Polymer Separations’, 2017;
  • UNSW Network Lab Project (AI), ‘Molecular Surface Interaction Network Lab’, 2017-2018;
  • UNSW Faculty of Engineering Startup award (lead CI), 2016-2017;
  • UNSW Career Advancement Fund (lead CI), 2017-2018;
  • UNSW Minor Equipment Grants (lead CI), 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017;
  • UNSW Faculty of Engineering Early Career Researcher Award (lead CI), 2014.

 

  • UNSW Faculty of Engineering Leadership Award, 2021
  • NSW Early Career Researcher of the Year (Physical Sciences), NSW Premier's Prizes for Science & Engineering, 2020
  • Emerging Leader Award, Australasian Society for Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering (ABSTE), 2019
  • Travel award- NSW CVRN Travel Scholarship application, 2018
  • NSW Young Tall Poppy Science Award, Australian Institute of Policy & Science, 2018
  • Bob Fraser New Investigator Award, Matrix Biology Society of Australia & NZ, 2016
  • Fresh Science NSW, 2016
  • Finalist (Top 19) in the L’Oreal Women in Science Fellowship, 2015
  • Research featured in the American Chemical Society (ACS) Headline Science video series, 2015
  • Travel Award- Contributing to Australian Scholarship and Science (CASS) Foundation, 2015
  • Travel Award- Australasian Society for Biomaterials & Tissue Engineering (ASBTE), 2015
  • American Chemical Society (ACS) Editors’ Choice article, 2015
  • Best Early Career Researcher Oral Presentation Award- ASBTE, 2013
  • Best poster prize- ASBTE, 2009;
  • Best poster prize- 34th Lorne Conference on Protein Structure & Function, 2009
  • University Medal, University of Sydney, 2006.             

 

 

Research themes/projects 

Currently recruiting PhD and Honours students 

Novel silk biomaterials for cardiovascular & wound healing applications (ARC Future Fellowship, NSW Health)- The ability to reverse engineer the silkworm fiber has led to tremendous advancements in the field of silk materials over the last several decades, with silk fibroin materials applied to biomedical, food, and high technology industries. This progress is largely due to the ability to process silk into a regenerated silk fibroin solution that can be engineered into various material formats and stabilised by reintroducing the non-covalent native β-sheet protein structure. The next revolution in silk materials involves stabilising silk fibroin through covalent crosslinking using di-tyrosine bonds. These approaches have transformed silk into a material that is not only strong, but also elastic and flexible, making it compatible with modern fabrication approaches. This has significantly broadened silk material fabrication strategies to include photolithography, digital light processing, and extrusion-based 3D printing. We offer a range of projects to fabricate novel silk hydrogels and porous scaffolds based on this novel crosslinking approach for cardiovascular and wound healing applications. 

Collaborators: Prof David Kaplan (Tufts University), A/Prof Khoon Lim (University of Sydney)

 

Bioengineered tissue vascularisation strategies (ARC Future Fellowship)- Bioengineered tissues offer an alternative for the replacement and regeneration of organs and tissues damaged through injury or disease, but they currently have little clinical utility due to the lack of an adequate vascular supply, making vascularisation one of the biggest obstacles in translating biomaterials and tissue engineering research to the clinic. This project aims to understand the physical and biological cues that drive tissue vascularisation and replicate them in biomimetic silk-based biomaterial platforms. This involves (1) development of novel silk biomaterials with tuneable physical/architectural features, (2) silk functionalisation strategies, (3) bioengineering molecules of the vascular niche with specific features using recombinant DNA technology and protein expression and (4) establishment of appropriate assays and imaging modalities to assess vascularisation of 3D biomaterials. 

Collaborators: A/Prof Khoon Lim (University of Sydney), Dr Tomasz Juengst (University of Wuerzburg), Prof Juergen Groll (University of Wuerzburg), Prof John Whitelock & A/Prof Megan Lord (UNSW), Prof Marcela Bilek (University of Sydney)

More info: Webinar: Novel Biofabrication Approaches Enabled By Di-tyrosine Crosslinking Of Silk Fibroin (gelomics.com) 

 

Next-generation vascular devices (NSW Health)- The aim of this project is to develop next-generation biomaterial platforms for use in blood-contacting vascular devices, such as vascular grafts and heart valve leaflets. Silk-based vascular grafts and heart valve leaflets have the potential to overcome the physical, mechanical and biological shortcomings of the current clinical options by mimicking the morphological and mechanical structures found in the native tissue. This project also involves bioengineering models of healthy and atherosclerosis vessels in vitro. 

Collaborators: Prof Steven Wise (University of Sydney), Dr Anna Waterhouse (University of Sydney), A/Prof Khoon Lim (University of Sydney), A/Prof Bernd Gludovatz (UNSW), Dr Nona Farbehi (UNSW), Prof Martin Ng (RPA), Dr Michael Stevens (UNSW)

 

Professional Activities

  • Scientific Advisory Board, Australian Cardiovascular Alliance (ACvA) (2023-present)
  • Member of the Bioengineering Flagship Advisory Board, Australian Cardiovascular Alliance (ACvA) (2020-present)
  • Member of the Centre for Commercialisation of Regenerative Medicine (CCRM) Australia Advisory Board (2018-present)
  • Australasian Society for Biomaterials & Tissue Engineering, Vice President (2023-present), Treasurer & Secretary (2017-2023), member (2008-present)    
  • Australian Society for Medical Research (ASMR), member (2018-present) 
  • American Chemical Society (ACS), member (2015-present)
  • Matrix Biology Society of Australia and New Zealand, member (2014-present)
  • International Society for Matrix Biology, member (2014-present)
  • Tissue Engineering & Regenerative Medicine International Society (TERMIS), member (2012-present)
  • NIH Tissue Engineering Resource Centre, member (2011-2014)