Institute for Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine

at the University of Washington


Charles Alpers, MD (Pathology)
Our research involves studies of kidney disease consequent to immune responses to foreign pathogens and as a consequence of diabetes.

Julia Y. Chang, DDS, PhD (Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery)
Our lab studies odontogenic epithelial stem cells (OESC), the ancestor of ameloblasts, which produce the hardest layer—enamel in the body. We used mouse incisor as our experimental model since mouse incisors have unlimited growth potential throughout the life. The goal of the recent project is to investigating the role of Fibroblast growth factor (FGF) signaling in maintenance, self-renewal, and differentiation of OESC and to fine-tune our newly established in vitro culture systems for expansion and characterization of OESC. The long-term goals are to explore applications of OESC in regenerative medicine, and to understand the roles of OESC in odontogenesis and the pathogenesis of odontogenic tumors.

Benjamin Freedman, PhD (Nephrology)
Our laboratory has developed techniques to efficiently differentiate hPSCs into kidney organoids in a reproducible, multi-well format – a prototype ‘kidney-in-a-dish’. In addition, we have generated hPSC lines carrying naturally occurring or engineered mutations relevant to human kidney diseases, such as polycystic kidney disease and nephrotic syndrome. The goal of our research is to use these new tools to model human kidney disease and identify therapeutic approaches, including kidney regeneration.

William R. Henderson, Jr., MD (Medicine/Allergy and Infectious Diseases)
Study aims of the Henderson laboratory are to address the role of progenitor cells in lung repair in mouse models of pulmonary fibrosis and asthma. For this, stem cells (embryonic and adult bone marrow-derived mouse and human cells) will be isolated and manipulated ex vivo in culture prior to in vivo administration in mice with fibrotic lungs. Important goals are to determine if engrafted cells proliferate and repair/regenerate damaged lung tissue. The effect of small molecule inhibitors of key signaling pathways in the airway fibrotic process will also be examined in these studies that may lead to novel therapies for patients with airway injury and fibrosis.

Anne Hocking, PhD (Surgery)
The two objectives of our laboratory are: 1) to determine the impact of the diabetic metabolic environment of high glucose and fatty acids on MSC regulation of the local cellular responses to injury; and 2) to determining whether therapeutically administered MSCs reduce hypertrophic scarring by releasing soluble factors that regulate fibroproliferative responses to cutaneous injury.

Edward J. Kelly, PhD (Pharmaceutics)
Utility of embryonic stem (ES) cells as a source of human hepatocytes.

Akio Kobayashi, PhD (Nephrology)
The primary interest of the Kobayashi laboratory is to understand the cellular and molecular regulatory mechanisms leading to the establishment of the mammalian kidney using the mouse as a model system. The laboratory also focuses on understanding the genes that are involved in reprogramming kidney cell types so that it can be ultimately possible to restore kidney function in patients with kidney disease, ultimately eliminating the need for dialysis or renal transplantation.

Gustavo Matute-Bello, MD (Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine)
Our laboratory is interested in the role of resident lung stem cells in the response of the lung to injury. Ultimately we want to determine whether therapeutic strategies involving lung resident stem cells could be useful for the treatment of acute lung injury and repair.

John K. McGuire, MD (Pediatrics)
My laboratory work is directed at understanding how epithelial responses to acute injury and infection regulate lung repair and resolution of inflammation. Our work has specifically focused on understanding the role of matrix metalloproteinases in controlling lung epithelial regeneration and lung epithelial cell interactions with inflammatory cells.

David Parichy, PhD (Biology)
Our research program uses the zebrafish and related species to answer a variety of biological questions having both basic and translational relevance. Current efforts are focusing on: the establishment, maintenance, and recruitment of post-embryonic stem cells in the context of normal development, evolutionary diversification, and melanoma; the genes and cell behaviors underlying adult pigment pattern formation and how these mechanisms have evolved between closely related species to generate strikingly different pigment patterns; and the molecular mechanisms of the larval-to-adult transformation, or metamorphosis, which generates the adult form.

David W. Raible, PhD (Biological Structure)
We are interested in the development of the peripheral nervous system using zebrafish as a model. Current research focuses on two areas: sensory neurons derived from neural crest and the mechanosensory lateral line system.

Kelly R. Stevens, PhD (Bioengineering, Pathology)
Our research is focused on developing new technologies to assemble synthetic human tissues from stem cells, and to remotely control these tissues after implantation in a patient. To do this, we use diverse tools from stem cell biology, tissue engineering, synthetic biology, microfabrication, and bioprinting. We seek to translate our work into new regenerative therapies for patients with heart and liver disease.

Valera Vasioukhin (Fred Hutch)
Our laboratory studies the mechanisms and significance of cell polarity and cell adhesion in normal mammalian development and cancer.


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