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A bioengineer by training, Dr. Yang works at the interface of materials science, biology, engineering, and medicine. She is the Director and PI for Stem Cells and Biomaterials Engineering Laboratory at Stanford University, jointly supported by Departments of Orthopaedic Surgery and Bioengineering. Dr. Yang has extensive expertise in developing novel biomaterials and stem cell-based therapeutics for musculoskeletal tissue engineering, or engineering 3D in vitro cancer models for drug screening and mechanistic discovery. Her research group is particularly interested in developing biomaterials and cell-based therapeutics to improve regeneration of various musculoskeletal tissues including bone, cartilage, tendon, blood vessels etc.
Specifically, our research focuses on the following areas:I. Fundamental: Understand how microenvironmental cues regulate stem cell fate. We are interested in understanding the effects of interactive signaling on stem cell in 3D and results from such studies would help predict stem cell phenotype in vivo and direct rational design of stem cell niche for tissue engineering applications.II. Technological: Develop controlled delivery system to direct stem cell differentiation in situ. Our goal is to develop a controlled release system for sustained delivery of synergistic genetic signals to direct stem cells differentiation in situ.III. Translational: Stem cells for targeting and delivery of therapeutic factors. We are interested in engineering stem cells for targeting and delivery of therapeutic factors to restore normal vascularization and promote tissue regeneration. Findings from such study would have great translational potential that may benefit patients in the future.