The Bionic Man
Is the bionic person fact or fiction? The answer may be found in UBC ‘s research Laboratories.
Fueled by the exciting progress made in biotechnology and nanomaterials, Tissue Engineering is quickly becoming a method of choice for the development of implants in surgery. It is expected that Tissue Engineering will become a viable option in the healthcare industry in the next decade. In orthopaedic reconstruction, surgeons often replace damaged tissue resulting from trauma, pathological degeneration, or congenital deformity with autogenous grafts. Due to the shortage of human organs and the limitations of conventional reconstructive graft materials, surgeons have looked to the field of Tissue Engineering for synthetic alternatives. The key challenges in Tissue Engineering are the synthesis of new cell adhesion-specific materials and development of fabrication methods to produce reproducible three-dimensional synthetic or natural biodegradable polymer scaffolds with tailored properties. In the Advanced Fibrous Materials Laboratory at UBC nanofibrous scaffolds are being developed as the basic building blocks for repair and regeneration of human tissues and body parts.
Dr. Ko talks about how nanofiber technology may make the bionic person a reality by building a body one part at a time.