• Miniature Railroad reopens Nov. 15.
    Closed at 4 pm on Sept. 30 for the Steelers Game.

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Rangos Giant Cinema
Rangos Giant Cinema
21+ Nights
21+ Nights

If a Starfish Can Grow a New Arm, Why Can't I?

Presented in partnership with:

The exhibit is funded by a Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) from the National Center for Research Resources, a component of the National Institutes of Health.

Tissue Engineering in Action

Some of the leading researchers in the field have contributed to this exhibition. Hear what they have to say about their work today!

Click on a doctor to see a video of his or her work.

  • Anthony J. Atala, MD
    Director, Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine
    Chair of the Department of Urology at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine

Dr. Atala is an internationally recognized expert in tissue engineering. His ground-breaking research has made great strides in the effort to treat, and ultimately cure, damaged or diseased organs. Using cells from the patients' own bodies, he has created urethra tubes through which urine is excreted from the body, blood vessels, bladders, wombs, muscle, and cartilage.

  • Eric Lagasse, PhD
    Director of the Cancer Stem Cell Center at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine, a program of the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC

Dr. Lagasse's cutting-edge research looks at the link between cancer and regenerative medicine. Akin to finding a needle in a haystack, one area of his current research is focused on the identification of cancer stem cells to treat liver and prostrate cancers.

  • Kacey G. Marra, PhD
    Co-Director of the Adipose Stem Cell Center at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine, a program of the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC

Dr. Marra's research focuses on using adipose-derived stem cells (stem cells from fat!) for tissue engineering applications such as cartilage, fat, and bone regeneration following traumatic injury. Another area of her work focuses on "long gap" nerve repair, another area that is very important in traumatic injury for wounded servicemen and women, as well as civilians.

  • Stephen Francis Badylak, DVM, PhD, MD
    Deputy Director of the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine
    Director of the Center for Pre-Clinical Tissue Engineering at the McGowan Institute

Regenerative medicine expert Dr. Badylak shocked the medical world when two of his patients re-grew severed fingertips in just six weeks. The major focus of Dr. Badylak's work is on the use of mammalian-derived extracellular matrix (ECM) for remodeling and regeneration of many different tissues and organs, including tracheal, cardiovascular, liver, lower urinary tract, limb, digit, and many more. Another critical area focuses on developmental biology and its role in regenerative medicine.

  • Joon Sup Lee, MD
    Director of the Cardiovascular Institute at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Associate Chief in the Division of Cardiology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

Dr. Lee is an interventional cardiologist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and is the leader of a clinical trial to study if a patient's own stem cells can treat a form of severe coronary artery disease.

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