Joana Almeida, PhD student at Stem Cell Bioengineering Lab (Health & Pharma Division, iBET) in collaboration with the Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria de Aragon (Universidad de Zaragoza), received the “Silver Poster Prize” at the 2020 Winter School of the European Society for Artificial Organs.
The awarded poster, entitled “Generation of mature hiPSC derived hepatocytes: a nature-inspired protocol” illustrate part of Joana’s work on the production of functional hPSC-derived hepatocytes for application in cell therapies and tissue engineering.
This innovative project opens new paradigm shifts into the stem cell research field connecting it, for the first time, with the human microbiome. Combining the biotechnology power of gut microbiome and iBET’s expertise on stem cell bioprocessing, Joana produced high yields of human iPSC-derived hepatocytes with improved maturation features.
The muldisciplinary methodologies applied in this work have not been used yet in organ bioengineering making this research project a critical step towards effective transplantation of bioengineered livers.
The 2020 Winter School of the European Society for Artificial Organs was held in Wittenberg, Germany, from February 26-29. Winter Schools follow the idea of contributing to the education and training of Master and PhD students as well as Post-Docs and this year’s theme was Materials, Surfaces & Cells: Science & Technology for Bio Artificial Organs and Tissue Engineering.