Welcome to the Bioinspired Materials Lab

We are building innovative biomaterials to address significant challenges in biology and medicine.

Chemists, biologists, materials scientists, and engineers collaborate to create new materials we refer to as “bioinspired materials”. Our materials are “bioinspired” because they mimic some of the fascinating ways that nature builds materials – from sea shells to human organs.

We work closely with biologists to make fundamental scientific discoveries. We also partner with clinicians to create medical devices that can regenerate diseased or damaged tissues.

Our goal is to achieve high impact by pursuing groundbreaking discoveries, translating discoveries into new medical treatments, and training the next generation of leaders in regenerative medicine.


January 2023

Chanul Kim; senior UW Biomedical Engineering student, attended the National Collegiate Research Conference at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA. At the conference he presented a poster with his research focus titled:

  • Characterization of decellularized plant leaf biomaterials for tissue engineering

November 2022

Iris Baurceanu; senior UW Biomedical Engineering student, recently presented her research at the the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minoritized Scientists (ABRCMS) in Anaheim, CA. She won a poster presentation award for her poster titled:

  • Investigating the effect of mineral coated iron oxide microparticles on macrophage polarization towards an anti-tumoral M1-like phenotype

September 2022

Murphy Lab Scientists; Jae Sung Lee, PhD, and Gianluca Fontana, PhD, recently attended the Military Health System Research Symposium (MHSRS) in Kissimee, Florida, where they presented their latest research. Dr Lee presented two posters titled;

  • Delivery of therapeutic mRNA using mineral-coated microparticles improves motor function after spinal cord injury
  • Attenuation of VEGF in platelet-rich plasma (PRP) enhances the repair of osteoarthritic cartilage

Dr Fontana gave a presentation titled;

  • Design of therapeutic autologous clots for regeneration of musculoskeletal injuries

April 2022

Graduate students; Hannah Martin, Margot Amitrano, Junsu Yun and Josh Choe recently attended the Society for Biomaterials annual meeting in Baltimore, where they presented their latest research. Titles of the their posters and talks were;

  • Cytokine supplementation for T-lymphocyte expansion using magnetic mineral-coated microparticles (H. Martin)
  • Biofunctionalized plant leaf-derived scaffold for skeletal muscle development (J. Yun)
  • Synthetic hydrogels support robust and reproducible cardiomyocyte differentiation (M. Amitrano)
  • Mineral coated microparticles for stabilization of therapeutic messenger RNA (J. Choe)

Lab Spotlight

September 2022

Congratulations to Liz Torr who has accepted a new position as Research Specialist in Professor Ahna Skop’s Lab in the Genetics Department at UW-Madison.

February 2022

Joydeb Majumder, PhD, has joined our lab as a Research Associate in the Orthopedics and Rehabilitation Dept. Welcome Joydeb!