Hometown: Lawrence, Kansas, United States
Graduation date: Spring 2020
MORE | Fall 2020
Investigation of a polyether urethane-based polymer for promoting bone tissue healing
Interest in the field of tissue engineering is rapidly increasing due to its role in providing a platform for regenerative medicine and tissue repair solutions. In particular, there is a clinical need to create a solution for healing major bone breaks and defects in patients using tissue engineering methods. Polyurethanes (PUs) that are ether-based have been shown to have favorable biocompatibility and are generally nondegradable. The goal of this research is to study a polyether urethane-based polymer and its potential to be used in treatments for large bone breaks.
Mentor: Brent Vernon
Sponsored project | Fall 2020
Michelle Loui was awarded a W. L. Gore & Associates sponsorship for her Fall 2020 MORE project. W. L. Gore & Associates is a uniquely creative, product leadership enterprise that has served a variety of global markets for 60 years, and provides innovative solutions that its associates stand behind. Gore established funds to support undergraduate students in the Fulton Undergraduate Research Initiative program and values student-driven research and developing relationships with students in the program.
“Michelle has been a key participant in two different research projects focused on the development of novel polymeric biomaterials. In the first, she learned key synthesis and characterization techniques as she assisted in developing an injectable polymer material for the treatment of cerebral aneurysms. As the research scientist in the lab was out of the lab on maternity leave, Michelle picked up the reins to drive the project through key in vivo experiments evaluating the application in an aneurysm model. With this experience, she has picked up a key role in the development of a degradable polyurethane. In this project, she has taken on mentoring roles for other more junior undergraduate students in helping them plan and conduct synthesis and characterization following a full factorial experimental design. Through all of this work, Michelle has been key to minimizing the negative effects of the COVID shut down on the research in the lab.”
— Associate Professor Brent Vernon