Ear Cartilage Tissue Engineering & Reshaping

Motivation

Thousands of children are born with deformed or missing external ears, or auricles. In addition, damage can occur to the external ear because of traumatic injury or removal of cancerous tissue. Currently, treatment is limited to plastic implants or reconstruction using autologous rib cartilage, which often result in suboptimal aesthetic results. A reconstruction technique capable of reproducing the complex morphology and mechanical properties of the auricle is needed.

Current Research

  • Tissue engineering of full-scale human auricle [Collaborations: Spector Lab (Weill Cornell)]
  • Electromechanical reshaping of elastic and nasal septum cartilage [Collaborations: Aerin Medical, Inc.]
  • Utilization of mesenchymal stem cells as clinical cell source for auricular cartilage engineering [Collaborations: Spector Lab (Weill Cornell)]
  • Application of low oxygen tension (hypoxia) to promote auricular cartilage generation

Lab Members

Collaborations

Aerin Medical, Inc. – Sunyvale, CA

Spector Lab – Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, NY

 

cohen-fig1-revisedTissue engineered ear implant, (left) pre- and (right) post-implantation.