People

Dr Cullen

Principal Investigator

D. Kacy Cullen, Ph.D.

dkacy@mail.med.upenn.edu

Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology (2005)

M.S., Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology (2002)

B.S., Mechanical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology (2000)

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Doctoral Candidate, Bioengineering

Laura Struzyna, B.S.E.

Predoctoral Fellowship, National Science Foundation

lstruz@mail.med.upenn.edu

B.S.E., Biomedical Engineering, Duke University (2011)

Project: Tissue Engineered Biohybrid Neuroprosthetic Interfaces, Micro-Tissue Engineered Neural Networks to Restore Brain Circuitry, Neurophysiological Assessment of Nervous System Repair

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Doctoral Candidate, Bioengineering

Kritika Katiyar, B.S.

kritikak@mail.med.upenn.edu

B.S., Biomedical Engineering, Drexel University (2012)

Project: Tissue Engineered Living Scaffolds for Neuroregeneration, Molecular Mechanisms of Axon-Mediated Axon Regeneration, 3-D Neural Cell Culture Techniques

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Doctoral Candidate, Bioengineering

Dayo Adewole, B.S.E.

Predoctoral Fellowship, National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF-GRFP)

oadewole@seas.upenn.edu

B.S.E., Bioengineering, University of Pennsylvania (2015)
M.S.E., Robotics, University of Pennsylvania (2015)

Project: The Application of Micro-Tissue Engineered Neural Networks as Living Electrodes for Sensorimotor Information

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Doctoral Candidate, Neuroscience

Carolyn Keating, B.A.

ckea@mail.med.upenn.edu

B.A., Neuroscience, Colgate University (2012)

Project: Acute Permeability & Synucleinopathy in TBI and 3D Neural Cell Culture

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Doctoral Candidate, Bioengineering

Kathryn Wofford, M.S.

Graduate STEM Fellow in K-12 Education

kate.wofford@drexel.edu

M.S., Biomedical Engineering, Drexel University (2015) B.A., Biophysics and Psychology with Honors, Austin College (2012)

Project: Modulating neuroinflammation after traumatic brain injury

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Research Specialist

Kevin Browne, B.A.

kbrowne@mail.med.upenn.edu

Project: Apoptosis and plasmalemmal permeability after non-impact head trauma and blast injury, in Vivo Efficacy Testing of Tissue Engineered Nerve Grafts for Peripheral Nerve Injury, Micro-Tissue Engineered Neural Networks to Restore Brain Circuitry

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Research Specialist

Justin Burrell, M.S.

burrellj@mail.med.upenn.edu

M.S., Neuroscience, Tulane University (2013)

B.S., Psychology, Tulane University (2012)

Project: In Vivo Efficacy Testing of Tissue Engineered Nerve Grafts for Peripheral Nerve Injury

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Research Specialist

Dan Brown, B.S.

dbrow@mail.med.upenn.edu

B.S. Cellular and Molecular Biology, University of Michigan (2014)

Project: In Vivo Efficacy Testing of Tissue Engineered Nerve Grafts for Peripheral Nerve Injury, Chronic Neurodegenerative and Neurophysiological Sequela in TBI

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Neurosurgical Resident

Dmitriy Petrov, M.D.

dmitriy.petrov@uphs.upenn.edu

M.D., Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

B.A., Biological Sciences, Rutgers University

Project: Micro-Tissue Engineered Neural Networks to Restore Brain Circuitry

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Medical Student

Sanford Roberts, B. A.

Sanford.Roberts@uphs.upenn.edu

B.A. Human Biology, Stanford University (2013)

Project: Evaluation of Polyethylene Glycol as an agent of rapid axonal fusion following nerve transection

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Undergraduate Students

   
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Carla Winter

cawinter@seas.upenn.edu

Major: Bioengineering (2016)

Project: Tissue Engineered Living Scaffolds for Neuroregeneration

 
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Kate Panzer

kapanzer@seas.upenn.edu

Major: Molecular Biology (2018)

Project: Micro-Tissue Engineered Neural Networks to Restore Brain Circuitry

 
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Joseph Maggiore

jmagg@sas.upenn.edu

Major: Bioengineering (2019)

Project: In Vivo Efficacy Testing of Tissue Engineered Nerve Grafts for Peripheral Nerve Injury

 
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Tina Lulla

tlulla@sas.upenn.edu

Major: Biological Basis of Behavior (2017)

Project: Micro-Tissue Engineered Neural Networks to Restore Brain Circuitry

 

Alumni

Jimmy Harris, Postdoctoral Fellow
Project: Chronic Neurodegenerative and Neurophysiological Sequela in TBI & Micro-Tissue Engineered Neural Networks to Restore Brain Circuitry

Carla Hernandez, Undergraduate Student
Project: Histological Techniques to Assess Neurotrauma Pathology and Repair Strategies

Ryan Zahalka, Undergraduate Student
Project: Molecular Mechanisms of Axon-Mediated Axon Regeneration, Environmental Control for Bench-Top Mechano-Bioreactor

Ellie Boyle, Undergraduate Student
Project: Tissue Engineering Strategies for Nerve Regeneration

Anthony Parisi, Undergraduate Student
Project: Quantitative Neuropathological Analyses of Rodent and Porcine Tissue Following Traumatic Brain Injury

Joseph Morand, B.S., Research Specialist
Project: In Vivo Efficacy Testing of Tissue Engineered Nerve Grafts for Peripheral Nerve Injury

Emory Kuo, M.S., Predoctoral Fellow
Project: Tissue Engineering for Neuroregeneration, Chronic Neurodegenerative and Neurophysiological Sequela in TBI

Constance Mietus, B.A., Research Specialist
Project: Neural Cell Biophysical Responses in Blast-Induced Traumatic Brain Injury

Joe Frasca, Ph.D., Post-Doctoral Fellow
Project: Chronic neurodegenerative and neurophysiological sequela of closed-head TBI

John A. Wolf, Ph.D., Post-Doctoral Fellow, University of Pennsylvania
Project: Functional Reorganization of Limbic Circuitry After TBI in Swine, Biohybridized Neural Tissue                                                                                         Engineered Constructs for Electrical Interface with Peripheral Nerve

Matthew Weingard, Medical Student, Tulane
Project: Tissue Engineering with Primary Cortical Neurons

Scott Yerganian, Bioengineering, University of Pennsylvania
Project: Mechanisms of Axon-Mediated Axon Regeneration

Janid Kiely, Biophysics, University of Pennsylvania
Project: Biomechanics of Concussion: Pathobiological Implications of Acute Cellular Damage

Arshneel Kochar, Medical Student, CWRU  
Project: Tissue Engineering Micro-Conduits for Targeted Axonal Tract Reconstruction 

Billy Lane, Pre-Med, Notre Dame
Project: Mechanisms of Axonal Degeneration in a Swine Model of Closed-Head TBI

Jonathan Yu, Biology, Haverford College
Project: Tissue Engineering Micro-Conduits for Targeted Axonal Tract Reconstruction

Contact Information

D. Kacy Cullen, Ph.D
105E Hayden Hall, 3320 Smith Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104
dkacy@mail.med.upenn.edu

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News and Events

  • Dr. Cullen had the honor of being selected as one of "3 People to Watch in Neuroscience in 2016" by STAT News (Health, Medicine, and Biotech publication): https://www.statnews.com/2015/12/23/three-to-watch-brain-science/.
  • Congratulations to Laura Struzyna, a Bioengineering Doctoral Candidate in the Cullen Lab, who won second place in the Perelman School of Medicine 2016 "Art in Science" Competition. The winning image is shown here.
  • Penn and the Journal of Neural Engineering put out a press release for our most recent manuscript describing the Cullen Lab's novel micro-tissue engineered neural networks to restore brain circuitry. Link: http://www.uphs.upenn.edu/news/News_Releases/2016/01/cullen/
  • Carla Winter, and undergraduate researcher in the Cullen Lab for the past 3 years, was selected as a George J. Mitchell Scholar (one of only 12 in the U.S.): http://www.upenn.edu/pennnews/news/penn-students-phillip-cohen-and-carla-winter-named-george-j-mitchell-scholarsThis is very prestigious and well-deserved honor. Way to go Carla!
  • Dr. Cullen had the honor of giving a TED-style talk at Penn’s Annual Neuroscience Public Lecture Series on Neuroengineering: Where Biology Meets Technology. Dr. Cullen discussed the lab’s pioneering work on "Restoring Nervous System Structure and Function With Tissue Engineered 'Living Scaffolds'” (YouTube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cl98Eb36lD4).
  • The Cullen Lab and collaborators Dr. John Wolf, Dr. Misha Serruya, Dr. Brain Litt, Dr. Reuben Kraft and Dr. Isaac Chen were awarded a 3-year, $2 million dollar cooperative agreement (U01) from the NIH to further pioneer "Biological 'Living Electrodes' Using Tissue Engineered Axonal Tracts to Probe and Modulate the CNS".
  • The Cullen Lab received a 2-year grant from the U.S. Dept. of Defense to advance "Novel Tissue-Engineered Nerve Grafts for Repair of Currently Untreatable Peripheral Nerve Injury".
  • Bioengineering Ph.D. Candidate, Kritika Katiyar, was selected for a prestigious NRSA F31 Graduate Research Fellowship through the National Institutes of Health based on her proposal for "Molecular Mediators of Axon-Facilitated Axon Regeneration."
  • Dayo Adewole, a Bioengineering Ph.D. student in the Cullen Lab, was awarded a 3-year Graduate Research Fellowship through the National Science Foundation to develop next-generation neuroprosthetic interfaces. Way to go Dayo!
  • The Cullen Lab and collaborators Dr. John Duda, Dr. Isaac Chen, and Dr. John Wolf were awarded a 2-year grant from the Michael J. Fox Foundation for the project "Restoring the Nigrostriatal Pathway with Living Micro-Tissue Engineered Axonal Tracts".

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