Bone Tissue Engineering Lab

Headed by Eric Farrell and Andrea Lolli

Bone tissue engineering

Research topic

The use of autologous bone taken from another part of the body of the patient remains the gold standard treatment for the repair of large bone defects.

That is despite the impact on the patient, the damage done to the donor site and the associated costs and risks of two surgical procedures, one to harvest bone and the second to repair the defect.

Our group is focused on finding alternative tissue engineering based approaches to bone defect repair, focusing on cells, biomaterials and growth factors. We collaborate with many research groups both nationally and internationally on this topic, including a strong collaboration with the Technical University of Delft and have several projects running on the topic.

We are mainly focused on two aspects:

1. increasing our understanding of how to modulate endochondral ossification

2. testing combinations of cells, novel molecules and smart biomaterials for their ability to induce and support bone formation 

Image: enhancement of in vivo bone formation by delivery of microspheres loaded with growth factor (BMP2)                        [Fahmy-Garcia et al., Adv Healthc Mater 2018]



Shorouk Fahmy Garcia, Enrique Andres Sastre, Yannick Nossin, Callie Knuth (Alumnus)

Related Projects


NANO-SCORES wants to revolutionize the treatment of knee osteochondral lesions, a particular kind of defect that affects cartilage and the underlying bone tissue. This objective will be achieved by developing…

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Cartilage and bone are inextricably linked during development, pathology and repair. During skeletal development most bones of the body are formed via a cartilage intermediate through the process of endochondral…

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Related Publications

Mesenchymal stem cell-mediated endochondral ossification utilising micropellets and brief chondrogenic priming
Knuth, C. A., Witte-Bouma, J., Ridwan, Y., Wolvius, E. B., and Farrell, E. (2017)
Eur Cell Mater 34, 142-161

Isolating Pediatric Mesenchymal Stem Cells with Enhanced Expansion and Differentiation Capabilities
Knuth, C. A., Kiernan, C. H., Palomares Cabeza, V., Lehmann, J., Witte-Bouma, J., Ten Berge, D., Brama, P. A., Wolvius, E. B., Strabbing, E. M., Koudstaal, M. J., Narcisi, R., and Farrell, E. (2018)
Tissue Eng Part C Methods 24, 313-321

Follistatin Effects in Migration, Vascularization, and Osteogenesis in vitro and Bone Repair in vivo.

Fahmy-Garcia, S., Farrell, E., Witte-Bouma, J., Robbesom-van den Berge, I., Suarez, M., Mumcuoglu, D., Walles, H., Kluijtmans, S., van der Eerden, B. C. J., van Osch, G., van Leeuwen, J., and van Driel, M. (2019)
Frontiers in bioengineering and biotechnology 7, 38

Collagen type X is essential for successful mesenchymal stem cell-mediated cartilage formation and subsequent endochondral ossification

Knuth, C. A., Andres Sastre, E., Fahy, N. B., Witte-Bouma, J., Ridwan, Y., Strabbing, E. M., Koudstaal, M. J., van de Peppel, J., Wolvius, E. B., Narcisi, R., and Farrell, E. (2019)
Eur Cell Mater 38, 106-122

Understanding and Modulating Bone and Cartilage Cell Fate for Regenerative Medicine.

Narcisi, R., and Farrell, E. (2019)
Frontiers in bioengineering and biotechnology 7, 8

Cartilage Oligomeric Matrix Protein-Derived Peptides Secreted by Cartilage Do Not Induce Responses Commonly Observed during Osteoarthritis

Andres Sastre, E., Zaucke, F., Witte-Bouma, J., van Osch, G., and Farrell, E. (2020)
Cartilage, 1947603520961170

Angiogenic Potential of Tissue Engineered Cartilage From Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells Is Modulated by Indian Hedgehog and Serpin E1

Nossin, Y., Farrell, E., Koevoet, W., Somoza, R. A., Caplan, A. I., Brachvogel, B., and van Osch, G. (2020) 
Frontiers in bioengineering and biotechnology 8, 327