The Plastic Surgery Foundation
Log In Donate Now

Grants We Funded

Grant applicants for the 2023 cycle requested a total of nearly $4 million dollars. The PSF Study Section Subcommittees of Basic & Translational Research and Clinical Research evaluated nearly 140 grant applications on the following topics:

The PSF awarded research grants totaling over $1 million dollars to support nearly 30 plastic surgery research proposals.

ASPS/PSF leadership is committed to continuing to provide high levels of investigator-initiated research support to ensure that plastic surgeons have the needed research resources to be pioneers and innovators in advancing the practice of medicine.

Research Abstracts

Search The PSF database to have easy access to full-text grant abstracts from past PSF-funded research projects 2003 to present. All abstracts are the work of the Principal Investigators and were retrieved from their PSF grant applications. Several different filters may be applied to locate abstracts specific to a particular focus area or PSF funding mechanism.

Activation of the Resident Skeletal Stem Cell for Articular Cartilage Repair

Principal Investigator
Matthew Murphy MB BCh BAO(Hons) MRCSI PhD


Stanford University

Funding Mechanism
National Endowment for Plastic Surgery Grant

Focus Area
Tissue Engineering, Hand or Upper Extremity

Long-term objectives
“Bone-marrow-stimulating” procedures such as Microfracturing (MF) have been used for the last 20 years to ameliorate the healing response of degenerative cartilage in osteoarthritic joints. Hyaline cartilage lining joints has a low propensity for regeneration. MF is believed to encourage stem cells from the bone marrow to form new fibrocartilage. Our long-term objective is to understand the direct effect of MF on Skeletal Stem Cell (SCC) population and how best to direct the fate of the “activated” SCC towards chondrogensis.
Specific Aim 1: To examine the effect of Microfracture of articular cartilage on the activation of native SCC population. Marecic et al, from our lab have identified both resting and activated states of the SCC. Methods: We will perform MF on the articular surface of the left distal femur of skeletally mature, 9week old male mice. To control for the effects of MF, a “sham procedure” on the right distal femur will be performed. After 1, 2 and 4 weeks post-op we will euthanize the mice and assess the populations of SCC at MF and control distal femurs by Fluorescence Assisted Cell Sorting (FACS). We will assess the clonality of the SSC by using our Rainbow mouse model to mark each cell with a color. Histological composition at the site of MF will be assessed using Movat's Pentachrome Stain. We will assess the ability for the SCC to form colonies and differentiate into cartilage in vitro.
Specific Aim 2: Optimization of the activated SCC niche after Microfracture towards chondrogenesis by using soluble Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Receptor 1 (VEGFR1) Inhibitor with Bone-Morphogenetic-Protein-2 (BMP2). Our lab has previously described de novo cartilage formation by adding BMP2 and VEGFR1 inhibition. Methods: The surgical procedure will be the same as specific aim 1. However, application of BMP2 and local VEGFR1 inhibition will be performed after the femoral articular surface has been Microfractured. Optimal doses will be determined prior to application with in vitro testing. In vitro testing will be done on isolated SCC's after FACS (as in aim 1), which are plated and treated with different concentrations of BMP2 and VEGFR1 inhibitor. Assessment of the optimal dose will be done using Movat's Pentachrome Stain.

I have successfully completed Core Surgical Training at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. This year I have completed CST training in Plastic Surgery at the Mater Misericordiae University Hospital. With an interest in research, I am a Post-doctoral Research Fellow in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Stanford University with Dr Michael T Longaker. Education: 2000-2007 Methodist College Belfast 2007-2013 School of Medicine and Medical Science, University College Dublin 2013-2016 Royal College of Surgeons Ireland 2016- Present Stanford University, California, USA. Qualifications: 2011,2013 United States Medical Licencing Examinations Step 1 and Step 2CK. 2013 MB BCh BAO (Hons) University College Dublin 2015 MRCSI Royal College of Surgeons Ireland Prizes: 2007 UCD Entrance Award 2010 Awarded the SSRA Medal in Research at CRID UCD 2011 Health Research Board “Oral Competition Finalist”, Dublin Castle. 2012 Recipient of inaugural: “UCD-Harvard Summer Studentship” with Prof Anderson at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, USA. 2012 Recipient of inaugural: “Scholarship in Foetal Medicine” with Prof Yves Ville at University of Descartes, Paris V, France. Grants: 2010 Awarded HRB Research Grant