The Plastic Surgery Foundation
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Grants We Funded

Grant Applicants for 2020 requested more than $4.1 million. The PSF Study Section Subcommittees of Basic and Translational Research and Clinical Research Evaluated 111 applications on the following topics:

The PSF awarded Research Grants totaling more than $860,000 to support 24 plastic surgery research proposals.

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons/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.

Cell guidance for induction of osteogenesis and chondrogenesis

Principal Investigator
Harvey Chim MD


University Hospitals of Cleveland (DBA University Hospitals Case Medical Center)

Funding Mechanism
Pilot Research Grant

Focus Area
Technology Based, Tissue Engineering

An ideal cell source has not been described for bone and cartilage tissue engineering, with clinical translation limited by problems such as donor site morbidity inherent in harvest of such cell sources as end-organ cells and MSCs; as well as unpredictable quality of tissue formed in the cell-scaffold construct. Use of embryonic stem cells (ESCs), while promising, is fraught with ethical and moral issues. A potential alternative is offered by a technique which we have termed "cell guidance"1. This technique obviates the requirement for a donor cell source, by inducing homing of desired cells into cytokine-impregnated scaffolds to induce tissue formation. The concept of "cell guidance" relies on the SDF-1- CXCR4 axis, which is a pivotal regulator of trafficking of various stem cells in the human body4. It has been shown previously that mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) expressing CXCR4 migrate in response to a SDF-1 stimulus5. In a previous study1, we were able to demonstrate site-directed homing of cells into a poly-e-caprolactone (PCL) scaffold implanted in a subcutaneous murine model, with resultant tissue ingrowth and angiogenesis.. In this study, we hypothesize that the use of SDF-1 as a cytokine to induce homing of stem cells, in combination with a differentiation cytokine, delivered through a cytokine microdelivery system, will be sufficient to induce osteogenesis and chondrogenesis in the absence of any implanted cells, within a PGA mesh scaffold. We will perform animal studies designed to test this hypothesis, and analyse for cell proliferation and differentiation using quantitative assays, immunohistochemistry and histology. This proposed study serves as both a "proof of principle" experiment, building on previous published data1, and also attempts to build a foundation for future head-to-head comparative studies against established cell sources in bone and cartilage tissue engineering, such as end-organ cells and mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs).

Dr. Chim received his medical degree from the National University of Singapore, and subsequently obtained membership in the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, Scotland. He is currently a resident in the integrated Plastic Surgery program at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH. Throughout his training he has received numerous awards and recognition. His research interests lie in the application of stem cells and tissue engineering towards regenerative surgery, with more than 20 peer reviewed publications to date. Dr Chim is interested in the application of guidance techniques to induce cell homing for tissue regeneration, as well as investigating alternative cell sources with minimal donor site morbidity for use in musculoskeletal tissue engineering.