Tissue Engineering (TE) and Regenerative Medicine (RM) combine a patient’s own cells with biodegradable scaffolds and growth factors. These therapies may offer considerable advantages over current surgical interventions used to repair or regenerate damaged tissues following trauma or disease.
The CReaTE group (Christchurch Regenerative Medicine and Tissue Engineering Group), consists of a multidisciplinary research team led by Professor Tim Woodfield, and is working at the interface of cell-biology, biomaterials science and engineering.
Using advanced 3D scaffolds and in-vitro culture techniques, combined with adult human stem cells, our group is attempting to identify the complex cellular environments controlling tissue growth in 3D. We are also researching their application in translating cell-based therapies to the clinic.
Visit our Partnerships page for more about our partnerships and collaborations.
Tissue engineering and regenerative medicine
- Articular cartilage repair from clinically-relevant human cell sources
- Novel methods to enhance mesenchymal stem cell differentiation and tissue quality
- In vitro 3D culture models for mimicking native tissue organisation in vivo
- CT imaging of cartilage and engineered tissues
- Guided cell growth for neural / spinal cord regeneration
Advanced scaffold design and bio-manufacturing
- Solid free-form fabrication of porous scaffolds
- 3D plotting and tissue assembly
- 3D extracellular matrix (ECM) hydrogel models to control cell function
- Pore architecture optimisation and modelling
Orthopaedic medical devices
- Novel metal alloys for bone interfacing implants
- Medical device design
- Total joint replacement and clinical outcomes (NZ National Joint Registry)
The team, led from University of Otago Christchurch campus, consists of mechanical engineers, clinicians, process engineers, mathematicians and surgeons.
Regenerative medicine research lead
Professor Tim Woodfield (Orthopaedic Surgery and Musculoskeletal Medicine, Christchurch)
- Professor Anthony Butler (Radiology, Christchurch)
Postdoctoral researchers and Research Assistants
- Dr Khoon Lim (CReaTE, Senior Research Fellow)
- Dr Gabriella Lindberg (CReaTE, Research Fellow)
- Dr Steven Cui (Research Fellow)
- Dr Caroline Murphy (Postdoctoral Fellow)
- Dr Cesar Alcala (Postdoctoral Fellow)
A large number of postgraduate students have worked alongside our researchers to achieve their qualifications.
Visit our Regenerative Medicine students page
A third of the New Zealand population will be aged over 60 by 2051. This growth, combined with an elderly population living longer and more active lives, means an epidemic of degenerative joint disease is fast approaching. Dr Tim Woodfield, of the Christchurch Regenerative Medicine and Tissue Engineering (CReaTE) Group, is working on a way to address this epidemic.
Printing cartilage, He Kitenga Horizons (University of Otago research publication)
Radio interviews with Professor Tim Woodfield
- 3D Bioprinting Body Parts 2014 (RadioNZ website)
- The New Zealand team working on cutting edge tissue engineering 2014 (RadioNZ website)
Alcala-Orozco, C. R., Mutreja, I., Cui, X., Hooper, G. J., Lim, K. S., & Woodfield, T. B. F. (2022). Hybrid biofabrication of 3D osteoconductive constructs comprising Mg-based nanocomposites and cell-laden bioinks for bone repair. Bone, 154, 116198. doi: 10.1016/j.bone.2021.116198
Lindberg, G. C. J., Cui, X., Durham, M., Veenendaal, L., Schon, B. S., Hooper, G. J., Lim, K. S., & Woodfield, T. B. F. (2021). Probing multicellular tissue fusion of cocultured spheroids: A 3D-bioassembly model. Advanced Science. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/advs.202103320
Aldrich, E. D., Cui, X., Murphy, C., Lim, K. S., Hooper, G. J., McIlwraith, C. W., & Woodfield, T. B. F. (2021). Allogeneic mesenchymal stromal cells for cartilage regeneration: A review of in vitro evaluation, clinical experience, and translational opportunities. Stem Cells Translational Medicine. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/sctm.20-0552
Woodfield, T. B. F., Moroni, L., & Miller, J. S. (2021). Biophysics of biofabrication. APL Bioengineering, 5(3), 030402. doi: 10.1063/5.0057459
Man, K., Mekhileri, N., Lim, K. S., Jiang, L.-H., Woodfield, T. B. F., & Yang, X. B. (2021). MI192 induced epigenetic reprogramming enhances the therapeutic efficacy of human bone marrows stromal cells for bone regeneration. Bone, 153, 116138. doi: 10.1016/j.bone.2021.116138