Assistant Research Professor, Surgery

I am an Assistant Research Professor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. I was previously a Postdoctoral Scholar in Dr. Geoffrey C. Gurtner’s laboratory at Stanford University School of Medicine, Department of Surgery, and I previously earned a PhD in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Virginia and a BS in Bioengineering at the University of California, Berkeley. I am highly interested in using my biomedical research and engineering skills to help develop and translate technology to the patient bedside and clinic. I studied and developed therapies to combat scar formation during wound healing or fibrous capsule formation during foreign body reaction (FBR) against biomedical implants. I have studied several translational preclinical animal models of scar healing after both open wound healing and after split thickness skin grafting. These studies have been published in high impact journals such as Nature Communications and Science Translational Medicine. At the University of Arizona, I am co-directing the research lab with Dr. Gurtner, in which we are continuing all of our previous research from Stanford here in Arizona.

Professor, Medicine - (Research Scholar Track), Research Scientist, Professor, BIO5 Institute

Our lab has a new treatment for heart failure. We have a biodegradable graft seeded with adult human cells that we put on the surface of the heart. The potential is to regenerate new heart muscle

Research Assistant Professor, Surgery
I am generating human embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells kidney and liver organoids. Further, I am investigating in vivo maturation and functional properties of organoids after implantation in rodents. I am also involved in rodent kidney and liver bio-scaffolds cellularization with stem cells derived progenitors, differentiation, and characterization of their physiological properties.
Department Head, Surgery, Professor, Surgery, Professor, Biomedical Engineering, Member of the General Faculty, Member of the Graduate Faculty
A general and plastic surgeon, Dr. Gurtner was previously the Johnson and Johnson Professor of Surgery and Bioengineering (by courtesy) and Materials Science (by courtesy) at Stanford University. Dr. Gurtner is the author of over 300 peer-reviewed publications and is an Editor for two major textbooks in the field: Grabb & Smith’s Plastic Surgery and Plastic Surgery. Dr. Gurtner was awarded the James Barrett Brown Award in both 2009 and 2010 and has been named “researcher of the year” by the ASPS, AAPS and numerous other professional organizations. Dr. Gurtner runs an NIH and DoD funded laboratory examining how physical stimuli (mechanical and chemical) alter the human response to injury. This has led to the development of new technologies for which Dr. Gurtner has received 30 issued patents and over 100 patent applications. Dr. Gurtner has founded several venture backed start-up companies, including Neodyne Biosciences ( and Arresto Biosciences, acquired by Gilead (NASDAQ:GILD) in 2011. Dr. Gurtner was also a founding partner at Tautona Group (, an early stage life science fund that has created novel biomedical technologies that have been sold to industry leading companies, such as Allergan (NYSE:AGN), Novadaq (NASDAQ:NVDQ), and Acelity/KCI (San Antonio, TX).
Postdoctoral Research Associate I
Professor, Surgery, Professor, Medical Imaging - (Research Scholar Track), Professor, Physiological Sciences - GIDP, Professor, Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences, Professor, BIO5 Institute
Professor, Surgery, Professor, Neurosurgery, Professor, Pediatrics, Member of the General Faculty, Member of the Graduate Faculty
Graduate of Barnard College, NYU School of Medicine, Internal Medicine Residency, UNC and Bellevue Hospital, Internal Medicine. Faculty: Washington University SOM and University of Arizona, Department of Surgery, 1969-present (Professor); Director, Student Research Programs, UA College of Medicine, 1982-present. Past-President (1985-1987) and current Secretary-General (1987-) International Society of Lymphology, Chief Editor, Lymphology. Mentored hundreds of students supported by NIH multi-institute training grants since 1982 to develop diverse research workforce pipelines. “Women in Medical Academia” in mid-1970's and service reflect a long-standing commitment to leadership training, equity, diversity, and disadvantaged populations. Educational activities have an overlying theme of “medical ignorance” – “what we know we don’t know, don’t know we don’t know, and think we know but don’t,” aiming to nurture “curiosity”.