The Peyton Lab: Engineering Migration to the max
We are a lab in Chemical Engineering, and our goal is to find cures to disease through the use of novel engineered models to tissue. We use polymeric biomaterials to create small model tissues, that trick cells into thinking they are actually in the body, and then study how cells move and respond to the physical and chemical properties of their surrounding tissue. Certain diseases of the human body, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, are particularly dangerous because of how cells migrate in the diseased tissue.
We are several women and men, all engineers, and our mission is to learn how a variety of different cell types are able to process information from chemical and physical cues from the surrounding tissue and make decisions about migration. This broader mission is focused onto specific applications toward: cardiovascular disease, where plaque formation in arteries causes smooth muscle cells to migrate and further block blood flow, causing heart attacks and stroke; cancer, cell migration out of the primary tumor is the cause for 9 out of every 10 cancer deaths, and stem cell engineering, where we are trying to create novel scaffolds that will carry stem cells in them to treat wounded soldiers.
Here's us from the summer of 2011, taking a well-deserved break and enjoying the music and scenery of the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood.
Thanks to our funding sources - you support our students and help us make this research happen!
Members of the Peyton lab participate in three outstanding collaborative institutes at UMass-Amherst. Follow the links for more information.