Benjamin S. Harrison, PhD
Benjamin S. Harrison, Ph.D., Assistant Professor
Dr. Benjamin Harrison was born and raised in Pensacola, Florida. He received his B.S. Degree in chemistry from the University of West Florida in 1998. Following that, he attended graduate school at the University of Florida and obtained a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry in 2003.
SYNOPSIS OF AREA OF INTEREST: Materials both small molecules, polymeric, and nanomaterials that can provide enchanced functionality to biomaterials including mass transport and oxygen delivery and image contrast.
DETAILED AREA OF INTEREST: Active biomaterials are paramount in supporting, growing and delivering cells, developing functional tissues, and engineering whole organs. This presents exciting, new and more sophisticated challenges to science and medicine. The need for rapid advancement is obvious.
Significant advances in tissue engineering will be made using ideas rooted and developed over many years in other scientific disciplines, such as aerospace and environmental engineering, and rapidly developing areas such as nanotechnology. Three such areas, we are examining are:
- Enhancing mass transport and oxygen delivery to cells. Engineered tissue scaffolds for cell seeding are typically limited in size to approximately millimeters in thickness due to oxygen and nutrient diffusion. We are exploring methods to increase the amount of available oxygen for cells to extend their survival until supporting vasculature is in place.
- Improving non-invasive imaging techniques through novel nanosized contrast agents.
- Developing electroactive materials for probing cellular activity and directing cell growth.