Biology Research Associate Professors Jean Welter and Rodrigo Somoza Involved in project “OMEGA: Orchestrating Multifaceted Engineering for Growing Artificial Joints.”

ARPA-H has just announced funding of the project “OMEGA: Orchestrating Multifaceted Engineering for Growing Artificial Joints.” (PI: Ozan Akkus Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering) with the goal of engineering, growing and ultimately commercializing “live” replacement joints to treat Osteoarthritis. At the heart of the OMEGA project lies the “Bioreactor
and Cell” component of this new project and will be working on the massive expansion of cells required, and the design and implementation of bioreactor and sensor systems which will be needed to grow these tissues.

Collaborating closely with Dr. Baskaran from the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Drs. Rodrigo Somoza and Jean Welter from the Department of Biology lead this essential endeavor. Their extensive expertise in cell isolation, expansion, differentiation, and characterization will be pivotal in achieving the project’s ambitious goals. As we embark on this transformative journey, The OMEGA project promises to revolutionize joint replacement therapies, offering hope and improved quality of life for countless individuals suffering from Osteoarthritis. These accomplished researchers continue to make significant contributions to science and medicine, impacting lives through their innovative work.

At Case, OMEGA includes David Miller, (Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences), Tracey Bonfield (Genetics and Genome Sciences), Clare Rimnac, Majid Rashidi and Robert Gao (Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering), Ronald Triolo (Biomedical Engineering), James Voos and Jacob Calcei (Orthopaedics) and Jane Reese Koc (National Center of Regenerative Medicine). Further, the OMEGA team includes Colorado State University, The Ohio State University, Rice University and Washington State University. Other partners include the biotech firm Sapphiros AI Bio, University Hospitals Medical Center of Cleveland, the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, and Massachusetts General Hospital.

Text provided by Dr. Jean Welter.

To learn more about the OMEGA project, take a look at the corresponding article in The Daily.