Xiaojun (Lance) Lian

Stem Cell Derived Human Heart Tissue Model

There is an urgent need to develop effective treatments for cardiovascular disease (CVD), a leading cause of death globally.  To date, murine myocardial infarction (MI) models have typically been used for human CVD modeling due to accessibility.  However, due to biological and physiological disparities between human and murine hearts, this may not be a good model for human CVD. 

Here, we propose a paradigm-shifting technique using human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) derived, centimeter-sized, fully vascularized, 3D human heart tissue to study human CVD.  In our prior work, we have demonstrated it is possible to transplant iPSC derived heart progenitors under a murine kidney capsule to form a fully vascularized human heart tissue. 

In this proposal, we will further our research by using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to noninvasively assess hPSC derived heart tissue growth and development in vivo.  We will also establish a novel cryoinjury-induced human MI model using a liquid N2-cooled platinum cryoprobe to create injury. This project is expected to generate a vascularized human heart tissue for human MI modeling for the first time in the literature.



The Department of Biomedical Engineering administers the undergraduate major in biomedical engineering, and is a part of the university-wide Intercollege Graduate Degree Program, offering both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Bioengineering. Our work combines traditional engineering principles with medicine and technology for the betterment of human health and society. 

Department of Biomedical Engineering

122 Chemical and Biomedical Engineering Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-4400

Phone: 814-863-6614