About the project of Andrea
My research focuses on the design of novel bioactive constructs that might be employed to stimulate the repair of cartilage defects. Specifically, I will evaluate the capacity of nanocarriers to selectively deliver chondro-regenerative agents to damaged cartilage, possibly attracting endogenous stem cells and stimulating cartilage reconstruction. This will require (i) the identification of specific chemotactic and anabolic factors, (ii) the use of nanocarriers and hydrogels that may efficiently deliver these bioactive agents, and (iii) the validation of antibodies and other molecular tools to specifically target the damaged tissue. The experimental work will require the set-up of different in vitro and in vivo experimental models, to simulate the microenvironment of damaged or inflamed cartilage.