Current Lab Members

Research Scientists

  • Solaiman Tarafder, PhD

    Associate Research Scientist

    Dr. Tarafder earned a PhD in materials science and engineering from Washington State University (WSU) with a research focus in biomaterials and tissue engineering. Before that he obtained a BS and MS in chemistry and inorganic chemistry, respectively, from Shahjalal University of Science & Technology, Bangladesh. As a postdoctoral research scientist in the Regenerative Engineering Laboratory at the Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC), he worked to develop a spatiotemporal delivery system for the release of bioactive cues from 3D printed bioscaffolds for the regeneration of multi-tissue interface (bone-to-tendon) and fibrocartilage tissue (meniscus and TMJ disc) from endogenous stem/progenitor cells. He is currently developing a bio-inspired bioadhesive/bioglue for seamless healing of injured meniscus. He is also working to develop immunomodulatory biomaterials to modulate immune-response for functional musculoskeletal tissue (such as cartilage, bone and tendon) regeneration under inflammatory conditions. His goal is to advance our understanding of how materials chemistry, composition, spatiotemporal delivery of bioactive cues/pharmacologically active small molecules along with advanced manufacturing and immunoengineering approaches can be leveraged to drive stem/progenitor cell functions for cartilage, bone, and tendon tissues regeneration.

    Solaiman Tarafder, PhD
  • Christopher L. Ricupero, PhD

    Associate Research Scientist

    Dr. Ricupero's received his PhD in Neuroscience and research career focuses on genetic engineering strategies and stem cell disease modeling for neurodevelopmental and craniofacial disorders. He is developing direted cell fate programming approaches through genomic and epigenetic editing. How a stem or progenitor cell differentiates and maintains its identity through the combination of transcription factors and epigenetic regulation has been a central theme to his research. Our goal is to leverage this programmable gene regulation towards innovative regenerative medicine therapies with iPS, neural and mesenchymal stem cells.

    Research Interests:

    Stem Cell Disease Modeling

    Programmable Gene Regulation

    Epigenetic Editing

    CRISPR/Cas9/Cas13

    Neurodevelopmental Disorders

    Craniofacial Disorders

    Regenerative Medicine

    Dr. Christopher Ricupero
  • Ga-Young Park, PhD

    Postdoctoral Research Scientist

    Dr. Park received her PhD in Bio-fibers and Biomaterials Science at Kyungpook National University in South Korea and served as a visiting research scientist at University of Washington at Seattle. Dr. Park has extensive experience in development of bioactive materials providing controlled delivery of growth factors for musculoskeletal regeneration, specifically targeting rotator cuff tendons and periodontal ligaments. Her research at CDCR focuses on tendon regeneration via endogenous stem/progenitor cells and their interplay with immune system.

    Ga-Young Park, PhD
  • Md A. Sarker, PhD

    Postdoctoral Research Scientist

    Dr. Sarker earned a PhD from the University of Saskatchewan, Canada in Biomedical Engineering, with a research focus on peripheral nerve regeneration with a 3D printed scaffold. Previously, he received a MASc in Process Systems Engineering from the University of Regina, Canada and a BSc in Chemical Engineering from BUET, Bangladesh. He is currently developing biocompatible multi-material scaffolds with a 3D bioprinter to facilitate the Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) disc regeneration. He is optimizing printing parameters to allow homogeneous and spatially regulated delivery of small molecules and growth factors that will support TMJ regeneration. His research also includes surface modification of scaffolds to achieve the controlled delivery of bioactive molecules from surfaces.

    Research Interests:

    Peripheral nerve regeneration, 3D bioprinting of tissue scaffolds, Tissue vascularization, Drug testing in organ on a chip model, Bone graft development, Exosome isolation and engineering, Synthesis of nanoparticles and nanodroplets, Nano-medicine, Development of biosensor, and Ultrasound- mediated tissue healing

    Md A. Sarker, PhD

Student Research Fellows

  • Andy Sim, BS

    Research Technician

  • Ashleigh Alex, DDS

    Resident, Orthodontics

  • Hyun Nyun Woo, DDS

    Resident, Periodontics

  • Sharon (Soomin) Park

    DDS Student

  • Julian Bensadoun

    DDS Student

  • Jeffrey T. Felix

    DDS Student

  • Amanda Segel

    DDS Student

  • Ye Jin An

    DDS Student

  • Rishabh Rattan

    DDS Student

  • Rachel Brooke

    DDS Student

  • Alexander Litrel

    DDS Student