2024 Program

Biomaterials Day promises to bring together specialists from universities, industry, and research institutes to increase our understanding of the latest advances in biomaterials used in healthcare and medical applications.

We are excited to discover the upcoming advances in biomaterials as an interdisciplinary group of students, researchers, and professionals meets to educate our community.

2024 Guest speakers:

Daniel Abebayehu, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Dan Abebayehu, PhD, studies fibrosis and how different types of fibroblasts could promote tissue regeneration instead of scar formation. Dr. Abebayehu’s research has been supported by an NIH Mosaic Pathway to Independence Award (K99/R00) which provides promising postdoctoral scientists support to transition from mentored research to independent principal investigators. His research combines two advanced tools, a hydrogel system developed at UVA, and single-cell RNA sequencing, to determine how fibrosis gets started and if it can be prevented or even reversed.

In addition to his research, Dan is committed to supporting and encouraging underrepresented minorities in engineering and STEM fields. He’s an active member of BME’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee.

To learn more about Dr. Abedayehu, visit:

Daniel Abebayehu | University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science

Jessica Larsen, Ph.D.

Carol and John ‘63 Cromer Endowed Associate Professor
Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Dr. Jessica Larsen is the Carol and John ’63 Cromer Endowed Associate Professor at Clemson University, where she contributes her expertise in both the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Bioengineering departments. Dr. Larsen’s academic journey includes a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Auburn University and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Virginia.

Leading the Larsen Lab at the Center for Nanotherapeutic Strategies in the Central Nervous System, Dr. Larsen and her team stand at the forefront of integrating materials science with neural biology. Their groundbreaking work aims to devise innovative strategies for treating and diagnosing central and peripheral nervous diseases. The lab’s unique approach marries polymer science, biomaterials, nanotechnology, and drug delivery, focusing on developing polymersomes to bypass the blood-brain barrier effectively. This versatile methodology allows the Larsen Lab to address a wide array of cell types and diseases, encompassing both fundamental and practical research endeavors.

Dr. Larsen’s research is currently supported by prestigious funding from the National Science Foundation (EBMS), the National Institutes of Health (NINDS, NIGMS), and Clemson University, highlighting the significant impact and promise of her work.

To learn more about Dr. Larsen, Visit: The Larsen Lab.