Dr Marco Cantini
- Lecturer in Medical Applications of Engineering Materials (Biomedical Engineering)
In 2004 I received my Bachelor and in 2006 my Master degree in Biomedical Engineering from Politecnico di Milano and Politecnico di Torino in Italy, with full marks and honours. I then graduated from the school for young talents Alta Scuola Politecnica in 2007.
Between 2007 and 2010 I pursued a PhD in Biomedical and Biomechanical Engineering through a joint PhD program (Scuola Interpolitecnica) of the three Italian Technical Universities. I then held post-doctoral researcher positions at the Universitat Politècnica de València and at the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia in Spain, focussing my interest on the modulation of cell-protein-material interactions to control cell fate.
In 2013, I moved to the University of Glasgow, where I have been working on material-based strategies to engineer tissue repair and regeneration as a Research Associate in the Microenvironments for Medicine group led by Professor Manuel Salmeron-Sanchez.
My work, based at the Biomedical Engineering Research Division of the University of Glasgow, is carried out within the Centre for the Cellular Microenvironment, a cross-college multidisciplinary initiative of the University, and the Acellular/Smart Materials Hub of the UKRMP.
My current research seeks to engineer microenvironments, based on dynamic biointerfaces and viscoelastic hydrogels, to harvest stem cell response to viscosity and viscoelasticity. Besides facilitating our understanding of the mechanotransductive mechanisms involved in the cell's interpretation of these mechanical cues, this work is instructing the design of advanced smart materials for the regulation of stem cell fate, for example for their chondrogenic differentiation for cartilage repair.
My general research interests include the design of advanced materials that simulate the spatio-temporal cues of the extracellular matrix in both physiological and pathological conditions, for applications in regenerative medicine, drug testing and understanding of disease mechanisms. I'm also interested in protein adsorption at the cell-material interface, surface modification to control cell adhesion and differentiation, and atomic force microscopy and spectroscopy.
Sprott, M. R. , Gallego-Ferrer, G., Dalby, M. J. , Salmeron-Sanchez, M. and Cantini, M. (2019) Functionalisation of PLLA with polymer brushes to trigger the assembly of fibronectin into nanonetworks. Advanced Healthcare Materials, 8(3), 1801469. (doi: 10.1002/adhm.201801469) (PMID:30609243)
Bennett, M., Cantini, M. , Reboud, J. , Cooper, J. M. , Roca-Cusachs, P. and Salmeron-Sanchez, M. (2018) Molecular clutch drives cell response to surface viscosity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 115(6), pp. 1192-1197. (doi: 10.1073/pnas.1710653115) (PMID:29358406)
Ngandu Mpoyi, E., Cantini, M. , Reynolds, P. M. , Gadegaard, N. , Dalby, M. J. and Salmerón-Sánchez, M. (2016) Protein adsorption as a key mediator in the nanotopographical control of cell behavior. ACS Nano, 10(7), pp. 6638-6647. (doi: 10.1021/acsnano.6b01649) (PMID:27391047) (PMCID:PMC4980054)
Llopis-Hernández, V. , Cantini, M. , González-García, C., Cheng, Z. A., Yang, J., Tsimbouri, P. M. , García, A. J., Dalby, M. J. and Salmerón-Sánchez, M. (2016) Material-driven fibronectin assembly for high-efficiency presentation of growth factors. Science Advances, 2(8), e1600188. (doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1600188) (PMID:27574702) (PMCID:PMC5001810)
- Medical Research Council (UK), UKRI Innovation/Rutherford Fund Fellowship, Engineered microenvironments to harvest stem cell response to viscosity for cartilage repair, MR/S005412/1, 2018-2022, £600k
- Ministero dell’Istruzione, dell’Università e della Ricerca (Italy), Doctoral Scolarship, Design of a dynamic culture system for the in vitro mimicry of the bone marrow microenvironment, 2007-2009, €45k
- Matthew Walker (Viscoelastic hydrogels for cartilage tissue engineering)
Supervision of PhD candidates:
- Eonan William Pringle (Dissipative microenvironments to understand cell response to viscosity, first supervisor, expected 2024)
- Haoming Wang (Viscosity in the integrin-growth factor cross-talk, second supervisor, expected 2022)
- Eva Barcelona-Estaje (Engineering surface mobility to control stem cell differentiation, second supervisor, expected 2021)
- Vassilis Papalazarou (Bioengineering microenvironments for pancreatic cancer cell invasion, second supervisor, 2015-2019)
- Mark Sprott (Synergistic microenvironments to control stem cell fate, second supervisor, 2015-2019)
- Mark Bennett (Mobility dependent cellular behaviour on supported lipid bilayers, second supervisor, 2014-2018)
- Elie Ngandu Mpoyi (Engineering biointerfaces to reveal collagen IV disease mechanisms, second supervisor, 2014-2017)
- Frankie Vanterpool (Deconstructing the tumour microenvironment: the role of fibronectin, second supervisor, 2013-2017)
- Eleni Grigoriou (Graded organisation of fibronectin to tune cell behaviour, second supervisor, 2013-2017)
- Fatma Bathawab (Engineering surface mobility to direct stem cell fate, second supervisor, 2013-2017)