Nikolaj Gadegaard - Smarter Biomaterials

Dr Nikolaj GadegaardProfessor Nikolaj Gadegaard is working at the exciting interdisciplinary interface between Engineering and Life Science with the aim to develop smarter materials for biological applications. He was inspired to join the University and establish a career in this field following the original work at the University by Professor Adam Curtis and the late Professor Chris Wilkinson.

All manmade materials have surface texture or topography as a deliberate or inadvertent result of the manufacturing process, and today it is well accepted that this influences biological systems both in vivo and in vitro. Professor Gadegaard’s goal is to understand how these interfaces can specifically be engineered for a desired application. This aim is made possible through the University’s world-leading clean room facility, the James Watt Nanofabrication Centre. Here Professor Gadegaard takes advantage of the ability to control patterns and shapes on a length scale comparable to proteins. In this quest he has recently been awarded an ERC Consolidator Award to understand the design rules for surface topography and its effect on cells. This provides funding to establish super-resolution microscopy to study the molecular dynamics at the engineered interfaces and correlate this to cellular function.

The nanoscale engineering platform used by professor Gadegaard shares the same processes currently used in the manufacture of optical and semiconductor electronic devices. This provides a direct route to translate the findings to medical products or devices. This activity forms an equally important part of his activity within the School of Engineering.

Professor Gadegaard concludes: “University of Glasgow is a fantastic place to carry out my research fuelled by an inspiring legacy of world changing academics”.

Further information

First published: 25 March 2015