Feihu Zhao joined the group as a Ph.D. student in December 2012 after receiving his M.Sc. degree (Machine Automation) from Tampere University of Technology, Finland. During his M.Sc. study, Feihu Zhao designed and optimised a biomedical device, which was used for mechanical stimulation of cells (i.e. bone cells, cardiomyocytes), and quantified the mechanical environment in the device by computational approaches. Previously, Feihu obtained his B.Eng. degree (Mechanical Engineering) from Huaihai Institute of Technology, China. His current PhD research involves predicting the mechanical environment that drives bone regeneration within tissue engineering scaffolds, and mechanical characterisation of stem cells during osteogenic differentiation and is funded through the European Research Council (ERC) grant, BONEMECHBIO, to Dr. Laoise McNamara.
The primary aim of this study is to predict the mechanical environment that will drive bone regeneration, and optimise the mechanical stimulation for bone tissue engineering experiments. In this study, Feihu investigated the influence of scaffold geometry and applied loading on the resultant mechanical stimulation within TE scaffolds. He develops novel computational models (i.e. multiscale fluid-structure interaction) to quantify the mechanical stimulation imparting on bone cells within scaffolds. His research seeks to optimise mechanical stimulation based on a mechano-regulation model, which predicts the bone formation within tissue engineering scaffold. As a part of this research, Feihu also conducts the mechanical characterisation of adipose stem cells (ASCs) during osteogenic differentiation by atomic force microscopy (AFM) approach.