Kimberly G. Harmon, MD (Family Medicine and Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine)
Interest in non-surgical orthobiologic treatments for musculoskeletal conditions such as platelet rich plasma, bone marrow aspirate and microfragmented fat (“stem cells”) is exceedingly high. Although these treatments are being offered at clinics around the country the science behind these procedures is lagging.  Our group aims to 1) Offer an evidence-based assessment of new treatments to patients interested in these procedures  2) Provide these procedures safely to patients who have made the decision to proceed and 3) Systematically study and report clinical outcomes of these procedures. Our hope is to partner with basic scientist and researchers to better understand and improve clinical options for non-surgical orthobiologic treatments for musculoskeletal conditions like osteoarthritis and chronic tendinosis.

Ronald Kwon (Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine)
Our lab is focused on skeletal disease and regeneration. We are understanding the genetic basis of osteoporosis, and identifying new therapeutic targets to combat this massive health burden. We are also understanding why certain organisms such as fish are able to regenerate bony appendages following amputation, and how to mount this response in the digits and limbs of mammals.

The Musculoskeletal Systems Biology Lab comprises engineers, basic scientists, and clinicians. Our focus is on taking bold, innovative approaches to reverse aging-induced bone fragility, and to help realize human regenerative potential.”

Alec Smith, PhD (Physiology & Biophysics)
My lab’s research is focused on understanding the mechanistic pathways that underpin muscle and nervous tissue development in health and disease. To achieve this, we are developing human stem cell-derived models of neuromuscular diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). By analyzing the behavior of these cells, we aim to better define how the causal mutation leads to the development and progression of neurodegenerative disease. Ultimately, identification of pathways critical to disease progression will provide new targets for therapeutic intervention, leading to the development of new treatments for patients suffering from these debilitating and life-threatening conditions.