William York

Major/Minor: Biomedical Engineering; Pre-Health and Research Option

Year: 4th Year

Lab Name and Department: Botchwey Lab (GT BME)

Project Title: Increasing Exosome Production by Mesenchymal Stem Cells in Bacterial Sphingomyelinase-Conjugated PEG-MAL Hydrogels 

Is your lab work remote, in-person, or hybrid? Hybrid

How did you join your lab? I emailed Dr. Botchwey in my first semester after consulting the Undergraduate Research Ambassadors. He then directed me to his graduate student, Lauren Hymel, who I then met with in person and have worked with ever since. 

Please describe your project:

Exosomes and extracellular vesicles (EVs) are becoming increasingly popular as mechanisms of increasing tissue regeneration. However, there is currently no established method for the production of exosomes or EVs. The aim of this project is to create a novel production method of exosomes for in vivo use to increase their regenerative and therapeutic effects. This will be done by stimulation of Mesenchymal Stem Cells (MSCs) with Bacterial Sphingomyelinase (bSMase) encapsulated in hydrogels.

Anything else you would like to say? 

I really encourage every student at Tech to try undergraduate research. The experience is very high quality and serves the same purpose as internship experience. It provides very real world experience and can open a lot of doors and I think a lot of undergraduate students don’t realize this.