Estela Carvalho

Beneficiary of the Short-term Research Internships at the University of Texas at Austin

Role PhD Student
Affiliation Institution Centre of Physics (CF-UM-UP), University of Minho
Host Institution McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering, Cockrell School of Engineering, the University of Texas at Austin
Program Area Nanotechnologies

Short Bio

I am a PhD student at the Centre of Physics (CF-UM-UP, University of Minho and Porto).  My research journey emphasis the use of biomaterials in the scope of biotechnology and health science evolving the handling of eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells. Currently, I am working on the development of novel strategies for improving the interface between titanium-based prosthesis and bone tissue, to induce effective osseointegration and prevent bacterial adhesion.

Work description

During my stay at UT Austin, I intend to develop a conceptually novel approach capable of ensuring rapid osseointegration, thereby laying the groundwork for finding a solution to surgical site infections in patients with prosthetic implants. Using complex materials nanoengineering, the development of a bioactive injectable hydrogel is proposed. Hydrogels are three-dimensional hydrophilic polymer chains with high mechanical strength and the ability to provide nutrient environments suitable for endogenous cell growth. Furthermore, it can control the release of various therapeutic agents in both space and time, such as small- molecule drugs, macromolecular drugs, and cells. In this scope, the proposed system will be designed to mimic extracellular matrix mechanics, architecture, and biochemistry, through the combination with synthetic cells.

Expectactions about the Short-term Research Internship

In fields as materials engineering, human health and manufacturing, UT Austin is at the forefront of innovative research. I hope to learn new methodologies and techniques to apply in my future work through the UT Austin Program research internship, as well as expand my knowledge with experts in the field. And last but not least, I’m hoping to have fun in Austin.

Stay tuned for more updates coming soon!

Adrianne Rosales

Assistant Professor
Cockrell School of Engineering, UT Austin

Brian Belardi

Assistant Professor
Cockrell School of Engineering, UT Austin