The Christman Lab focuses on developing novel biomaterials for tissue repair and regeneration. The lab has a strong translational focus with the main goal of developing minimally invasive therapies.  Projects are highly interdisciplinary and involve collaborations with basic scientists, engineers, and physicians. 

Injectable Biomaterials for Cardiac Repair and Regeneration

We are interested in developing and understanding injectable materials for cardiac tissue engineering and drug delivery applications. Cardiac tissue engineering offers new possibilities for treating cardiovascular disease, including myocardial infarction, a leading cause of death in the US and the world. With the ultimate goal of clinical translation, we are developing a variety of hydrogels and nanoparticle systems to treat acute and chronic myocardial infarction, heart failure, and congenital heart defects.  We focus on mainly acellular approaches that are amenable to minimally invasive delivery as well as allow for an off-the-shelf product that can translate to the clinic faster. The first technology developed in the lab, our myocardial matrix hydrogel, is already being tested in myocardial infarction patients, and we intend to continue to develop and test injectable biomaterials for unmet clinical needs in cardiac patients.

Injectable  Biomaterials for Skeletal Muscle Repair and Regeneration

We are also interested in the use of injectable biomaterials for treating damaged skeletal muscle. Given our strong focus on cardiovascular disease, we are particularly interested in developing and translating these materials for treating ischemic skeletal muscle in peripheral artery disease, which is when narrowed or occluded arteries restrict blood flow to the limbs. We have also branched outside of cardiovascular conditions into new skeletal muscle applications related to women’s health and orthopedics. In particular, we are committed to the development of injectable biomaterials for treating pelvic floor disorders.  Millions of women suffer from pelvic floor disorders, including pelvic organ prolapse and urinary and fecal incontinence, yet clinical options remain poor.  Injectable biomaterials offer new  possibilities for improving these patients' lives.


Our research would not be possible without funding from the following sources: