Todd C. McDevitt, PhD, has been awarded the 2010 Young Investigator Award from the Society of Biomaterials. The Young Investigator Award recognizes an individual each year who has demonstrated outstanding achievements and leadership in the field of biomaterials research. Dr. McDevitt will receive the award at the 2010 Annual Meeting to be held in Seattle, WA, next April where he will also be provided the opportunity to address the whole society.
This marks the fourth time in the last seven years that a Georgia Tech faculty member has received the SFB Young Investigator award. Niren Murthy (BME) received the award in 2008, Julia Babensee (BME) in 2005 and Andrés García (ME) in 2004.
The McDevitt Laboratory for the Engineering of Stem Cell Technologies is focused on the development and application of engineering principles to translate the potential of stem cells into viable regenerative therapies and in vitro diagnostics. Biomaterials-based approaches are used to engineer the microenvironment of stem cells in order to improve the efficiency and homogeneity of directed stem cell differentiation strategies. In addition, the McDevitt laboratory’s research focuses on development of novel regenerative molecular therapies from natural biomaterials produced by stem cells. The combination of directed stem cell differentiation and development of stem cell-derived biomaterials is expected to yield fresh insights into stem cell biology, facilitate new regenerative therapies, and create novel cell diagnostic platforms. The McDevitt laboratory research is supported by funding from the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, American Heart Association, and the Georgia Research Alliance, among others.
In addition to the being named the 2010 Society for Biomaterials Young Investigator, McDevitt was appointed as a Petit Faculty Fellow in the Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience in September 2009 and named the Director of the new Stem Cell Engineering Center at Georgia Tech, which is scheduled to officially launch in 2010. The establishment of the first center of its kind in the United States will bring together expertise from different engineering disciplines to address key technical challenges that currently limit the translation of stem cells and to innovate new technologies that will enhance basic stem cell research. The center will include Georgia Tech faculty from the College of Engineering, College of Sciences, and Ivan Allen College, in addition to collaborative partnerships with stem cell researchers at the University of Georgia, Emory University and other partnering institutions throughout the state of Georgia.
Since August of 2004, McDevitt has been an Assistant Professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology / Emory University. McDevitt graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering (BSE) from Duke University in 1997 with a double major in Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Washington in Bioengineering in 2001 working in the laboratory of Patrick Stayton, Ph.D., on protein engineering, micropatterning and tissue engineering. From 2002-04, McDevitt conducted post-doctoral research in Chuck Murry's lab in the Department of Pathology at the University of Washington where he focused on mechanisms of stem cell growth and differentiation for myocardial repair.