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Virtual FIRM 2020

Advances in Regenerative Medicine from the comfort of your own home

18th August  -

8th September,

Every Tuesday,

3 pm BST, hosted on Zoom

Keynote speakers


Prof. Garry Duffy

NUI Galway, Centre for Research in Medical Devices

Garry Duffy is a Professor in Anatomy and Regenerative Therapies within the School of Medicine at the National University of Ireland Galway. He has a keen interest in developing minimally-invasive surgical devices to enable the future translation of biomaterial based cell and drug therapy products.

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Prof. Michael Raghunath

ZHAW Zurich University of Applied Sciences

Michael Raghunath is the Head of Cell Biology and Tissue Engineering at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences in Wadenswil. He has developed macromolecular crowding, and, subsequently, a novel field in Tissue Engineering to build cell-specific and lineage-directing microenvironments.


Dr. James Kusena


James Kusena is the Head of Bioprocessing at MicrofluidX, a microfluidics-based cell and gene therapy bioprocessing platform. James has a background in human pluripotent stem cell culture and differentiation from Loughborough University. His work focuses on the research and development of automated and closed system bioprocessing devices. 


Prof. Patricia Murray

University of Liverpool

Patricia Murray is a Professor of Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine in the Institute of Translational Medicine at University of Liverpool. She is interested in monitoring and improving the safety and efficiency of regenerative medicine therapies. In particular, her research focuses on developing novel imaging probes and techniques for monitoring novel cell therapies.

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Dr Stephen Patrick

University College London

Stephen is a Research Associate at the Centre for Advanced Biomedical Imaging (CABI) at University College London. He is interested in the development and application of novel in vivo imaging techniques for tracking cell-based therapies, biomaterials, and nanoparticles. Stephen’s non-invasive imaging work aims to better understand the behaviour of stem cells and other therapies in vivo, while working toward their clinical translation.

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Prof. Liesbet Geris

University of Liège

Liesbet Geris is a Collen-Francqui Research Professor in Biomechanics and Computational Tissue Engineering at the university of Liège and KU Leuven in Belgium.  Her research focuses on the multi-scale and multi-physics modelling of biological processes.


Dr. Blanka Sharma

University of Florida

Blanka Sharma is an Associate Professor and J. Crayton Pruitt Family Term Fellow at University of Florida. Her research aims to direct drug and cell delivery through manipulation of cell-material interactions for regenerative medicine and cancer applications . In particular, Blanka is focusing on understanding and modulating inflammatory mechanisms to achieve efficient site-specific delivery. 


Dr. Thomas Heathman

Ori Biotech LTD

Thomas Heathman is the Vice President of Commercial Operations for North America for Ori Biotech Ltd and previously served as the Business Leader for North America for Hitachi Chemical Advanced Therapeutics Solutions. His work has been focused on the overall growth and competitive advantage of manufacturing and technology development. 


Martin Farley

Green Lab Associates

Martin Farley is the director of Green Lab Associates who help to improve the efficiency and sustainability of laboratories.  Martin received the prestigious Green Gown award in 2015 in recognition of his work in implementing environmentally-friendly practices in UK universities. 



The talks are held at 3pm BST (10am EST)


Emerging Technologies

Prof Liesbet Geris

Dr Stephen Patrick


Manufacture and Sustainability

Dr James Kusena

Martin Farley

Dr Thomas Heathman



Prof Michael Raghunath

Dr Blanka Sharma


Clinical Translation and Ethical Practices

Prof Patricia Murray

Prof Garry Duffy

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