The Rolfe Lab
My research interests lie in understanding how biological systems develop for the correct physiological success of an organism, and how we can apply this information gained from developing tissues to design strategies for the repair and regeneration of biological systems. Much of my work has explored the interplay between foetal movements and the development of the musculoskeletal system. I have investigated how mechanical stimulation influences the development of the limb including the rudiments and the joints, the developing spine and developing tendons. I am interested in examining the plasticity of the developing musculoskeletal system, investigating how periods of induced mobility following paralysis might lead to improved outcomes for the development of the skeleton, and thus may improve regimes in which reduce foetal movement occurs in a clinical setting.
Current research involves my expertise in mechanoregulation and applying it to identify the structural changes and biological mechanisms that drive normal embryonic tendon development. The aim of this highly innovative approach is to use this knowledge to enhance the maturation of tissue-engineered tendon constructs via nanoparticle gene delivery.
My interests also extend to other developing systems and understanding these systems for the design of strategies for repair or regenerative strategies.