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Lab Members

Principal Investigator:

Aleksander Skardal, PhD

Dr. Aleks Skardal is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering and member of the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center. His research focuses on using customizable biomaterials and biofabrication techniques to create tissue and tumor model systems, such as organoids and tissue chips, for drug and toxicology testing and to explore biological phenomena such as metastatic tumor growth. Dr. Skardal received his BSc in Biomedical Engineering at Johns Hopkins University and his PhD in Bioengineering at the University of Utah, working with Dr. Glenn Prestwich, focusing on the development of extracellular matrix (ECM)-derived hydrogels for 3D bioprinting. This work yielded several of the very first published papers describing the development of "bioinks" for 3D bioprinting. Dr. Skardal was then a postdoctoral research fellow at the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine (WFIRM) under the mentorship of Dr. Shay Soker. There the group applied ECM biomaterials technologies for applications in stem cell biology, wound healing, organoids for drug screening, and in vitro tumor modeling. As an assistant professor at WFIRM, Dr. Skardal further developed a toolkit of ECM biomaterials as higher quality cell-supportive bioinks for bioprinting, built multi-tissue type multi-organoid body-on-a-chip systems, and created a tumor organoid/tumor-on-a-chip research program that employ human patient-specific tumor biospecimens to biofabricate personalized tumor models for precision oncology applications. These efforts continue at OSU today.

Outside of work, Aleks enjoys surviving life with 3 daughters, an awesome wife, and an old man dog named Milton. Running, mountain biking, gym time, classic rock, and cooking are squeezed in whenever possible.



Hema Sivakumar, MS

Research Associate


Graduate Students:

Thomas Depalma, BSc

PhD Student, Biomedical Engineering


Kylie Nairon, BSc

PhD Student, Biomedical Engineering


Students continuing to be advised and collaborating at the Wake Forest School of Medicine :

Andrea Mazzocchi, BSc

PhD Student, Biomedical Engineering


Steven Forsythe, MS

PhD Student, Cancer Biology


Shiny Rajan, MS

PhD Student, Biomedical Engineering


Casey Clark, BSc

PhD Student, Biomedical Engineering


Former Lab Members

Julio Aleman, BSc

Current: PhD Student, University of Pittsburgh


Hesh Devarasetty, PhD

Current: Postdoctoral Fellow, Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine


Connor Huntwork, BSc

Current: PhD Student, University of Wisconsin