All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Palaniappan Sethu

Advisory Committee Members

Timmy Lee

Timmy Lee

Margaret Lui

Jennifer Pollack

Mary Kathryn Sewell-Loftin

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) School of Engineering


The current pathway for drug discovery is associated with costs of $2.55 billion and between 10-15 years of development for a single drug to reach the market. The challenges in predicting drug toxicities and efficacies are attributed to inherent species differences in drug-metabolizing enzyme activities and cell-type-specific sensitivities to toxicants. Organs-on-a-chip are an emerging technology in disease modeling and screening therapeutics to address discrepancies between animal models and human clinical trials. They utilize tissue engineering, fluid mechanics, and biomaterials to replicate in vivo architectures and functions of complex organs and tissues. Herein, the effect of pressure and stretch on bioengineered cardiac tissue and a spectrum fluidic shear stress on the renal proximal tubule epithelium are evaluated to elucidate how these stimuli play an important role in maintaining cellular phenotype and homeostasis. Additionally, human renal proximal tubule cells were cultured under physiological shear and pressure with known nephrotoxic or non-nephrotoxic compounds. Lastly, a more complex and novel bioengineered platform was developed of a 3D PT tubule and associated vascular networks. The organ-on-a-chips developed in this study will provide a technology that has broad applications in basic and translational research to model disease states, study interactions with other tissue chips, and accurately predict drug toxicity.

Included in

Engineering Commons



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