Benjamin L. Beckstead

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Various studies have identified a critical role for Notch signaling in cardiovascular development. In this and other systems, Notch receptors and ligands are expressed in regions that undergo epithelial-to-mesenchymal transformation. However, there is no direct evidence that Notch activation can induce mesenchymal transdifferentiation. In this study we show(More)
Infection of implanted medical devices by Gram-positive organisms such as Staphylococcus ssp. is a serious concern in the biomaterial community. In this research the application of low frequency ultrasound to enhance the activity of vancomycin against implanted Staphylococcus epidermidis biofilms was examined. Polyethylene disks covered with a biofilm of S.(More)
The ability to regulate stem cell proliferation and differentiation has relevance in numerous medical applications, including medical devices, tissue engineering, and regenerative medicine. To control cellular behavior at the biomaterial or scaffold interface, many studies have employed surface modifications that mimic the extracellular matrix. Strikingly(More)
The oesophagus acellular matrix (EAM) tissue-scaffold has the potential to serve as the foundation for a tissue-engineered oesophagus for repair of ablative defects. Similar to all collagen-based biomaterials, the EAM is subject to enzymatic degradation in vivo. The introduction of exogenous crosslinks to collagen molecules via glutaraldehyde (Glu) is the(More)
A cell-extraction protocol yielding an esophagus acellular matrix (EAM) scaffold for use in tissue engineering of an esophagus, including hypotonic lysis, multiple detergent cell extraction steps, and nucleic acid digestion, was developed in a rat model. Histological techniques, burst pressure studies, in vitro esophageal epithelial cell seeding, and in(More)
The Notch signaling pathway is a promising target for controlling cell fate choices at the biomaterial-tissue interface. Building on our previous work in developing Notch-signaling biomaterials, we evaluated various immobilization schemes for Notch ligands, and their effect on human foreskin keratinocytes. A peptide sequence derived from the Jagged-1(More)
an adjuvant to antimicrobial therapy, targeted at both planktonic and biofilm (sessile) organisms. Our previous work showed that ultrasound (US) effectively enhances the bactericidal activity of certain antibiotics against planktonic cultures (Pitt et al., 1994; Rediske et al., 1999) and in vitro biofilms (Johnson et al., 1998; Qian et al., 1999) and in(More)
As an initial step towards a tissue-engineered esophagus, rat esophageal epithelial cells (REEC) were isolated and characterized for epithelial identity, adhesion protein preference, and in vitro interaction with natural and synthetic scaffolds. The scaffolds consisted of AlloDerm (LifeCell Corporation, Branchburg, NJ), poly(L-lactic acid) (PLLA),(More)
Stable endothelialization of a tissue-engineered heart valve is essential for proper valve function, although adhesive characteristics of the native valve endothelial cell (VEC) have rarely been explored. This research evaluated VEC adhesive qualities and attempted to enhance VEC growth on the biopolymer chitosan, a novel tissue-engineering scaffold(More)