939 Sweetwater Drive
Gainesville, FL 32611-6250
Cellular Contributions to Tissue Mechanics: Experimental Models of the Biomechanical Microenvironment
Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
Research in the Simmons Mechanobiology Lab works to understand the feedback loop between cell-level processes and tissue-level mechanics. We have developed a complementary suite of tools to control cellular behavior and probe the resulting mechanics of engineered “microtissues” for insights into disease and regeneration. Here, I will detail our experimental model of pancreatic cancer, highlight our emerging models of tissue regeneration, and summarize my contributions to engineering education and outreach.
Chelsey S. Simmons, Ph.D., joined the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at the University of Florida in Fall 2013, following a visiting research position at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich. Dr. Simmons received her B.S. cum laude in Engineering Sciences from Harvard University and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in Education from Stanford University. Her research lab investigates the relationship between cell biology and tissue mechanics, and their projects are funded by the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, and American Heart Association. Dr. Simmons has received numerous fellowships and awards, including ASEE-SE’s New Faculty Research Award (2018), BMES-CMBE’s Rising Star Award (2017), and ASME’s New Faces Award (2015). She teaches undergraduate Mechanics of Materials, graduate BioMEMS, and professional development courses. In addition to her engineering research and teaching, Dr. Simmons is the PI of a $600k Research Experiences for Teachers Site that has reached over 150 teachers and 3000 students in Alachua County and beyond.