Makes biomaterial scaffolds: micro-environments that enhance tissue engineering and cancer research.
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Assistant Professor

Materials Science and Engineering


He is Also:
Director, UCF Biomaterials for Tissue Engineering and Cancer Research Laboratory

“I hope our research leads to tissue engineering being a common treatment in hospitals to reduce the need for tissue grafts and organ transplants.”

Dr. Florczyk and his team develop 3D biomaterial scaffolds made from chitosan (a type of fiber taken from the shells of crustaceans) and other natural polymers. The scaffolds are used to study the interactions between cells and materials, and for tissue engineering and cancer research. They culture stem cells or cancer cells on the scaffolds and then study the biological response. The team collaborates with clinicians, biologists, material scientists, mechanical engineers and computer scientists.

Societal Impact
With an overall goal to improve human health, Dr. Florczyk’s work focuses on three main areas: (1) cell-material interaction research to design scaffolds that direct cell function; (2) tumor microenvironment research to develop ways to screen several drugs against a patient’s tumor cells to select the best drug for treatment; and (3) tissue engineering research to reduce the need for tissue grafts and organ transplants.

Graduate Students
Advising 1 master’s student and 2 doctoral students

Courses Taught:
EMA 5584 Biomaterials; EMA 5104 Intermediate Structures and Properties of Materials; ENG 3365 Structures and Properties of Materials

Students Say:
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B.S. Ceramic Engineering, Alfred University
M.S. Biomedical Materials Engineering Science, University of Washington
Ph.D. Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington
National Research Council Postdoctoral Fellow, National Institute of Standards and Technology

Biomaterials for Tissue Engineering and Cancer Research Laboratory
UCF’s Lake Nona campus

Lab Equipment and Capabilities
Biomaterials scaffold production and characterization using a Thinky mixer, mechanical tester, viscometer, lyophilizer, and FTIR spectroscopy.

Cell culture and characterization using biosafety cabinet, incubators, mircoscopes, Cytation 5 microscope and plate reader, and cryostorage.

Current Projects
Current projects are focused on producing biomaterial scaffolds with different mechanical properties to assess the influence of scaffold properties on breast cancer and prostate cancer cell response. We are also investigating the influence of biomaterial scaffold mechanical properties on mesenchymal stem cell differentiation.

Discoveries/Publication Highlights
20 journal articles and 1 book chapter published. 452 citations