Blanka Sharma, Ph.D.

Blanka Sharma
Blanka Sharma, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Primary Faculty
Topics: 
Nanomedicine, stem cells, biomaterials, tissue engineering, and targeted drug/gene delivery
Address: 
1275 Center Drive, Biomedical Sciences Building J387, Gainesville, FL 32611
Office Phone: 
(352) 273-9329
Office Fax: 
(352) 273-9221
Education: 
B.A. Sc, Chemical Engineering, University of Waterloo, 1999
Ph.D., Biomedical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University, 2005
Postdoctoral Fellowship, Biomedical Engineering, Cleveland Clinic

Research Summary:

Dr. Sharma’s research is focused on understanding the fundamental interactions between stem cells and diseased/injured tissues, and developing biomaterials to better control stem cell behavior in the body. This includes engineering of nanoparticle-based targeted drug/gene delivery systems and tissue engineering scaffolds to direct the therapeutic function of stem cells. Ultimately, our goal is to translate this research into better ways to treat traumatic injuries, cancer, and degenerative diseases.

Honor and Awards:

Selected as "20 under 40" outstanding young faculty by the American Society for Engineering Education 
Invited Mentee, U.S. Bone and Joint Initiative Young Investigator Program
Invited Participant, National Academies Kecks Future Initiatives (NAKFI) Conference on Collective Behavior   
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada Postgraduate Fellow
First Place Award for Outstanding Research at the Annual Meeting for the International Society for Advanced Biomaterials and Biomechanics  
Medtronic Scholar
First prize in Biotechnology Young Entrepreneur’s Scheme (Business Plan Competition)
  • Outstanding Faculty Member, UF Graduate Student Council, 2016
  • Invited Mentee, U.S. Bone and Joint Initiative Young Investigator Program, 2015
  •  Featured as "20 under 40" outstanding young faculty by the American Society for Engineering Education, 2014
  • Invited Participant, National Academies Kecks Future Initiatives (NAKFI) Conference on Collective Behavior, 2014  
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada Postgraduate Fellow, 2002-2004

Select Publications:

Google Scholar Citations Link

Sharma B, Peetla C, Adjei I, Labhasetwar V, "Selective biophysical interactions of engineered nanoparticles with cancer cell lipids improves tumor targeting and gene therapy," Cancer Letters, 2013 Jul 1;334(2):228-36.

Sharma B, Fermanian S, Gibson M, Unterman S, Cascio B, Coburn J, Hui AY, Marcus N, Gold GE, Elisseeff JH, "Human cartilage repair with a photoreactive adhesive-hydrogel composite," Science Translational Medicine, 2013 Jan 9;5(167):167ra6.

Sharma B, Ma W, Panyam J, Adjec I, Dimetrijevic S, Labhasetwar V, "Nanoparticle-mediated p53 Gene Delivery for Tumor Inhibition," Drug Delivery and Translational Research, 2011 Feb; 1(1):43-52

Sharma B, Williams CG, Kim TK, Malik A, Sun DD, Leong KW, Elisseeff JH, "Designing Zonal Organization into Tissue Engineered Cartilage," Tissue Engineering, 2007 Feb;13(2):405-14.

Sharma B, Williams CG, Khan MK, Hanson P, Elisseeff JH, "In vivo chodrogenesis of mesenchymal stem cells in a photopolymerized hydrogel," Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 2007 Jan;119(1):112-20.