Chris is the William Fairfield Warren Distinguished Professor at Boston University, Director of the Tissue Microfabrication Laboratory, Founding Director of the Biological Design Center at Boston University, and is a Paul G. Allen Distinguished Investigator. He has been an instrumental figure in the development of engineered cellular microenvironments to understand and control how cells build tissues. The goal of Dr. Chen’s research is to identify the underlying mechanisms by which cells interact with materials and each other to build tissues, and to apply this knowledge to the biology and engineering of stem cells, tissue vascularization, connective tissues, and cancer research. He has received numerous honors, including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the Angiogenesis Foundation Fellowship, the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, the Mary Hulman George Award for Biomedical Research, the Herbert W. Dickerman Award For Outstanding Contribution to Science, and the Robert A. Pritzker Award. He serves as an elected fellow of the National Academy of Inventors and of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and is a member of the Faculty of 1000 Biology, Board of Trustees for the Society for BioMEMS and Biomedical Nanotechnology, and Defense Sciences Study Group. Chris is developing new approaches to engineer cells and tissues as effective therapeutics, with a particular focus on tissue vascularization and growth, and co-leads the 3D Organ Engineering Initiative at the Wyss Institute.
Chris received his A.B. in Biochemistry from Harvard, M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from MIT, and Ph.D. in Medical Engineering and Medical Physics from the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology Program. He earned his M.D. from Harvard Medical School. Previously, Chris was Assistant Professor in Biomedical Engineering and in Oncology at Johns Hopkins University, and the Skirkanich Professor of Innovation and Founding Director of the Center for Engineering Cells and Regeneration at the University of Pennsylvania.