Kristi Anseth

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Kristi S. Anseth
Residence U.S.
Nationality United States
Fields Chemical and Biological Engineering
Institutions University of Colorado
Alma mater University of North Dakota-Williston, Purdue University, University of Colorado
Doctoral advisor Chris Bowman
Spouse Chris Bowman
External video
“Bonfils Stanton Foundation 2015 Honoree: Kristi Anseth”
“NAS Research Briefings: Kristi S. Anseth - Biomaterials as Synthetic Extracellular Matrices“

Kristi S. Anseth is the Tisone Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering, an Associate Professor of Surgery, and a Howard Hughes Medical Investigator at the University of Colorado at Boulder.[1][2] Her main research interests are the design of synthetic biomaterials using hydrogels, tissue engineering, and regenerative medicine.

Early life and education[edit]

Kristi Anseth grew up in northwestern North Dakota. She played on both the volleyball and basketball teams at the University of North Dakota-Williston, earning the honor of Academic All-American in her second year.[3]

Kristi Anseth transferred to Purdue University where she began her research career as an undergraduate student in the lab of Nicholas A. Peppas, receiving her Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering in 1992.[2] She obtained her PhD in 1994, working under Christopher Bowman, himself a former graduate student of Nicholas Peppas, at the University of Colorado.[3]


After post-doctoral work with Robert Langer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Thomas Cech, Anseth became an assistant professor at the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder in 1996.[4] She currently leads the Anseth Research Group as the Tisone Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering.[5]

Anseth is working at the intersection of materials science, chemistry and biology,[6] studying natural and synthetic hydrogels and using biomaterials to create an extracellular matrix to support three-dimensional cell enculturation.[7][8]

Anseth is developing photopolymers that will change from soft to hard in response to cues such as ultraviolet light, and then degrade predictably over time.[9] Such materials could be used to for orthopedic repairs, functioning as a replacement for damaged areas of bone and then slowly being replaced by regrowth of natural material as the body heals. Her pioneering approach applies photopolymerization and photodegradation to enable precise control in space and time of hydrogels' structure and composition. This research involves fundamental investigations into the molecular dynamics of processes at the cell-biomaterial interface.[6]

Anseth is also working on the tissue engineering of biomaterials for the replacement of cartilage and heart valves.[7] By combining photopolymers and lab-grown cartilage her lab is creating living replacements for worn-out joints. The problem is more difficult than replacing bone because the cartilage in joints, unlike bone, does not have the ability to regrow.[9][10]

She has published more than 250 papers and filed for at least 18 patents.[11] She has been involved in editorial activities of journals including Biomacromolecules, Journal of Biomedical Materials Research — Part A, Acta Biomaterialia, Progress in Materials Science, and Biotechnology and Bioengineering.[12] As of January 2015 she was elected the Vice President/President-Elect of the Materials Research Society (MRS).[11]


In 1999, Anseth was named to the MIT Technology Review TR100 as one of the top 100 innovators in the world under the age of 35.[9]

Kristi Anseth was the first engineer, male or female, to be selected as a Howard Hughes Medical Investigator.[4] At age 40, she was the youngest member ever to be elected to both the National Academy of Engineering (2009)[13] and the Institute of Medicine (2010).[2] In 2013, she was also elected to the National Academy of Sciences. She shares the distinction of being a member of all three with chemical engineers Cato Laurencin, Robert S. Langer, Nicholas A. Peppas, Frances Arnold, and Rakesh K. Jain. As of 2015, she was also named to the National Academy of Inventors.[14]

Other awards and honors include:


  1. ^ a b "Renowned tissue engineering researcher Kristi Anseth from University of Colorado named 2015 Bayer Distinguished Lecturer at Pitt". Swanson Engineering, PITT. January 22, 2015. Retrieved 25 October 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c "Kristi S. Anseth". Purdue University College of Engineering. 
  3. ^ a b Simpson, Kevin (March 24, 2008). "Brilliant mind, noble cause". The Denver Post. Retrieved 25 October 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c Davidson, Joanne (May 13, 2015). "Dianne Reeves, Adele Phelan and Kristi Anseth receive 2015 Bonfils-Stanton Awards". The Denver Post. Retrieved 25 October 2016. 
  5. ^ "Kristi S. Anseth". Chemical and Biological Engineering, University of Colorado Boulder. 
  6. ^ a b Flanagan, Dave (April 4, 2012). "Kristi S. Anseth to Receive MRS Mid-Career Researcher Award". Materials Views. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  7. ^ a b "Kristi S. Anseth, PhD". Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  8. ^ Tibbitt, Mark W.; Anseth, Kristi S. (1 July 2009). "Hydrogels as extracellular matrix mimics for 3D cell culture". Biotechnology and Bioengineering. 103 (4): 655–663. PMC 2997742Freely accessible. PMID 19472329. doi:10.1002/bit.22361. 
  9. ^ a b c "1999 Young Innovators Under 35: Kristi Anseth, 31". Technology Review. 1999. Retrieved August 15, 2011. 
  10. ^ Kim, Iris L.; Mauck, Robert L.; Burdick, Jason A. (December 2011). "Hydrogel design for cartilage tissue engineering: A case study with hyaluronic acid". Biomaterials. 32 (34): 8771–8782. PMC 3183132Freely accessible. PMID 21903262. doi:10.1016/j.biomaterials.2011.08.073. 
  11. ^ a b "Materials Research Society President-Elect, Kristi S. Anseth, Named 2015 Bayer Distinguished Lecturer at Pitt". Materials Research Society. April 20, 2015. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  12. ^ a b "Dr. Kristi Anseth Wins 2013 James E. Bailey Award Winner". Society for Biological Engineering. August 20, 2013. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  13. ^ "Dr. Kristi S. Anseth". NAE Members. 
  14. ^ "Kristi Anseth named National Academy of Inventors Fellow". Chemical and Biological Engineering University of Colorado Boulder. Retrieved April 29, 2016. 
  15. ^ "2009 MRS Fellows". Materials Research Society. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  16. ^ "Awards and Recognition of Advancements in the Field of Biomaterials". Society For Biomaterials. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  17. ^ "Elizabeth D. Gee Memorial Lectureship Award". University of Colorado. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  18. ^ "Alan T. Waterman Award Recipients, 1976 - present". National Science Foundation. Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  19. ^ "Outstanding Young Investigator Award". Materials Research Society. 

External links[edit]