Ena Music

BSc Biology, MSc Biology

PhD student


    Optimization of methods for delaying hypertrophy of MSC-cartilage microtissues

    About me

    I'm a biomedical researcher and PhD student, working at the beautiful and cutting-edge Translational Research Institute, in the Stem Cell Therapies laboratory under the supervision of Dr. Mike Doran. My project involves creating a cartilage construct using mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs), hydrogels, and growth factors with the end goal of producing a functional cartilage tissue for the repair of cartilage defects. More broadly, I'm interested in using molecular methods to further understand animal biology and to benefit society.

    Previously, I completed a Masters of Science in Biology at the University of Waterloo. I studied the effects of various environmental contaminants on heme oxygenase-1 protein accumulation in Xenopus cells and I published a first-author paper. We found that although low concentrations of heavy metals are typically not enough to trigger the cell stress response, when those same low concentrations are combined with a moderate increase in temperature, cells become stressed. This has interesting implications as these heavy metals are found in polluted bodies of water near industrial areas, and global water temperatures are rising.

    In addition to research, I also enjoy teaching and volunteering as a "science evangelist". Over six years as a teaching assistant/demonstrator and tutor, I've taught 600+ university students in a variety of settings. I have also facilitiated the training of new teaching assistants. In my spare time, I go on visits to local primary schools, previously through Let's Talk Science (Canada) and currently with Wonder of Science (Australia). In early 2016, I was the team leader for the "Our Body" theme of Pint of Science, a three day festival occuring in pubs globally.

    Research fields

    cartilage regeneration, stem cells, tissue engineering