University of Houston Cullen College of Engineering

Cato T. Laurencin
February 16, 2018
Cato T. Laurencin, Albert and Wilda Van Dusen Distinguished Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering; Director, The Raymond and Beverly Sackler Center for Biomedical, Biological, Physical and Engineering Sciences and The Institute for Regenerative Engineering; Chief Executive Officer, Connecticut Institute for Clinical and Translational Science, The University of Connecticut
Regenerative Engineering: Convergence To Address Musculoskeletal Grand Challenges

We define Regenerative Engineering as a Convergence of Advanced Materials Science, Stem Cell Science, Physics, Developmental Biology, and Clinical Translation. Stem Cells play an important role. Work in the area of musculoskeletal tissue regeneration has focused on a number of paradigms. Polymer and polymer-ceramic systems can be utilized for the regeneration of bone. Direct induction can be controlled through material characteristics. Through the use of inducerons, small molecules fostering induction, the design of regeneration-inducing materials can be realized. We believe the medicinal use of stem cells will be of critical importance in the design of next generation systems answering grand challenges to musculoskeletal regeneration.


Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D. is the Albert and Wilda Van Dusen Distinguished Endowed Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Laurencin is a University Professor at UCONN. He is the 8th to be designated in UCONN’s over 130 year history. Dr. Laurencin is also Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, and Professor of Biomedical Engineering at the school.

A practicing shoulder and knee surgeon, Dr. Laurencin has been named to America’s Top Doctors for over a decade. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, a Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, and a Fellow of the American Surgical Association. Named one of the 100 Engineers of the Modern Era by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Dr. Laurencin is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society, the Biomedical Engineering Society, the Materials Research Society, and an International Fellow in Biomaterials Science and Engineering, as well as a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. He has been awarded the Percy Julian Medal by the National Organization of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChe). Dr. Laurencin is a member of the editorial boards of 25 journals, and is the Editor-in-Chief of Regenerative Engineering and Translational Medicine.

Dr. Laurencin’s research expertise is in Biomaterials, Nanotechnology, Drug Delivery, Stem Cell Science and a new field he has pioneered, Regenerative Engineering. Dr. Laurencin has been funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the past 25 years. He is the recipient of two Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation Awards from NSF. He has received the NIH Director’s Pioneer Award for his transformative work in Regenerative Engineering.

Dr. Laurencin has been honored by the White House on three occasions. He received the Presidential Faculty Fellow Award from President Bill Clinton for his work bridging engineering and medicine. He received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Engineering, Science and Math Mentoring from President Barack Obama. More recently, he received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation from President Barack Obama.

Dr. Laurencin has two awards named in his honor: The Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D. Travel Fellowship Award given by the Society for Biomaterials, and The Cato T. Laurencin Lifetime Research Achievement Award given by the W. Montague Cobb Cobb/National Medical Association Health Institute.

Dr. Laurencin is an elected member of both the National Academy of Medicine, and the National Academy of Engineering. Internationally, he is an elected Fellow (Associate) of the African Academy of Sciences, an elected Fellow (Foreign) of the India National Academy of Engineering and the India National Academy of Sciences and a he is a Fellow of The World Academy of Sciences. Dr. Laurencin is an Academician and Member (Foreign) of the Chinese Academy of Engineering.

Dr. Laurencin earned his B.S.E. in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University and his M.D., Magna Cum Laude, from the Harvard Medical School.  He earned his Ph.D. in Biochemical Engineering/Biotechnology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he was named a Hugh Hampton Young Fellow.

Time: 12:00 pm
Location: SEC 102

About Elizabeth D. Rockwell

Elizabeth D. Rockwell

A fourth generation Houstonian, Mrs. Rockwell was an Executive Director, Private Client Division of CIBC Oppenheimer Corp. She was widely recognized as an expert in retirement, estate, investment, and tax planning. She was an early proponent of the Keogh and IRA plans, for which she has been nationally recognized.

In 1991, she qualified to be a member of the Million Dollar Round Table as well as the Texas Leaders Round Table. Since 1990 she had authored a monthly column for the Houston Chronicle.

Mrs. Rockwell served as President of the UH College of Business Administration Foundation Board, as a member of the Dean’s Advisory Board, and was an Executive Professor for the college. She also served as a member of the advisory board of the Health Law and Policy Institute and as a Trustee of the University of Houston System’s Foundation, as well as a member of the UH System’s Planned Giving Council.

Mrs. Rockwell served on the Board of Governors for the Houston Forum, and as a Board member of the American Red Cross, the Greater Houston Women’s Foundation, the University of Houston Alumni Organization, and the Greater Houston Preservation Alliance. She was a member of the River Oaks Business Women’s Exchange Club, the National Tax Sheltered Annuity Association, the Texas Association of College Teachers, and the Houston Association of Life Underwriters.

Among her numerous honors, she has received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the University of Houston, the Distinguished Alumna Award from the Houston Alumni Organization and from the UH College of Business Administration. Throughout the years she has been recognized for her many achievements by the Education Foundation of Harris County, the Houston Community College System’s Television Station Advisory Council, and the Houston Mayor’s READ Commission.

The Houston Alumni Center is home to the Elizabeth D. Rockwell President’s Suite. In September 1997, the Elizabeth D. Rockwell Career Services Center was opened in the UH College of Business Administration. She endowed the Chair for the Dean of the M.D. Anderson Library.

Mrs. Rockwell was listed in the Who’s Who in the South and Southwest; Who’s Who in finance and Industry; Who’s Who of American Women; and Who’s Who in the World.