Luis Alvarez, Principal Investigator        

Ph.D. Biological Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
S.M. Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
B.S. Chemistry, United States Military Academy, West Point, NY

Luis founded the Regenerative Biology at the National Cancer Institute in 2012. His group focuses on the development of tissue engineering methods to address loss of function resulting from traumatic injury and diseases such as cancer. His research interests are motivated in part by his military experience and a desire to use new findings in regenerative medicine for the benefit of injured Service Members. Luis is also an active duty Army officer and serves within the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command. His previous assignments include the 2nd Infantry Division (South Korea), the 1st Cavalry Division (Ft. Hood, TX and Baghdad, Iraq), and the Natick Soldier Research, Development, and Engineering Center (Natick, MA).

Awards & Fellowships

Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program Career Development Award (2011)
Hertz Foundation Fellow (1997-99, 2006-2009)

​Recent Publications

  • An Engineered Bivalent Neuregulin Protects Against Doxorubicin-Induced Cardiotoxicity with Reduced Pro-Neoplastic Potential. Circulation (2013).


  • Multilayer Thin-film Coatings Capable of Extended Programmable Drug Release: Application to Human Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation. Drug Delivery and Translational Research (2012), 2, 375–383.


  • Engineered Bivalent Ligands to Bias ErbB Receptor-mediated Signaling and Phenotypes. The Journal of Biological Chemistry (2011), 286, 27729–27740.


  • Synergistic Effects of Tethered Growth Factors and Adhesion Ligands on DNA Synthesis and Function of Primary Hepatocytes Cultured on Soft Synthetic Hydrogels. Biomaterials (2010), 31, 4657–71.




George Klarmann, Research Scientist

Post-Doctoral Fellow, HIV Drug Resistance Program, National Cancer Institute-Frederick

Ph.D. Biochemistry, University of Utah

B.S. Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Connecticut

George has extensive experience in biochemistry and cell biology.  His previous work includes studying the biochemical mechanisms of HIV-1 DNA synthesis and reverse transcriptase nucleotide substrate selection as well as the link between epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, basement membrane invasion, and cancer stem cells. In his most recent work George led a research group at a major cell biology company where he focused on product development in the areas of hematopoietic, mesenchymal and adipose-derived stem cell differentiation, and the establishment and applications of 3D air-liquid interface culture systems for primary airway epithelial cells.


Joseph Loverde, Research Scientist

Ph.D. Biomedical Engineering, New Jersey Institute of Technology & Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, 2014

M.S.  Bioinformatics, Northeastern University, 2005

B.S.  Biology, Muhlenberg College, 1999


Joseph has extensive experience in neurobiology and mechano-transduction of cell signaling in neurons. He is heading up the group's work in nerve regeneration at the Center of Molecular Science at the United States Military Academy. His work in stretch-mediated axon growth has been featured in a Jove article describing the process of mechanically induced growth.





Laura Murcin, Research Technologist

M.S. Biometdical Engineering, Rutgers University & University of Medicine and Dentistry, 1998

B.S. Chemical Engineering, University of Colorado, Boulder, 1995


Lara brings many years of experience in biomaterials fabrication and testing. Previously Lara worked at Therics, Inc as a Senior Research Associate in their Tissue Engineering group where she developed expertise in GMP pilot plant manufacturing of biologics.  Lara also worked at the American Red Cross Holland Laboratory and most recently at Madigan Army Medical Center where she served as a principal  investigator on a variety of  clinical research projects.





Meena Sharma, Research Associate

Research Fellow, Laboratory of Sphingolipid and Phospholipid Signaling Frederick National laboratory for Cancer Research

M.S. Biotechnology, Periyar University, Tamilnadu, India

​B.S.  Biotechnology, Kerala University, Kerala, India





Kristen Felt, Visiting Student Researcher

Kristin is majoring in Neuroscience and minoring in Philosophy at Bucknell University.  

© Luis Alvarez 2012