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A team of University of Wisconsin researchers engineered vocal fold tissue that transmits sound and vibrates like native tissue. This is a major step in developing treatments for patients with voice impairments due to damaged vocal cords. “Bioengineered vocal fold mucosa for voice restoration” was published in the November 18, 2015, issue of Science Translational Medicine.

Several members of the Department of Surgery were involved in the research:

  • Nathan Welham, PhD, CCC-SLP, associate professor of surgery, Division of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, is corresponding author on the paper.
  • Changying Ling, associate scientist, is a member of Dr. Welham’s lab and lead researcher on the paper.
  • Immunology expert Will Burlingham, PhD, professor of surgery, and graduate student Matthew Brown of the Division of Transplantation were co-authors.
  • Jack Jiang, MD, PhD, and graduate student Erin Devine of the Division of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery were co-authors.

Additional UW-Madison co-authors include materials expert Sundaram Gunasekaran, PhD, of the Department of Biological Systems Engineering, along with proteomics expert Lloyd Smith, PhD, and senior scientist Brian Frey, PhD, of the Department of Chemistry.

The story has appeared in numerous national and international news outlets and in news organizations around the world.

Read the full story and watch a video of Dr. Welham explaining the research. Copyright © 2016 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System