Senior Researcher - The Scripps Research Institute
McDevitt Lab Graduate Student 2006-11
Project Title:
“Integration of biomaterials into 3D stem cell microenvironments”


Andrés graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Bioengineering from the University of Washington in 2005. At UW, he worked in the labs of Dr. Ceci Giachelli and Dr. Buddy Ratner to apply sphere templating techniques for the development of porous fibrin scaffolds. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in biomedical engineering from Emory University and Georgia Tech.


Bachelor of Science, Bioengineering
University of Washington

PhD Candidate
Georgia Tech and Emory University

Research Interests

In addition to using polymeric microspheres to deliver small molecules within embryoid bodies, we have developed techniques to fabricate and incorporate hydrogel microspheres within embryoid bodies for delivery of bioactive proteins. Methods to control the spatial distribution of multiple microsphere populations are being investigated in order to engineer morphogen gradients within individual embryoid bodies. Morphogen gradients are known to affect cell fate during embryo development and it is our goal to apply this knowledge to tissue engineering applications.  


NIH Cell & Tissue Engineering Training Grant Fellow (2008-2010) STAR, Biomaterials Conference Student Travel Award Hilton Head Student Travel Award (2009) 3rd Place, Student Poster Award, Georgia Stem Cell Symposium (2008) NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, Honorable Mention (2007, 2008) Goizueta Fellowship (2007-2011)

Bratt-Leal AM, Nguyen AH, Hammersmith KA, Singh A, McDevitt TC. A microparticle approach to morphogen delivery within pluripotent stem cell aggregates. Biomaterials. 2013;.
Suri S, Singh A, Nguyen AH, Bratt-Leal AM, McDevitt TC, Lu H. Microfluidic-based patterning of embryonic stem cells for in vitro development studies. Lab on a Chip. 2013;.
Purpura KA, Bratt-Leal AM, Hammersmith KA, McDevitt TC, Zandstra PW. Systematic engineering of 3D pluripotent stem cell niches to guide blood development. Biomaterials. 2012;.
Bratt-Leal AM, Carpenedo RL, Ungrin MD, Zandstra PW, McDevitt TC. Incorporation of biomaterials in multicellular aggregates modulates pluripotent stem cell differentiation. Biomaterials. 2011;.
Lim JJ, Hammoudi TM, Bratt-Leal AM, Hamilton SK, Kepple KL, Bloodworth NC, et al. Development of nano- and microscale chondroitin sulfate particles for controlled growth factor delivery. Acta Biomaterialia. 2011;.