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Stephen J. Florczyk, Ph.D.

Research Interests:

  • Advanced analysis techniques (omics) for characterization of cellular differentiation and response.
  • Combinatorial 3D scaffold libraries for in vitro and in vivo screening.
  • 3D scaffold fabrication and characterization.
  • Development of in vitro models using 3D porous scaffolds that mimic the in vivo tumor microenvironment.  

My research at NIST focuses on the analysis of human bone marrow stromal cell (hBMSC) differentiation on three-dimensional (3D) scaffolds and in response to chemical signaling. 3D scaffolds seeded with hBMSCs will be analyzed with omics (genomics, transcriptomics, translatomics, and proteomics) to indicate gene expression and protein synthesis as the cells differentiate into osteogenic lineage. This research will provide information about the molecular signaling pathways that control osteogenic differentiation in hBMSCs. The implications from this research will inform tissue engineers and clinicians about the beneficial structures in 3D scaffolds for bone tissue engineering applications and also provide guidelines for the markers expressed by osteogenically differentiated cells.  

My PhD research focused on the use of natural polymer 3D porous scaffolds for bone tissue engineering and tumor microenvironment applications. I improved the processing of the chitosan-alginate (CA) scaffolds for bone tissue engineering applications. The processing time was reduced and batch yields were increased through the processing improvements. The CA scaffolds were evaluated for functional bone tissue engineering in vivo in a rat calvarial defect model. The CA scaffolds provided improved osteogenic response versus an untreated defect and CA scaffolds with BMP-2 had the greatest osteogenic response. The CA scaffolds were also evaluated for tumor microenvironment applications, to provide better in vitro models for cancer research. This work focused on glioma (brain cancer), prostate cancer, and breast cancer cell lines. Our research demonstrated that the CA scaffolds provided an environment that better replicated the in vivo tumor microenvironment than 2D substrates or Matrigel. Research with human prostate cancer cells cultured on the CA scaffolds demonstrated that the scaffolds provided a favorable environment for the cells and supported interaction with human white blood cells, indicating that this in vitro system could potentially be used to develop cancer vaccines.  


Honors and Awards:

NIST National Research Council (NRC) Postdoctoral Research Associateship, 2012.

University of Washington, College of Engineering Egtvedt Fellowship, 2011.

Outstanding Graduate Student Lecture, Senior Category, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, 2009.

Graduate School Fund for Excellence and Innovation Award, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, 2006.

First place, Graduate Student Presentation, 3rd International Conference on Ethical Issues in Biomedical Engineering, Rochester, NY, 2005.

Honorable mention, Glass Manufacturer Industry Council (GMIC) 50x Stronger Glass Contest, 2005.

Graduate Student Presentation Award, Scientific Conference of The Society for Physical Regulation in Biology and Medicine, South Lake Tahoe, CA, 2005.  



Florczyk SJ, Leung M, Li Z, Huang JI, Hopper RA, Zhang M, Evaluation of 3D porous chitosan-alginate scaffolds in rat calvarial defects for bone regeneration applications. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research, Part A, accepted.  

Galperin A, Oldinski RA, Florczyk SJ, Breyers JD, Zhang M, Ratner BD, Integrated bi-layered scaffold for osteochondral tissue engineering. Advanced Healthcare Materials, (2012), doi: 10.1002/adhm.201200345.  

Florczyk SJ, Leung M, Jana S, Li Z, Bhattarai N, Huang JI, Hopper RA, Zhang M, Enhanced bone tissue formation by alginate gel-assisted cell seeding in porous ceramic scaffolds and sustained release of growth factor. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research, Part A, 100A(12); 3408-3415 (2012).  

Florczyk SJ, Liu G, Kievit FM, Lewis AM, Wu JD, Zhang M, 3D porous chitosan-alginate scaffolds: New matrix for studying prostate cancer cell-lymphocyte interaction in vitro. Advanced Healthcare Materials, 1(5); 590-599 (2012).  

Jana S, Florczyk SJ, Leung M, Zhang M, High-strength pristine porous chitosan scaffolds for tissue engineering. Journal of Materials Chemistry, 22(13); 6291-6299 (2012).  

Florczyk SJ, Kim D, Wood DL, Zhang M, Influence of processing parameters on pore structure of 3D porous chitosan-alginate polyelectrolyte complex scaffolds. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research, Part A, 98A(4); 614-620 (2011).  

Leung M, Kievit F, Florczyk SJ, Veiseh O, Wu J, Park JO, Zhang M, Chitosan-alginate scaffold culture system for hepatocellular carcinoma increases malignancy and drug resistance. Pharmaceutical Research, 27(9); 1939-1948 (2010).  

Kievit FM, Florczyk SJ, Leung M, Veiseh O, Park JO, Disis ML, Zhang M, Chitosan-alginate 3D scaffolds as a mimic of the glioma tumor microenvironment. Biomaterials, 31(22); 5903-5910 (2010).  

Florczyk SJ and Saha S, Manufacture of nanoparticles from bone: a preliminary study. Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants, 19(4); 323-329 (2009).  

Florczyk SJ and Saha S, Ethical Issues in Nanotechnology. Journal of Long-Term Effects of Medical Implants, 17(3); 271-280 (2007).  

Florczyk SJ and Saha S, "Ethical Issues in Biomedical Research", in Wiley Encyclopaedia of Biomedical Engineering, Ed. M. Akay, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, (2006). (Book Chapter)  



Zhang M, Kievit F, Florczyk S., "Rapid enrichment of the cancer stem cell population using chitosan-alginate scaffolds." US Patent application 61/621,683 filed April 9, 2012. Patent Pending.  

stephen florczyk


NRC Postdoctoral Fellow
Biosystems & Biomaterials Division
Biomaterials Group


Ph.D. Materials Science and Engineering, University of Washington, 2012

M.S. Biomedical Materials Engineering Science, Alfred University, 2006

B.S. Ceramic Engineering, Alfred University, 2004.


Phone: 301-975-6842
Email: stephen.florczyk@nist.gov
Fax: 301-975-4977