Dr. David Vorp

  • Acting Director, Center for Energy and Energy Grid Institute
  • Senior Associate Dean for Research and Facilities, Swanson School of Engineering
  • John A. Swanson Professor of Bioengineering

Dr. David Vorp is the Senior Associate Dean for Research and Facilities at the University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering and the William Kepler Whiteford Professor of Bioengineering, with secondary appointments in the Departments of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Surgery, and the Clinical & Translational Sciences Institute at the University of Pittsburgh. He also serves as a Director of the Center for Vascular Remodeling and Regeneration, the Co-Director of the Center for Medical Innovation, the Interim Director of the Peterson Institute for Nano-Science and Engineering, as well as the Director of the Vascular Bioengineering Laboratory.

The research in Dr. Vorp's lab focuses on the biomechanics, "mechanopathobiology," regenerative medicine, and tissue engineering of tubular tissues and organs, predominantly the vasculature. He is currently studying the biomechanical progression of aortic aneurysms by modeling the mechanical forces that act on the degenerating vessel wall. He is developing a treatment strategy for abdominal aortic aneurysms by delivering adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells to the periadventitial side of the aneurysm to inhibit the matrix degradation commonly seen in the disease progression and promote its regeneration. Lastly, he is designing a small diameter tissue engineered vascular graft to treat cardiovascular diseases. Here he utilizes adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells incorporated in a biodegradable polyurethane-based scaffold (produced by the Wagner Group) that undergoes substantial in vivo remodeling to develop a native-like blood vessel. Dr. Vorp has published more than 105 peer-reviewed research manuscripts and has been awarded over $7 million in research funding from the National Institutes of Health, American Heart Association, Whitaker Foundation, Pittsburgh Foundation, and other sources. He has several patents in the field of vascular bioengineering and is a co-founder of the start-up Neograft Technologies, Inc., a company that applies technology developed in Dr. Vorp's laboratory relating to biodegradable support for arterial vein grafts.

Dr. Vorp is the Chair of the Executive Committee of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Bioengineering Division, President of the International Society for Applied Cardiovascular Biology, and the Secretary of the Executive Committee of the Biomedical Engineering Society. Dr. Vorp is also a member of several other prestigious organizations, such as the American Heart Association, American Society of Artificial Internal Organs, the Tissue Engineering & Regenerative Medicine International Society, and the Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society. His most recent honors include the 2013 Carnegie Science Award in the category of Life Sciences, and being elected to the World Council of Biomechanics for 12 years (2014-2026).