Matthew Bechard, Ph.D.

Matthew Bechard, Ph.D

Postdoctoral Fellow, Cell & Developmental Biology

VUMC/Stem Cell & Developmental Biology
9465 MRB IV
Nashville 37232-0494
(615) 343-8258 (lab)

The isolation and characterization of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), in recent years, has offered a promising chance at the development of a cell-based replacement therapy for diabetes. At the moment, however, current protocols are severely deficient, only producing small quantities of immature β-cells from hESCs. The goal of my research project is to investigate the underlying mechanism and signals associated with the transition of progenitor cells in the trunk epithelium through an Ngn3hi state toward β-cell specification. Results from this project will provide translationally applicable information that will improve our ability to generate β-cells from human embryonic stem cells as a means to develop more effective treatments for diabetes.