George Altankov

Institut de Bioenginyeria de Catalunya

Experimental Sciences & Mathematics

I graduated from the Higher Medical Institute, Varna, Bulgaria in 1974 starting my research carrier as Assistant Perofessor in the Dept. of Physiology in the same Institute. After obtaining my PhD in 1984 I joined the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (Institute of Biophysics Sofia) where I got my first habilitation as Associate Professor (1994) and grew up to Full Professor (2002), head of Department "Cell Adhesion" and Research Director. I am an interdisciplinary oriented scientist working in the field of cell-biomaterial interaction and tissue engineering. In 1991-1993 I got my postdoc in Southwestern Medical Center Dallas. During the following decade I spent more than 7 years as guest-scientist in Germany, and later almost 2 years in Spain as visiting Prfofessor at UPC. Since April 2007 I am ICREA Research Professor at the Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC) heading the research group Molecular Dynamics at Cell-Biomaterials Interface.

Research interests

I am working in the field of cell-biomaterials interaction and tissue engineering. On that topic I have published over 100 original papers and filed 5 patents. As ICREA Research Professor at IBEC I have created a new research group Molecular dynamics at cell-biomaterials interface, where we seek to understand the cellular mechanisms that determine biocompatibility of putative implant materials. My research interests might be summarized as follows: -Cell-biomaterials interaction -Tissue engineering -Development of provisional ECM at biomaterials interface -Nanofibers design and production via electrospinning -Controlled differentiation of mesenchimal stem cells -Endothelization and neovascularization of implants.

Selected publications

- Bianchi MV, Awaja K & Altankov G 2017, 'Dynamic adhesive environment alters the differentiation potential of young and ageing mesenchymal stem cells',  Materials Science and Engineering: C, vol. 78, pp 467-474.

- Nedjari S, Awaja F & Altankov G 2017,'Three Dimensional Honeycomb Patterned Fibrinogen Based Nanofibers Induce Substantial Osteogenic Response of Mesenchymal Stem Cells', Scientific Reports, 7, 15947.

- Gugutkov D, Gustaysson J, Cantini M, Salmeron-Sanchez M & Altankov G 2017, 'Electrospun fibrinogen-PLA nanofibres for vascular tissue engineering', Journal Of Tissue Engineering And Regenerative Medicine, 11, 10, 2774 - 2784.

- Gugutkov D, Awaja F, Belemezova K, Keremidarska M, Krasteva N, Kuyrkchiev S, Gallego Ferrer G, Seker S,  Elcin AE, Elcin YM & Altankov G 2017, 'Osteogenic Differentiation of Mesenchymal Stem Cells using Hybrid Nanofibers with Different Configurations and Dimensionality', Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A, 105, 7, 2065-2074.

- Hristova-Panusheva K, Keremidarska-Markova M, Altankov G & Krasteva N 2017, 'Age-related Changes in Adhesive Phenotype of Bone Marrow-derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells on Extracellular Matrix Proteins', Journal of New Results in Science (JNRS) 2017, vol 6 no.1 11-19.

Selected research activities

Coordinator European Project: FP7-PEOPLE-2012-IAPP (2013-2016) –FIBROGELNET– “Network for Development of Soft Nanofibrous Construct for Cellular Therapy of Degenerative Skeletal Disorders”

PI National Project: MAT 2015 – 69315 –C3 (2015-2017) - MYOHEAL - Muscle regeneration after injury. Engineered biodegradable ion–loaded scaffolds to promote muscle regeneration. Collaborative Project funded by Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation

Associate Editor Journal of Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering

Member European Society for Artificial Organs (ESAO)

Director  1 PHD and 1 Master Theseses (sucesfully defended in 2017)