James Hammel, MD
Assistant Professor, Department of Surgery and Chief, Pediatric Cardiac Surgery
Expertise: Heart Valve patches using Mesenchymal Stem Cells 

Dr. Hammel is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Surgery, Cardiothoracic at UNMC and Chief of Pediatric Cardiac Surgery at Children's Hospital. His research interests focus on the creation of a cell-based matrix that is would serve to replace a defective heart valve. By testing various cell types, he hopes to determine which environments are best suited to grow, form, and generate functional tissue valves. Dr. Hammel and his research group are taking a regenerative and bioengineering approach in an attempt to create a novel model for prosthetic heart valves. By combining various cell types, culture conditions, scaffold material, and protocols, they hope to create a heart valve that will harbor the needs of the heart in a growing child. He will collaborate with Drs. Linxia Gu and Kevin Cole, engineers in the Mechanical and Material Engineering Department at UNL.