Joining the BoneFix team at MINES St-Etienne this year is postdoc Léa Dejob. Léa is focused on creating a biodegradable membrane to replace the non-degradable polyethylene terephthalate, which is currently used as the fibre component in the BoneFix fixation patch. With this new membrane, in addition to changes to the fixation composite, it is hoped that a new fixation patch can be made which will be fully resorbed by the body after bone healing has occurred. Hopefully the new membranes will be able to enhance the mechanical properties of the fixation patch as well.
Before working on BoneFix, Léa completed her PhD in Lyon, France, which was co-supervised by Laboratory MATEIS at the National Institute of Applied Science and the Laboratory of Multimaterials and Interfaces at the University of Lyon. Her project involved the development of ceramic coatings for implants made from bioactive glass or calcium phosphate, which were designed to increase the osteo-integration of the implant and thereby reduce its chance of loosening. Micro-sized filaments of the coatings were made via electrospinning and electro-wiring processes, in order to mimic the architecture of collagen fibrils present in bone extracellular matrix.
Léa finds the BoneFix project particularly interesting as it has the potential to improve people’s well-being and health. The multi-disciplinary consortium also provides a clear opportunity to learn from experts in chemistry, biology, mechanics and clinical surgery. When not in the lab, Léa enjoys artistic pursuits such as playing piano, drawing and painting. “I think science is just another field where one can explore and express their creativity. But science can also help us to understand the world we live in!”