Guilak Lab

Farshid Guilak

Farshid Guilak, Ph.D


Department of Orthopaedics Washington University


Dr. Farshid Guilak is a Professor in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Washington University and Director of Research for the Shriners Hospitals for Children - St. Louis Shriners. He is also the co-director of the Washington University Center of Regenerative Medicine and has appointments in the Departments of Developmental Biology and Biomedical Engineering. His laboratory is pursuing a multidisciplinary approach to investigate the etiology and pathogenesis of osteoarthritis, as a basis for the development of new pharmacologic and stem-cell therapies. He is currently PI of grants from the NIH, NSF, DOD, and several foundations. He has published over 300 articles in peer-reviewed journals and has co-edited four books. He is the editor-in-chief of the Journal of Biomechanics, Associate editor for Osteoarthritis & Cartilage, and serves on numerous other journal editorial boards. He is also the President of the Orthopaedic Research Society and Chair of the Skeletal Biology Structure and Regeneration NIH Study Section, and the first PhD member of the executive committee of the Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF). He has won numerous national and international awards for his research and mentorship.

The laboratory’s research program focuses on osteoarthritis, a painful and debilitating disease of the synovial joints that affects over 27 million people in the United States. His laboratory uses a highly collaborative, multidisciplinary approach to investigate the role of biomechanical and biological factors in the onset and progression of osteoarthritis, with a particular emphasis on the development of new molecular and cell-based therapies. The laboratory has taken an interdisciplinary approach to study the disease at all different scales, ranging from clinical studies of joint loading, weight loss, nutrition, and exercise in people with osteoarthritis, to the development of various animal models of osteoarthritis, to tissue-level models of cartilage physiology and pathology under mechanical loading, and at to the cellular and subcellular levels to understand the transduction pathways involved in mechanical signaling. Each hierarchical size scale has specific advantages and disadvantages; thus, the ability to cross different levels of study in one laboratory is extremely valuable in translating findings from one system to another. Research in the laboratory covers several major areas, including: 1) Obesity, inflammation, and osteoarthritis; 2) Mechanobiology and mechanisms of mechanical signal transduction in cartilage; and 3) Stem cell-based therapies for osteoarthritis.