Chair of Translational Biomaterials Research in Orthopedics

Biomaterials Science and Technology Department
University of Twente
The Netherlands

Researcher Orcid ID


Upon completion of Biology and Chemistry studies at the University of Science and Technology in Lille, France, David Eglin relocated to Cardiff, Wales, to start an industrial career at the Dow Corning Research & Development Center. Following doctoral studies in Chemistry at Nottingham Trent University, England, in 2002 he joined Prof. Jacques Livage group at the laboratory of Chemistry of Condensed Matter, Collège de France, Paris, as a post-doctoral researcher. Since 2006, Dr. David Eglin is Principal Investigator and leader of the Polymers team at the AO Research Institute Davos in Switzerland. He has extensive expertise in the synthesis and the processing of responsive materials based on biopolymers such as hyaluronic acid and collagen. His group is notably using additive manufacturing technologies for both basic understanding of biomaterials and cells interaction, and for translational research in the orthopaedic field. In June 2019, he was appointed at the university of Twente and hold the chair of Translational Biomaterials Research in Orthopedics.


The World Health Organization (WHO) has reported that musculoskeletal disorders are the second largest contributor to disability worldwide, with low back pain being the single leading cause of disability globally. These are not just conditions of the aged, but also important disabilities for the economically active population with the greatest proportion of persistent pain of all diseases worldwide. These are commonly linked with depression.

Among the 150 musculoskeletal conditions reported are:

  1. Osteoporosis, osteopenia and associated fragility fractures and traumatic fractures associated with bone tissue. Those are often worsened by infection, which due to the rise of methicillin resistant bacteria, is a major issue nowadays.
  2. Articular injury, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, gout, ankylosing spondylitis linked to cartilage tissue and joints.
  3. Back and neck pain which are often related to intervertebral disc tissue degeneration.
  4. Other inflammatory diseases that compromise the health of musculoskeletal tissues.

The ambition of the chair Translational Biomaterials Research in Orthopedics is to tackle these musculoskeletal problems through the development of innovative biomaterials and manufacturing technologies and their implementation in a patient-oriented research environment.

 musculoskeletal conditions



Illustration of areas of interest, disciplines and technologies addressed within the chair of Translational Biomaterials Research targeting musculoskeletal conditions.

The scientific and technological research challenges addressed within this chair focus on the need of developing advanced biomaterials with translational potential in orthopedics:

  1. Innovative multi-scale biomaterials using additive manufacturing and structuration technologies for precise personalized medicine;
  2. Stimuli-responsive biomaterials permitting unprecedented control over structuration, bio-fabrication and release of biologically active molecules in vitro and in vivo;
  3. New scientific approaches to enhance biological tissue repair based on (bio)polymers that modulate the biological environment through intrinsic and extrinsic anti-inflammatory, immune-modulatory and repair effects.


Stijn Rotman, University of Twente, NL
Romain Bagnol, University of Twente, NL


 Selected scientific publications:

  1. Tognato R, Armiento AR, Bonfrate V, Levato R, Malda J, Alini M, Eglin D, Giancane G, Serra T, A Stimuli‐Responsive Nanocomposite for 3D Anisotropic Cell‐Guidance and Magnetic Soft Robotic, (2019) Adv. Funct. Mater. 2019, 29, 1804647.
  2. Petta D, Armiento AR, Grijpma D, Alini M, Eglin D, D’Este M. 3D bioprinting of a hyaluronan bioink through enzymatic-and visible light-crosslinking, (2018) Biofabrication, 10(4), 044104.
  3. Guillaume O, Geven MA, Sprecher CM, Stadelmann VA, Grijpma DW, Tang TT, ... & Eglin D, Surface-enrichment with hydroxyapatite nanoparticles in stereolithography-fabricated composite polymer scaffolds promotes bone repair. (2017) Acta biomaterialia, 54, pp. 386-398.
  4. ter Boo G-JA, Grijpma DW, Moriarty TF, Richards RG, Eglin D. Antimicrobial delivery systems for local infection prophylaxis in orthopedic- and trauma surgery, (2015) Biomaterials, 52, pp. 113-125.
  5. Kesti M, Müller M, Becher J, Schnabelrauch M, D'Este M, Eglin D, Zenobi-Wong M. A versatile bioink for three-dimensional printing of cellular scaffolds based on thermally and photo-triggered tandem gelation. (2015) Acta Biomaterialia, 11, pp. 162-172.
  6. Loebel C, D'Este M, Alini M, Zenobi-Wong M, Eglin D. Precise tailoring of tyramine-based hyaluronan hydrogel properties using DMTMM conjugation (2015) Carbohydrate Polymers, 115, pp. 325-333.


Recipient of the Jean Leray Award 2011 for exceptional research contributions to the field of biomaterials by a young scientist


  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Society (TERMIS-EU). Elected council member of the European Chapter
  • President of the Swiss Society of Biomaterials and Regenerative Medicine (SSB+RM) from 2017-2019
  • European Society of Biomaterials (ESB) member since 2008    


  • Chair of the European Society for Biomaterials annual meeting 2023, Davos, CH.
  • Scientific Chair of the eCM 2020 on Biofabrication in Orthopedics, Davos, CH.
  • Co-organiser of the Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Society - European Chapter Meeting 2017, > 1200 attendees, Davos, CH.
  • Co-organiser of the Translation Day Symposium at European Society for Biomaterials 2014, Liverpool, UK,  2015, Krakow, PL and 2017, Athens, GR.
  • Co-organiser of the Instructive Biomaterials for Stem Cell Therapies Session at Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Society - European Chapter 2014 Meeting, Genoa, IT.
  • Member of the organising committee of the AO Exploratory Research Symposium in 2011 and 2013, 100 attendees, Davos, CH.
  • Organiser of the Swiss Society for Biomaterials and Regenerative Medicine 2013 meeting, 120 attendees, Davos, CH.
  • Member of the 2010 international scientific review committee for European Orthopaedic Research Society, Davos, CH.
  • Member of the International editorial review board of the eCM Journal
  • Member of the International editorial review board of the Journal of Orthopaedic Translation.