Associate Professor Andrea O'Connor

  • Room: Level: GR Room: G01
  • Building: Chemical Engineering #2
  • Campus: Parkville

Research interests

  • 3D printing
  • Antimicrobial materials
  • Biofilms
  • Biomaterials (Biodegradable materials, scaffolds, hydrogels)
  • Medical devices (Implants)
  • Tissue engineering

Personal webpage


Associate Professor O'Connor is the Deputy Head of the School of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering. Her expertise is in chemical and biomedical engineering with particular focus areas including biomaterials, tissue engineering, porous materials and downstream processing for biotechnology. She leads the Tissue Engineering Research Group in the Department of Biomedical Engineering.

Her research and teaching are focused in cross disciplinary applications of engineering involving biological systems, including a strong interest in 3D soft tissue engineering. She has active collaborations with several medical research institutes and medical device companies in Australia and has worked in the chemical industry in Australia and overseas.

Current Research Activities include:
Nano and Biomolecular Engineering - Tissue engineering Nanostructured materials
Bioprocess Engineering - Separations technology 3D printing

Recent publications

  1. Biswas DP, O'Brien-Simpson NM, Reynolds EC, O'Connor A, Tran PA. Comparative study of novel in situ decorated porous chitosan-selenium scaffolds and porous chitosan-silver scaffolds towards antimicrobial wound dressing application. Journal of Colloid and Interface Science. Academic Press. 2018, Vol. 515. DOI: 10.1016/j.jcis.2018.01.007
  2. Biswas D, Tran P, Tallon Galdeano C, O'Connor A. Combining mechanical foaming and thermally induced phase separation to generate chitosan scaffolds for soft tissue engineering. JOURNAL OF BIOMATERIALS SCIENCE-POLYMER EDITION. VSP. 2017, Vol. 28, Issue 2. DOI: 10.1080/09205063.2016.1262164
  3. Kusuma G, Brennecke S, O'Connor A, Kalionis B, Heath D. Decellularized extracellular matrices produced from immortal cell lines derived from different parts of the placenta support primary mesenchymal stem cell expansion. PLOS ONE. Public Library of Science. 2017, Vol. 12, Issue 2. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0171488
  4. Gu D, Tan S, Xu C, O'Connor A, Qiao G. Engineering tough, highly compressible, biodegradable hydrogels by tuning the network architecture. CHEMICAL COMMUNICATIONS. Royal Society of Chemistry. 2017, Vol. 53, Issue 50. DOI: 10.1039/c7cc02811c
  5. Gu D, O'Connor A, Qiao G, Ladewig K. Hydrogels with smart systems for delivery of hydrophobic drugs. EXPERT OPINION ON DRUG DELIVERY. Informa Healthcare. 2017, Vol. 14, Issue 7. DOI: 10.1080/17425247.2017.1245290
  6. Braunger J, Bjornmalm A, Isles N, Cui J, Henderson T, O'Connor A, Caruso F. Interactions between circulating nanoengineered polymer particles and extracellular matrix components in vitro. BIOMATERIALS SCIENCE. R S C Publications. 2017, Vol. 5, Issue 2. DOI: 10.1039/c6bm00726k
  7. Karimi F, McKenzie T, O'Connor A, Qiao G, Heath D. Nano-scale clustering of integrin-binding ligands regulates endothelial cell adhesion, migration, and endothelialization rate: novel materials for small diameter vascular graft applications. JOURNAL OF MATERIALS CHEMISTRY B. RSC Press. 2017, Vol. 5, Issue 30. DOI: 10.1039/c7tb01298e
  8. Shakouri-Motlagh A, O'Connor A, Brennecke S, Kalionis B, Heath D. Native and solubilized decellularized extracellular matrix: A critical assessment of their potential for improving the expansion of mesenchymal stem cells. ACTA BIOMATERIALIA. Elsevier BV. 2017, Vol. 55. DOI: 10.1016/j.actbio.2017.04.014
  9. O'Connor A, Vinu A. Proceedings of the 9th International Mesostructured Materials Symposium. MICROPOROUS AND MESOPOROUS MATERIALS. Elsevier Science. 2017, Vol. 238. DOI: 10.1016/j.micromeso.2016.09.042
  10. Sun MT, O'Connor A, Wood J, Casson R, Selva D. Tissue Engineering in Ophthalmology: Implications for Eyelid Reconstruction. OPHTHALMIC PLASTIC AND RECONSTRUCTIVE SURGERY. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 2017, Vol. 33, Issue 3. DOI: 10.1097/IOP.0000000000000792
  11. Li X, Burger S, O'Connor A, Ong L, Karas J, Gras S. An enzyme-responsive controlled release system based on a dual-functional peptide. CHEMICAL COMMUNICATIONS. Royal Society of Chemistry. 2016, Vol. 52, Issue 29. DOI: 10.1039/c5cc10480g
  12. Morrison W, Marre D, Grinsell D, Batty A, Trost N, O'Connor A. Creation of a Large Adipose Tissue Construct in Humans Using a Tissue-engineering Chamber: A Step Forward in the Clinical Application of Soft Tissue Engineering. EBIOMEDICINE. Elsevier. 2016, Vol. 6. DOI: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2016.03.032
  13. Khalid A, Tran P, Norello R, Simpson D, O'Connor A, Tomljenovic-Hanic S. Intrinsic fluorescence of selenium nanoparticles for cellular imaging applications. NANOSCALE. Royal Society of Chemistry. 2016, Vol. 8, Issue 6. DOI: 10.1039/c5nr08771f
  14. Tran P, O'Brien-Simpson N, Reynolds E, Pantarat N, Biswas D, O'Connor A. Low cytotoxic trace element selenium nanoparticles and their differential antimicrobial properties against S-aureus and E-coli. NANOTECHNOLOGY. IOP Publishing. 2016, Vol. 27, Issue 4. DOI: 10.1088/0957-4484/27/4/045101
  15. Gu D, Ladewig K, Klimak M, Haylock D, McLean KM, O'Connor A, Qiao G. Amphiphilic core cross-linked star polymers as water-soluble, biocompatible and biodegradable unimolecular carriers for hydrophobic drugs. POLYMER CHEMISTRY. Royal Society of Chemistry. 2015, Vol. 6, Issue 36. DOI: 10.1039/c5py00655d

View a full list of publications on the University of Melbourne’s ‘Find An Expert’ profile