Keith D. Crawford, M.D., Ph.D.

Dr. Crawford is the director of the Center for Molecular Orthopedic Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a member of Harvard Medical School’s faculty. He is a trained surgeon who uses a “bench to bedside” approach to transfer research-based therapies into the clinical setting. His research focuses on improving our understanding of osteoarthritis in the elderly and the development of adult stem cell-based therapies for the repair of musculoskeletal injuries in the elderly, ballistic injuries in wounded warriors, and stress fractures in athletes. These adult stem cell therapies are intended to optimize the fracture healing process. In 2007, Dr. Crawford’s laboratory discovered a new adult stem cell, the “early lineage adult” stem cell or ELA® cell, which has the ability to differentiate into a wide variety of tissues. The ELA® cell is readily available in a wide variety of tissues and has been shown to differentiate into a number of musculoskeletal tissues. The ELA® cells can be collected from a genetically diverse population of people, which allow its usage in HLA-restricted cell based-therapies. Presently, the ELA® cell is being used in spinal fusion surgical procedures, but has a broad range of potential applications.

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