Catalina Pineda Molina is a doctoral student in the Bioengineering Department at the University of Pittsburgh and works in the laboratory of McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine deputy director Stephen Badylak, DVM, PhD, MD. Her research interests are focused on the immune-modulatory effects of adipose derived stem cells used in combination with extracellular matrix scaffolds for regenerative medicine applications.
As reported by Christina Rouvalis, Pitt Magazine, Ms. Molina is a Fulbright Scholar striving to help humanity from a scientific angle. She does research to create new devices to treat disabling conditions such as osteoarthritis, diabetes, and loss of tissue due to trauma. She also wants to advance biotechnological research in Columbia (her home country), where the field is still in its infancy.
The Fulbright Program is a program of highly competitive, merit-based grants for international educational exchange for students, scholars, teachers, professionals, scientists, and artists, founded by United States Senator J. William Fulbright in 1946. Under the Fulbright Program, competitively selected U.S. citizens may become eligible for scholarships to study, conduct research, or exercise their talents abroad; and citizens of other countries may qualify to do the same in the United States. The Fulbright Program is one of the most prestigious awards programs worldwide, operating in over 155 countries. The program was established to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and other countries through the exchange of persons, knowledge, and skills. The Fulbright Program provides 8,000 grants annually to undertake graduate study, advanced research, university lecturing, and classroom teaching. As of 2013, more than 325,400 persons—122,800 from the United States and 202,600 from other countries—have participated in the program since it began.