Research group  leaders at the BBZ:  Dr. Ronny Schulz  

Research group
leaders at the BBZ:
Dr. Ronny Schulz

Curriculum vitae

Short biography
Career path and Education

Short biography

Ronny M. Schulz’s research interests are mainly related to cartilage tissue and its unique biomechanical and mechano-biological properties as well as the conception of novel strategies for GMP-compliant bioreactor systems for the manufacture of three-dimensional artificial cartilage grafts.

His interest in cartilage tissue (engineering) began in the year 2000 when he sustained a focal cartilage lesion in his left knee and discovered that no adequate therapy existed. He then did an internship at Co.don AG, the first commercial manufacturer of ACT (autologous chondrocyte transplantation) therapy in Germany, where his research focus included the evaluation of beneficial effects of electromagnetic fields on human periosteal cells.

Ronny M. Schulz received the Diploma degree in Chemical Engineering and a focus in Biotechnology with the thesis "Development of a bioreactor system for an in vitro cultivation and stimulation of human chondrocytes", which was funded by 5th FP - Project “IMBIOTOR – a machine to process tissue engineered implants”.
For his PhD thesis entitled “Advanced Tools for Articular Cartilage Tissue Engineering: Bioreactors, Monitoring, Scaffolds, and Defect Model” he carried out his research at the University of Leipzig in several interdisciplinary projects.
From 2006-2009 he has led “Cartilage / Bone Group” in a cooperative (funded by Federal Ministry of Education and Research of Germany) project with a focus on the “Multiparametric Monitoring and Steering of Mesenchymal Stem Cell-derived Cartilage Formation in 3D Production Systems“.
His research focus also includes the monitoring of extracellular matrix components in autologous cartilage (grafts) with novel and established techniques and methodologies, namely 13C-NMR-MAS spectroscopy, MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry performed in close collaboration with the `Institute for Medical Physics and Biophysics´in addition to the ultrasound biomicroscopy technology provided by the BCRT .

In parallel he established, together with surgeons of the Medical Faculty of Leipzig, a large animal model on merino sheep. This model uses a chronic, focal osteochondral defect in stifle joints to represent the similar aetiology and pathogenesis as seen at the human femoral condyle. Randomised preclinical studies using this model for matrix-coupled ACT have shown similar outcomes to human cases.
Since 2009 and 2011 he has been the principal investigator and study director in the TRM (Translational Centre for Regenerative Medicine Leipzig) funded projects “Evaluation of tissue engineered MSC-based MACT in a GLP-study” and “Establishing the human MSC-based MACT as an Advanced Therapy Medicinal Product (ATMP)”, respectively. The aim of these preclinical studies is the development and evaluation of autologous MSC-based cartilage grafts as a cell-based medicinal product  for the repair of focal osteochondral defects.
For these translational projects and also for third party funded non-clinical studies on cartilage repair in the above mentioned large animal model he serves as GLP-study director at the local GLP-test facility of the Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology (Fh-IZI).

Since 2012 Dr. Schulz acts as principal investigator in a collaborative research project with Miltenyi Biotec GmbH wherein their novel CliniMACS Prodigy device is applied for the intraoperative, single-step manufacture of a 3D cartilage graft based on the automatised separation of the CD271+ cell population, as these specialised stem cells exhibiting higher chondrogenic differentiation potential MSC-BBZ.
Currently, Dr. Schulz is Master Student (MSc) in the extra-occupational Master's (degree) programme on “Clinical Research and Translational Medicine” at the Coordination Centre for Clinical Trials of the University of Leipzig.

Career path and Education

School Leaving Examination at Grammar School “Leon Foucault”, Hoyerswerda

Military service; Electrical Engineering Instructor, Weißenfels

01/98-08/98

CNC - Technician, Hoyerswerda

Student of Chemistry Engineering, Specialty Biotechnology, University of Applied Sciences Lausitz, Senftenberg

Diploma degree in Chemistry Engineering at the University of Applied Sciences Lausitz, Senftenberg. Practical work was carried out at the Institute of Anatomy, Medical Faculty of the Eberhard Karls University Tuebingen and German Research Centre for Biotechnology, Braunschweig. Topic of the thesis was "Development of a bioreactor system for an in vitro cultivation and stimulation of human chondrocytes"

Change of job to the Professorship `Cell Techniques and Applied Stem Cell Biology´ at Medical Faculty of the University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany

Scientific Employee in the 5th FP-Project “IMBIOTOR – a machine to process tissue engineered implants”

Scientific Employee in the EFRE-Project “NMR quality control/quality assurance (QC/QA) - Analysis for autologous cartilage implants”

Scientific advisor in the formel.1-Project “In vitro - Regeneration of articular cartilage in a bioreactor and Re-implantation into animal model for the reconstruction of traumatic focal cartilage defects”

Leader of the `bioreactor group´ in the BMBF project „Multiparametric Monitoring and Steering of Mesenchymal Stem Cell derived Cartilage Formation in 3D Production Systems (MS CartPro)“

Scientific co-investigator in the DFG Project “Analysis of extracellular matrix in artificial cartilage”

PhD thesis (Dr. rer. nat) at the Institute of Biochemistry of the Faculty of Biosciences, Pharmacy and Psychology of the University of Leipzig. Title of the dissertation “Advanced Tools for Articular Cartilage Tissue Engineering: Bioreactors, Monitoring, Scaffolds, and Defect Model”

Overseas visiting scientist of the Royal Society-funded Project “Effects of the collagen fragments and mechanical loading in chondrocytes" of Dr. T. T. Chowdhury, Queen Mary University of London

Principal Investigator in a TRM-(Translational Centre for Regenerative Medicine Leipzig) funded Project Evaluation of tissue engineered mesenchymal stem cells-based autologous cartilage transplants in a GLP-study

Study director in an a TRM-(Translational Centre for Regenerative Medicine Leipzig) funded GLP-study „Evaluation of cell-free and tissue engineered autologous cartilage grafts based on mesenchymal stem cells in a chronic focal cartilage defect model in the knee joint of adult Merino sheep” at the GLP test facility Fraunhofer-Institut für Zelltherapie und Immunologie (Fh-IZI), AG Zelltechnik/GLP, Perlickstraße 1, 04103 Leipzig, Germany

Management program „From Research to Market“ at the Graduate School of Management Leipzig (HHL), Leipzig, Germany

Master Student (MSc) of Clinical Research and Translational Medicine, Institute for Medical Informatics, Statistics and Epidemiology (IMISE) of the Medical Faculty of the University Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany

Principal Investigator in a TRM-(Translational Centre for Regenerative Medicine Leipzig) funded Project „Establishing the human MSC-based MACT as an Advanced Therapy Medicinal Product (ATMP)”

Principal Investigator in an industry-funded GLP-Study „Testing of tumorigenesis and biodistribution of the ATMP Chondrospheres® in a GLP-compliant small animal model” at the GLP test facility Fraunhofer-Institut für Zelltherapie und Immunologie (Fh-IZI), AG Zelltechnik/GLP, Perlickstraße 1, 04103 Leipzig, Germany

Study director in an industry-funded GLP-Study “Preclinical trial to examine the efficacy and safety of the treatment with the autologous chondrocyte transplantation ovine test sample co.don chondrosphere® (ACT3D-S) compared to untreated control group in subjects with cartilage defects of the knee in medial femoral condyle” at the GLP test facility Fraunhofer-Institut für Zelltherapie und Immunologie (Fh-IZI), AG Zelltechnik/GLP, Perlickstraße 1, 04103 Leipzig, Germany

Study director in an industry-funded Project “Study of the correlation between the redifferentiation potential of chondrocytes in spheroids and the rate of dedifferentiation of monolayer culture“ at the GLP test facility Fraunhofer-Institut für Zelltherapie und Immunologie (Fh-IZI), AG Zelltechnik/GLP, Perlickstraße 1, 04103 Leipzig, Germany

Principal Investigator in a ERDF (European Regional Development Fund)“-funded Projekt „Development and validation of a platform technology for intraoperative sorting and application of CD271+ mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) using the example of the treatment of hyaline cartilage lesions“

Study director in an industry-funded Project „Service  contract for Clinical experts“ at the Professorship `Cell Techniques and Applied Stem Cell Biology´, Medical Faculty of the University of Leipzig

Principal Investigator in a TRM-(Translational Centre for Regenerative Medicine Leipzig) funded Project „Establishing the human MSC-based MACT as an Advanced Therapy Medicinal Product (ATMP)”

Principal Investigator in an ERDF (European Regional Development Fund)-funded Project “Procurement  of the flow cytometer MACSQuant® Analyzer 10 for the sterile and automated analysis of cells” at the Professorship `Cell Techniques and Applied Stem Cell Biology´, Medical Faculty of the University of Leipzig

Principal Investigator in an ERDF (European Regional Development Fund)-funded Project “Automated  isolation of preclinical and clinical applicable cells” at the Professorship `Cell Techniques and Applied Stem Cell Biology´, Medical Faculty of the University of Leipzig

Project coordinator and Principal Investigator in a BMBF-funded project “Translation  from proof of concept to clinical application: MSC-based matrix-associated autologous cartilage transplantation (MACT) as an Advanced Therapy Medicinal Product (ATMP)”


last update: 16.10.2017 

Contact

Dr. Ronny M. Schulz
Dipl. Ing. (FH), cand. MSc
Universität Leipzig
Centre for Biotechnology and Biomedicine
Deutscher Platz 5
04103 Leipzig

Phone: +49 341 97-31352
Fax: +49 341 97-31359
E-Mail

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