Ellen Salmon


Current Position: Scientist I, KBI Biopharma

I have grown in up in various places throughout the Midwest, but Detroit, Michigan was my home for the longest. As an undergraduate, I explored research in astrophysics, hydraulics, mechanical engineering, and cancer biology, before settling in biomedical engineering. I was drawn to tissue engineering after participating in an REU with Linda Griffith through EBICS at M.I.T. developing three-dimensional endothelial cell scaffolds. After receiving a B.A. in Engineering Science and a B.E. in Biomedical Engineering from Dartmouth College in June 2014, I joined the Truskey lab!

My research at Duke focuses on using tissue engineered blood vessels (TEBVs) to model vascular aging in vitro. I have previously studied the effects of stress-induced endothelial cell senescence on TEBV vasoreactivity and endothelial cell activation. I am further characterizing how introduction of senolytics improves the recovery of endothelium-dependent vasoreactivity and reduces inflammation after the removal of stressors. I am also evaluating how this affects monocyte adhesion and adhesion of enzyme modified low-density lipoprotein in the TEBV endothelium. 

In addition to my scientific research, I am also interested in the ways that cutting edge engineering research can be incorporated into public education, as well as in activities accessible to the general public. I spent the summer of 2015 working as a science educator for the Montshire Museum of Science in Norwich, VT where I developed new activities for kids ages 8+ related to engineering science and problem solving. I used the skills gained from this experience to develop a high school biology unit based upon the TEBV research I conduct. I also served as the program coordinator for Duke's S.E.N.S.O.R. Saturday Academy for 3 years. This gave me the opportunity to encourage local 9th graders in peer-to-peer mentoring for the program's 8th grade attendees, as well as develop acivities focused on Arduino programming, machining, water safety, and 3-D printing. 

In my spare time I enjoy hiking, making wooden toys for my son, and working my way through the "Dessert" section of my Pinterest board. 

Contact Information

  • Office Location: Fitzpatrick CIEMAS1345
  • Office Phone: 248-835-8014
  • Email Address: ellen.salmon@duke.edu