Research Staff

Ted Budden M.S. Research Assistant
Tel: 913-588-0871 Fax: 913-945-7773
Projects and Responsibilities: Ted works on two projects: (1) molecular mechanisms and novel therapeutics for osteoarthritis; (2) role of bone sialoprotein (BSP) in osteoblast differentiation and bone regeneration. His responsibilities include isolation of RNA from both human and animal tissue/cell culture, protein purification through FPLC and HPLC, and gene expression analysis by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR). He is also responsible for certain areas of lab management and maintenance.

Feng, Yi

Yi Feng, Ph.D. Postdoctoral Fellow
Tel: 913-588-0871 Fax: 913-945-7773
Projects and responsibilities: Yi's current studies are focused on the biological mechanisms of post-traumatic osteoarthritis and regulatory mechanisms of osteoblast differentiation during bone regeneration. He is responsible for animal surgeries to generate bone defects in mice/rats and post-traumatic osteoarthritis in mice, post-operative monitoring, mouse colony management, collection of tissues from mice/rats for isolation of cells and RNA for gene expression analyses by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR).


Grahmm Funk, BS, Research Assistant
BS Degrees: Biology, Chemistry, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO
Tel: 913-588-6149 Fax: 913-588-0070
Projects and Responsibilities: Grahmm's background in Biology and Chemistry make him a unique fit within the Orthopedic Research Center. His biochemical background allows him to lead molecular studies within engineering-centered projects. Currently, Grahmm is working on antimicrobial incorporation into various bone cements. Other responsibilities include cell culturing, chemical analysis (HPLC), cadaveric tissue management, general laboratory maintenance, and assisting in resident research.


Qinghua Lu, B.Sc., Senior Research Associate
B.Sc, Nanchang University, Nanjing, P.R. China
Tel: 913-588-0870/ Fax: 913-588-0070
Projects and Responsibilities: Qinghua has worked on multiple orthopedic research projects as a Research Technician/Associate having previously spent time in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School and Children's Hospital, Boston, MA. She has assisted several principal investigators with bone histology, tissue/cell culture, and animal surgery and post-operative care.

Damon Mar

Damon Mar, MS, Research Assistant
Masters Degree, Mechanical Engineering, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS
Tel: 913-588-5413 Fax: 913-588-0700
With a background in mechanical engineering and biomedical research, Damon specializes in mechanical design, biomechanical testing, electrical systems, and complex data acquisition/analysis. Additionally, Damon has years of experience with cadaver tissue handling, dissection, and in-vitro model development. Current research topics include biomechanics of the spine with emphasis on adult spinal deformities, design of spinal instrumentation, novel treatment techniques for periprosthetic joint infections, and revision arthroplasty. Damon provides support for all resident projects, training and additionally contributes to youth education with the KUMC Area Health Education Center.

Michelle Settle

Michelle Settle, Research Lab Administrator
Tel: 913-588-0069 Fax: 913-588-0070
Michelle brings with her over 25 years of administrative management experience, enabling her to develop effective systems for the Center for Orthopedic Research and Education. She coordinates Research Committee Meetings, handles travel and accounts payable for the staff of the Ortho Research Center and maintains IRB protocols for all studies conducted through the lab. Michelle works with editing and submission of manuscripts and abstracts as well as tracking research produced by residents as they move through the Department of Orthopedic Surgery. 
Michelle also facilitates the GSMC 840 Surgical Observation course taught by Dr. Terence McIff, Director of the Orthopedic Research and Education Center, helping bridge the gap between the BioEngineering Program at KU-Lawrence and Department of Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine at The University of Kansas Medical Center.


Mingcai Zhang, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow
Tel: 913-588-0871 Fax: 913-945-7773
Projects and Responsibilities: Mingcai's current research is focused on two projects: (1) the role of bone sialoprotein (BSP) in osteogenesis and bone regeneration; (2) the molecular mechanisms underlying the initiation and progression of osteoarthritis. His general bench work involves preparation of shRNA and cDNA lentiviral constructs for stable knockdown and forced expression of target genes, respectively, preparation of luciferase reporter constructs to assess transcriptional activity, cell culture, total RNA isolation and qPCR analysis, methylated DNA immunoprecipitation (MeDIP), and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assay, etc. He is also responsible for supervision of medical students and graduate students in the laboratory.

Sharon Bradshaw, BA, Clinical Research Coordinator
B.A.,Business, Lamar University, Beaumont, TX
Tel: 913-945-6289 Fax: 913-588-0862
Sharon has 7 years of Clinical Research experience with US Oncology, which provides her with the skills and knowledge to support clinical research conducted by the faculty. This includes protocol development, communication with organizations and committees (such as HSC), and interactions with pharma companies. From recruiting and consent to follow up and data management, Sharon is the vital contact between the doctor and the patient volunteer.

Stephanie Robinson, MS, Clinical Research Coordinator
Masters Degree, Marriage and Family Therapy, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS
Tel: 913-588-0581 Fax: 913-588-0862
Stephanie brings over 5 years of pharmaceutical clinical trial industry experience, including 3 years of project management, to the department, primarily in oncology research. She has managed all study phases from study start-up to database lock. Currently, she is working with Dr. Doug Burton and the International Spine Study Group on studies relating to adult spinal deformities.

Last modified: May 04, 2018