Dr David Bassett BMecSc (Hons), PhD

Dr David Bassett

School of Chemical Engineering
Lecturer in Healthcare Technologies

Contact details

+44 (0)121 371 7695
Telephone (2)
44 (0)121 414 5357
School of Chemical Engineering
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Bassett is a Lecturer in Healthcare Technologies at the School of Chemical Engineering.  David’s scientific interests and expertise lie at the interface of human biology and materials science.  His main research theme is to understand the biological mechanisms that intricately control both the formation and prevention of inorganic minerals within organisms and apply this knowledge in three key areas: to develop improved biomaterials for regenerative medicine; to inspire the synthesis of novel nanostructured inorganics, and to inform the design of improved 3D cell based hard tissue models.


Ph.D. Faculty of Dentistry, McGill University, Canada, 2011.
Thesis title: “Synthesis and applications of bioinspired nanostructured inorganic materials”

B.Med.Sc.(Hons) Biomedical Materials Science, University of Birmingham, UK, 2004.


David has a rich multidisciplinary and international background with a bachelor’s degree from the University of Birmingham in Biomedical Materials Science, a PhD from McGill University, Canada in Dental Science and Postdoctoral research experience at NTNU, Norway in Biophysics where he now also holds an adjunct position.  This international perspective is reflected in his publication record, which features many multi-centred works in leading (bio)materials science journals.


In Vitro models of bone tissue

There is currently much scientific and clinical interest in developing advanced biomaterials for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine to replace lost biological function following disease or trauma. A significant hurdle to application of this essential research field is the necessary and extensive in vitro testing prior to in vivo animal testing before human trials can even be considered. Often there is little correlation between in vitro and in vivo results, largely because in vitro testing takes place in 2D cell cultures under simulated physiological conditions which fail to replicate the complexity of the in vivo environment. This project seeks to develop an early stage in vitro testing platform which better mimics the in vivo environment.

Hierarchical structuring of Mineralised hydrogels

This project seeks to derive microscale structures made in materials that closely resemble the natural extracellular matrix, to encapsulate and order cells and minerals. A modular design principle is applied to control the local chemical and biological environment, facilitate the facile combining of various cell types in the same system and provide gradients of culture conditions and mechanical properties which will in turn allow easier characterisation by a variety of approaches.

Biomimetic syntheses of nanoscale inorganics

Nature offers a rich source of inspiration for the structuring of inorganic materials across a wide range of length scales.  This project took inspiration from the ways in which the human body controls both the deposition and prevention of inorganic mineral in the body to produce novel nanoscale architectures of both biogenic and non-biogenic inorganic materials.  Materials produced via this low temperature route were demonstrated to have unusual nanoscale structures leading to practical utility as catalysts, biosensors and gene vectors.

Other activities

Vice President of the Scandinavian Society for Biomaterials

Reviewer for:

  • Journal of Biomedical Research
  • Biomaterials
  • Journal of Materials Research
  • Advanced Materials
  • Advanced Functional Materials
  • Advanced Healthcare Materials
  • Journal of Materials Chemistry
  • Chemistry
  • Materials Letters
  • Chemistry of Materials
  • Soft Matter
  • Acta Biomaterialia
  • Journal of Biomaterials Applications
  • Colloids and Interface Science
  • Macromolecular Materials and Engineering
  • Journal of the American Chemical Society


Bassett DC, Håti AG, Melø TB, Stokke BT, Sikorski P.  Competitive ligand exchange of crosslinking ions for ionotropic hydrogel formation.  Journal of Materials Chemistry B. 2016; 4: 6175-6182.

Håti AG, Bassett DC, Ribe JM, Sikorski P, Weitz DA, Stokke BT. Versatile, cell and chip friendly method to gel alginate in microfluidic devices. Lab on a Chip. 2016; 16: 3718-3727.

Bjørnøy SH, Bassett DC, Ucar S, Strand BL, Andreassen JP, Sikorski P. A correlative spatiotemporal microscale study of calcium phosphate formation and transformation within an alginate hydrogel matrix.  Acta Biomaterialia. 2016; 44: 254-266.

Bjørnøy SH, Mandaric S, Bassett DC, Åslund AK, Ucar S, Andreassen JP, Strand BL, Sikorski P.  Gelling kinetics and in situ mineralization of alginate hydrogels: A correlative spatiotemporal characterization toolbox.  Acta Biomaterialia. 2016; 44: 243-253.

Abdallah M, Eimar H, Bassett DC, Schnabel M, Nelea V, McKee MD, Cerruti M, Tamimi F.  Diagenesis-inspired Reaction of Magnesium Ions with Surface Enamel Mineral Modifies Properties of Human Teeth. Acta Biomaterialia. 2016; 37: 174-183.

Bjørnøy SH, Bassett DC, Ucar S, Andreassen JP, Sikorski P.  Controlled mineralisation and recrystallisation of brushite within alginate hydrogels.  Biomedical Materials.  2016; 11 (1): 015013.

Ucar S, Bjørnøy SH, Bassett DC, Strand BL, Sikorski P, Andreassen JP.  Nucelation and growth of brushite in the presence of alginate.  Crystal Growth and Design. 2015; 15 (11): 5397–5405.

Danoux CBSS, Bassett DC, Othman Z, Rodrigues AI, Reis RL, Barralet JE, van Blitterswijk CA, Habibovic P. Elucidating the individual effects of calcium and phosphate ions on hMSCs by using composite materials. Acta Biomaterialia. 2015; 17: 1-15.

Bassett DC, Madzovska I, Beckwith KS, Melø TB, Obradovic B, Sikorski P. Dissolution of copper mineral phases in biological fluids and the controlled release of copper ions from mineralized alginate hydrogels. Biomedical Materials. 2015; 10(1): 015006

Bassett DC, Meszaros R, Orzol D, Woy M, Zhang YL, Tiedemann K, Wondraczek L, Komarova S, Barralet JE. A new class of bioactive glasses: calcium-magnesium sulfophosphates. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A. 2014; 102 (8): 2842-2848.

Merle G, Bassett DC, Finch JA, Demopoulos, G, Barralet JE. Self-assembled photoactive heterojunction phase gradient.  Journal of Materials Chemistry A. 2014; 2 (23): 8868-8874.

Tamimi F, Torres J, Al-Abedalla K, Lopez-Cabarcos E, Alkhraisat MH, Bassett DC, Gbureck U, Barralet JE. Osseointegration of dental implants in 3D-printed synthetic onlay grafts customized according to bone metabolic activity in recipient site. Biomaterials. 2014; 35 (21): 5436-5445.

Bassett DC, Merle G, Lennox B, Rabiei R, Barthelat F, Grover LM, Barralet JE. Ultrasonic phosphate bonding of nanoparticles. Advanced Materials. 2013; 25 (41): 5953-5958.

Tamimi F, Comeau P, Le Nihouannen D, Zhang YL, Bassett DC, Khalili S, Gbureck U, Tran S, Komarova S, Barralet JE. Perfluorodecalin and bone regeneration. European Cells & Materials. 2013; 25: 22–36.

Bassett DC, Marelli B, Nazhat SN, Barralet JE.  Stabilisation of amorphous calcium carbonate with nanofibrillar biopolymers. Advanced Functional Materials. 2012; 22 (16): 3460–3469.

Bassett DC, Grover LM, McKee MD, Muller F, Barralet JE, Serum protein controlled nanoparticle synthesis. Advanced Functional Materials. 2011; 21 (15): 2968–2977.

Bassett DC, McKee MD and Barralet JE, The role of the air-liquid interface in protein mediated biomineralization of calcium carbonate. Crystal Growth and Design. 2011; 11 (3): 803-810.

Tamimi F, Le Nihouannen D, Bassett DC, Ibasco S, Gbureck U, Knowles J, Wright A and Barralet JE. Biocompatibility of magnesium phosphate minerals and their stability under physiological conditions. Acta Biomaterialia. 2011; 7 (6): 2678-2685.

Tamimi F, Torres J, Bassett D, Barralet J, Cabarcos EL, Resorption of monetite granules in alveolar bone defects in human patients. Biomaterials. 2010; 31 (10): 2762-2769.

Habibovic P, Bassett DC, Doillon CJ, Gerard C, McKee MD, Barralet JE. Collagen Biomineralization In Vivo by Sustained Release of Inorganic Phosphate Ions. Advanced Materials. 2010; 22 (16): 1858 – 1862.

Tamimi F, Torres J, Gbureck U, Lopez-Cabarcos E, Bassett DC, Alkhraisat MH, Barralet JE. Craniofacial vertical bone augmentation: a comparison between 3D printed monolithic monetite blocks and autologous onlay grafts in the rabbit. Biomaterials. 2009; 30 (31):6318-26

Tamimi F, Torres J, Lopez-Cabarcos E, Bassett DC, Habibovic P, Luceron E, Barralet JE. Minimally invasive maxillofacial vertical bone augmentation using brushite based cements. Biomaterials. 2009, 30 (2): 208-216.

Pedraza CE, Bassett DC, McKee MD, Nelea V, Gbureck U, Barralet JE. The importance of particle size and DNA condensation salt for calcium phosphate nanoparticle transfection. Biomaterials. 2008; 29 (23): 3384-3392.

Habibovic P, Gbureck U, Doillon CJ, Bassett DC, van Blitterswijk CA and Barralet JE. Osteoconduction and osteoinduction of low-temperature 3D printed bioceramic implants. Biomaterials. 2008; 29 (7): 944-953.

Barralet JE, Duncan CO, Dover MS, Bassett DC, Nishikawa H, Monaghan A, Gbureck U Cortical bone screw fixation in ionically modified apatite cements. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part B-Applied Biomaterials. 2005; 73B (2): 238-243.