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Eric Farrell

E. (Eric) Farrell

Associate professor

  • Department
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery



The bone tissue engineering research laboratory headed by Dr. Farrell performs basic and translational research with the main aim of investigating how to modulate new bone formation and the various cellular interactions that occur during this process. The research is focused on the process of endochondral ossification as a promising avenue for the generation of clinically relevant quantities of bone tissue to repair large bone defects. Additionally, the experimental model of endochondral ossification is exploited to investigate the role of host immune cells during bone tissue repair and the development of cancer metastasis in the bone niche. The group has specific expertise in 3D cell (co-)cultures and use of scaffolds, in vivo generation of tissue engineered bone, neovascularisation and osteoimmunology.

Field(s) of expertise

Bone tissue engineering, endochondral ossification, osteoimmunology, stem cells and bone metastasis


Education and career

1998-2002 B.A. Mod. Physiology, Trinity College Dublin, 2002-2005 PhD in Physiology and Bioengineering, Trinity College Dublin,

2005-2007 Postdoctoral Research Fellow, in Trinity Centre for Bioengineering, Trinity College Dublin and Anatomy Department, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

2007-2009 Marie Curie Research Fellow, in the departments of Orthopaedics and Otorhinolaryngology of Erasmus Medical Centre, Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

2009-2010 Postdoctoral Researcher, Cardiovascular Group, in the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), National University of Ireland, Galway.

2010-2012 Postdoctoral Researcher, in the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) under FP7 project GAMBA.

2012-2018 Assistant Professor in the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Erasmus MC, University Medical Centre, Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

2018-present Associate Professor, Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Erasmus MC, University Medical Centre, Rotterdam, the Netherlands.


Teaching activities

 Invited lecturer on Minor and Master courses at the Department of Biomechanical Engineering, Technical University Delft, The Netherlands, 2008-present

Other positions

Secretary of TERMIS global (Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine International Society) 2019-present

Scholarships, grants, and awards

PI on FET Open project Breast to Bone. Total amount awarded €3,799,371.
Co-PI of EuroNanoMed III project NanoScores. Total amount awarded €1.016,301
Joint coordinator, Marie Curie Innovative Training Network proposal entitled “Controlling Cartilage to Bone Transitions for Improved Treatment of Bone Defects and Osteoarthritis”. Total amount awarded, €3,607,956.
Awarded €50,000 pilot project grant from Mrace, Erasmus MC in 2016 for project entitled “Development of a humanised in vivo model of prostate cancer bone metastasis: combining oncology with tissue engineering.”
Awarded €100,000 AO Start-up Grant in 2015 by the AO Foundation for project entitled “Generation of new bone using potent allogeneic paediatric mesenchymal stem cells”.
Awarded €50,000 AO Start-up Grant in 2014 by the AO Foundation for project entitled “Endochondral ossification of mesenchymal stem cells in the allogeneic setting for bone defect repair”.
Awarded top cited article 2008-2010 by Elsevier for publication in Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications.
Awarded Marie Curie Intra European Fellowship IVANG (In vitro angiogenesis) to a value of 119,000 Euro, 2008.
Collaborator on a successful Research Frontiers Programme grant from Science Foundation Ireland worth 170,000 Euro, 2007.
Winner of the Genzyme award for excellence in cartilage research at the 2007 meeting of the International Cartilage Repair Society with a 5000 Euro award.
Recipient of European Science Foundation travel grant for Intra-European collaborative research.
Finalist for New Investigator Research Award at the 2007 Orthopaedic Research Society conference in San Diego.
First prize for poster presentation at the winter meeting 2005 of the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland.
Winner of the Donegan Medal at the summer meeting 2004 of the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland.