Megan Laura McCain, PhD

Title(s)Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering
SchoolViterbi School of Engineering, Bme
AddressDRB 318
University Park Campus
Los Angeles CA 90089-1111
Phone+1 213 821 0791
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    McCain Lab Website

    Megan L. McCain earned her bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering from Washington University in St. Louis in 2006. As an undergraduate, she worked as a summer intern in the Worldwide Safety Sciences Department at Pfizer, Inc., and in the Research Resources Branch at the National Institute on Aging. She completed her doctoral studies in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard University, including one year abroad in the Department of Physiology at the University of Bern, Switzerland. While a graduate student, Megan was the recipient of an American Heart Association Pre-doctoral Fellowship and the Derek Bok Certificate of Distinction in Teaching. She received her PhD in Engineering and Applied Sciences in 2012 and continued at Harvard University as a postdoctoral fellow at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. McCain joined the Department of Biomedical Engineering at University of Southern California in January 2014. She has a secondary appointment in the Department of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. She is a member of the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES), American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) and the American Heart Association (AHA).

    Collapse Research 
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    Engineering a Microphysiological System to Model the Infarct Border Zone and Interrogate Oxygen-Dependent Cell-Cell Communication in the Myocardium
    NIH R01HL153286Jun 15, 2020 - Mar 31, 2025
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Establishing Mechanisms of Human Proximal Tubule Regeneration in an Engineered Organ on Chip Platform
    NIH R21EB025534Sep 23, 2017 - Jul 31, 2021
    Role: Principal Investigator

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    Collapse Publications
    Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Researchers can login to make corrections and additions, or contact us for help. to make corrections and additions.
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    1. Regulation of oxytocin-induced calcium transients and gene expression in engineered myometrial tissues by tissue architecture and matrix rigidity. Curr Res Physiol. 2023; 6:100108. Maxey AP, Travis JM, McCain ML. PMID: 38107790; PMCID: PMC10724203.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:
    2. Methods for dynamic and whole volume imaging of the zebrafish heart. Dev Biol. 2023 12; 504:75-85. Bakis I, Sun Y, Abd Elmagid L, Feng X, Garibyan M, Yip JK, Yu FZ, Chowdhary S, Fernandez GE, Cao J, McCain ML, Lien CL, Harrison MR. PMID: 37708968; PMCID: PMC10841891.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    3. User-friendly microfluidic system reveals native-like morphological and transcriptomic phenotypes induced by shear stress in proximal tubule epithelium. APL Bioeng. 2023 Sep; 7(3):036106. Khalil NN, Petersen AP, Song CJ, Chen Y, Takamoto K, Kellogg AC, Chen EZ, McMahon AP, McCain ML. PMID: 37584027; PMCID: PMC10424157.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1  
    4. Engineering Programmable Material-To-Cell Pathways Via Synthetic Notch Receptors To Spatially Control Cellular Phenotypes In Multi-Cellular Constructs. bioRxiv. 2023 May 20. Garibyan M, Hoffman T, Makaske T, Do S, March AR, Cho N, Pedroncelli N, Lima RE, Soto J, Jackson B, Khademhosseini A, Li S, McCain M, Morsut L. PMID: 37293089; PMCID: PMC10245658.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:
    5. A myocardial infarct border-zone-on-a-chip demonstrates distinct regulation of cardiac tissue function by an oxygen gradient. Sci Adv. 2022 Dec 09; 8(49):eabn7097. Rexius-Hall ML, Khalil NN, Escopete SS, Li X, Hu J, Yuan H, Parker SJ, McCain ML. PMID: 36475790.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 2     Fields:    
    6. Editorial: Modeling neuromuscular diseases to determine molecular drivers of pathology and for drug discovery. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2022; 10:1017356. Smith AST, McCain ML, Bothwell M, Mack DL. PMID: 36274836; PMCID: PMC9581269.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1  
    7. Modeling Patient-Specific Muscular Dystrophy Phenotypes and Therapeutic Responses in Reprogrammed Myotubes Engineered on Micromolded Gelatin Hydrogels. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2022; 10:830415. Barthélémy F, Santoso JW, Rabichow L, Jin R, Little I, Nelson SF, McCain ML, Miceli MC. PMID: 35465312; PMCID: PMC9020228.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3  
    8. Heterogeneous pdgfrb+ cells regulate coronary vessel development and revascularization during heart regeneration. Development. 2022 02 15; 149(4). Kapuria S, Bai H, Fierros J, Huang Y, Ma F, Yoshida T, Aguayo A, Kok F, Wiens KM, Yip JK, McCain ML, Pellegrini M, Nagashima M, Hitchcock PF, Mochizuki N, Lawson ND, Harrison MMR, Lien CL. PMID: 35088848; PMCID: PMC8918812.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    9. Quantifying Propagation Velocity from Engineered Cardiac Tissues with High-Speed Fluorescence Microscopy and Automated Analysis Software. Methods Mol Biol. 2022; 2485:133-145. Petersen AP, McCain ML. PMID: 35618903.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    10. Engineering the Cellular Microenvironment of Post-infarct Myocardium on a Chip. Front Cardiovasc Med. 2021; 8:709871. Khalil NN, McCain ML. PMID: 34336962; PMCID: PMC8316619.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4  
    11. Engineering skeletal muscle tissues with advanced maturity improves synapse formation with human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived motor neurons. APL Bioeng. 2021 Sep; 5(3):036101. Santoso JW, Li X, Gupta D, Suh GC, Hendricks E, Lin S, Perry S, Ichida JK, Dickman D, McCain ML. PMID: 34286174; PMCID: PMC8282350.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 7  
    12. Contact photolithography-free integration of patterned and semi-transparent indium tin oxide stimulation electrodes into polydimethylsiloxane-based heart-on-a-chip devices for streamlining physiological recordings. Lab Chip. 2021 02 23; 21(4):674-687. Yip JK, Sarkar D, Petersen AP, Gipson JN, Tao J, Kale S, Rexius-Hall ML, Cho N, Khalil NN, Kapadia R, McCain ML. PMID: 33439202; PMCID: PMC7968549.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:Animals
    13. Tools, techniques, and future opportunities for characterizing the mechanobiology of uterine myometrium. Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2021 05; 246(9):1025-1035. Maxey AP, McCain ML. PMID: 33554648; PMCID: PMC8113740.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions:    Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    14. Characterization of Gelatin Hydrogels Cross-Linked with Microbial Transglutaminase as Engineered Skeletal Muscle Substrates. Bioengineering (Basel). 2021 Jan 06; 8(1). Gupta D, Santoso JW, McCain ML. PMID: 33418892; PMCID: PMC7825108.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 18  
    15. Engineering Shape-Controlled Microtissues on Compliant Hydrogels with Tunable Rigidity and Extracellular Matrix Ligands. Methods Mol Biol. 2021; 2258:57-72. Rexius-Hall ML, Ariyasinghe NR, McCain ML. PMID: 33340354.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    16. Mitochondrial architecture in cardiac myocytes depends on cell shape and matrix rigidity. J Mol Cell Cardiol. 2021 01; 150:32-43. Lyra-Leite DM, Petersen AP, Ariyasinghe NR, Cho N, McCain ML. PMID: 33038389.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 7     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    17. Optical Clearing of Skeletal Muscle Bundles Engineered in 3-D Printed Templates. Ann Biomed Eng. 2021 Feb; 49(2):523-535. Ariyasinghe NR, Santoso JW, Gupta D, Pincus MJ, August PR, McCain ML. PMID: 32748107.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 5     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    18. Mitochondrial division inhibitor 1 (mdivi-1) increases oxidative capacity and contractile stress generated by engineered skeletal muscle. FASEB J. 2020 09; 34(9):11562-11576. Rexius-Hall ML, Khalil NN, Andres AM, McCain ML. PMID: 32652761.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 3     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    19. Neuromuscular disease modeling on a chip. Dis Model Mech. 2020 07 07; 13(7). Santoso JW, McCain ML. PMID: 32817118; PMCID: PMC7358135.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 6     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    20. Regulation of calcium dynamics and propagation velocity by tissue microstructure in engineered strands of cardiac tissue. Integr Biol (Camb). 2020 03 06; 12(2):34-46. Petersen AP, Cho N, Lyra-Leite DM, Santoso JW, Gupta D, Ariyasinghe NR, McCain ML. PMID: 32118279.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 4     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    21. Extended culture and imaging of normal and regenerating adult zebrafish hearts in a fluidic device. Lab Chip. 2020 01 21; 20(2):274-284. Yip JK, Harrison M, Villafuerte J, Fernandez GE, Petersen AP, Lien CL, McCain ML. PMID: 31872200; PMCID: PMC8015799.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 8     Fields:    Translation:Animals
    22. Matrix-guided control of mitochondrial function in cardiac myocytes. Acta Biomater. 2019 10 01; 97:281-295. Lyra-Leite DM, Andres AM, Cho N, Petersen AP, Ariyasinghe NR, Kim SS, Gottlieb RA, McCain ML. PMID: 31401347; PMCID: PMC6801042.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 6     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    23. Engineering cardiac microphysiological systems to model pathological extracellular matrix remodeling. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2018 10 01; 315(4):H771-H789. Ariyasinghe NR, Lyra-Leite DM, McCain ML. PMID: 29906229; PMCID: PMC6230901.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 14     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    24. Microenvironmental Modulation of Calcium Wave Propagation Velocity in Engineered Cardiac Tissues. Cell Mol Bioeng. 2018 Oct; 11(5):337-352. Petersen AP, Lyra-Leite DM, Ariyasinghe NR, Cho N, Goodwin CM, Kim JY, McCain ML. PMID: 31719889; PMCID: PMC6816715.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 11  
    25. Featured Article: TGF-β1 dominates extracellular matrix rigidity for inducing differentiation of human cardiac fibroblasts to myofibroblasts. Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2018 04; 243(7):601-612. Cho N, Razipour SE, McCain ML. PMID: 29504479; PMCID: PMC6582399.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 22     Fields:    Translation:HumansCells
    26. Engineering micromyocardium to delineate cellular and extracellular regulation of myocardial tissue contractility. Integr Biol (Camb). 2017 09 18; 9(9):730-741. Ariyasinghe NR, Reck CH, Viscio AA, Petersen AP, Lyra-Leite DM, Cho N, McCain ML. PMID: 28726917.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 14     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    27. Mitochondrial function in engineered cardiac tissues is regulated by extracellular matrix elasticity and tissue alignment. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2017 Oct 01; 313(4):H757-H767. Lyra-Leite DM, Andres AM, Petersen AP, Ariyasinghe NR, Cho N, Lee JA, Gottlieb RA, McCain ML. PMID: 28733449; PMCID: PMC5668604.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 28     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    28. Toward improved myocardial maturity in an organ-on-chip platform with immature cardiac myocytes. Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2017 11; 242(17):1643-1656. Sheehy SP, Grosberg A, Qin P, Behm DJ, Ferrier JP, Eagleson MA, Nesmith AP, Krull D, Falls JG, Campbell PH, McCain ML, Willette RN, Hu E, Parker KK. PMID: 28343439; PMCID: PMC5786366.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 19     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    29. Fabrication of Micromolded Gelatin Hydrogels for Long-Term Culture of Aligned Skeletal Myotubes. Methods Mol Biol. 2017; 1668:147-163. Suh GC, Bettadapur A, Santoso JW, McCain ML. PMID: 28842908.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 7     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    30. Prolonged Culture of Aligned Skeletal Myotubes on Micromolded Gelatin Hydrogels. Sci Rep. 2016 06 28; 6:28855. Bettadapur A, Suh GC, Geisse NA, Wang ER, Hua C, Huber HA, Viscio AA, Kim JY, Strickland JB, McCain ML. PMID: 27350122; PMCID: PMC4924097.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 59     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    31. Coupling primary and stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes in an in vitro model of cardiac cell therapy. J Cell Biol. 2016 Feb 15; 212(4):389-97. Aratyn-Schaus Y, Pasqualini FS, Yuan H, McCain ML, Ye GJ, Sheehy SP, Campbell PH, Parker KK. PMID: 26858266; PMCID: PMC4754718.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 28     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    32. Angiotensin II Induced Cardiac Dysfunction on a Chip. PLoS One. 2016; 11(1):e0146415. Horton RE, Yadid M, McCain ML, Sheehy SP, Pasqualini FS, Park SJ, Cho A, Campbell P, Parker KK. PMID: 26808388; PMCID: PMC4725954.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 11     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    33. Cytoskeletal prestress regulates nuclear shape and stiffness in cardiac myocytes. Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2015 Nov; 240(11):1543-54. Lee H, Adams WJ, Alford PW, McCain ML, Feinberg AW, Sheehy SP, Goss JA, Parker KK. PMID: 25908635; PMCID: PMC4778402.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 20     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    34. Human airway musculature on a chip: an in vitro model of allergic asthmatic bronchoconstriction and bronchodilation. Lab Chip. 2014 Oct 21; 14(20):3925-36. Nesmith AP, Agarwal A, McCain ML, Parker KK. PMID: 25093641; PMCID: PMC4167568.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 38     Fields:    Translation:HumansCells
    35. Modeling the mitochondrial cardiomyopathy of Barth syndrome with induced pluripotent stem cell and heart-on-chip technologies. Nat Med. 2014 Jun; 20(6):616-23. Wang G, McCain ML, Yang L, He A, Pasqualini FS, Agarwal A, Yuan H, Jiang D, Zhang D, Zangi L, Geva J, Roberts AE, Ma Q, Ding J, Chen J, Wang DZ, Li K, Wang J, Wanders RJ, Kulik W, Vaz FM, Laflamme MA, Murry CE, Chien KR, Kelley RI, Church GM, Parker KK, Pu WT. PMID: 24813252; PMCID: PMC4172922.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 417     Fields:    Translation:HumansCells
    36. Engineering cardiac cell junctions in vitro to study the intercalated disc. Cell Commun Adhes. 2014 Jun; 21(3):181-91. McCain ML, Desplantez T, Kléber AG. PMID: 24754499.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 1     Fields:    Translation:HumansCells
    37. Micromolded gelatin hydrogels for extended culture of engineered cardiac tissues. Biomaterials. 2014 Jul; 35(21):5462-71. McCain ML, Agarwal A, Nesmith HW, Nesmith AP, Parker KK. PMID: 24731714; PMCID: PMC4057039.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 77     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    38. Matrix elasticity regulates the optimal cardiac myocyte shape for contractility. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2014 Jun 01; 306(11):H1525-39. McCain ML, Yuan H, Pasqualini FS, Campbell PH, Parker KK. PMID: 24682394; PMCID: PMC4042196.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 54     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    39. Microfluidic heart on a chip for higher throughput pharmacological studies. Lab Chip. 2013 Sep 21; 13(18):3599-608. Agarwal A, Goss JA, Cho A, McCain ML, Parker KK. PMID: 23807141; PMCID: PMC3786400.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 178     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    40. Micropatterning Alginate Substrates for in vitro Cardiovascular Muscle on a Chip. Adv Funct Mater. 2013 Aug 12; 23(30):3738-3746. Agarwal A, Farouz Y, Nesmith AP, Deravi LF, McCain ML, Parker KK. PMID: 26213529; PMCID: PMC4511503.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 42  
    41. Recapitulating maladaptive, multiscale remodeling of failing myocardium on a chip. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Jun 11; 110(24):9770-5. McCain ML, Sheehy SP, Grosberg A, Goss JA, Parker KK. PMID: 23716679; PMCID: PMC3683774.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 69     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    42. A tissue-engineered jellyfish with biomimetic propulsion. Nat Biotechnol. 2012 Aug; 30(8):792-7. Nawroth JC, Lee H, Feinberg AW, Ripplinger CM, McCain ML, Grosberg A, Dabiri JO, Parker KK. PMID: 22820316; PMCID: PMC4026938.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 146     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    43. Cooperative coupling of cell-matrix and cell-cell adhesions in cardiac muscle. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Jun 19; 109(25):9881-6. McCain ML, Lee H, Aratyn-Schaus Y, Kléber AG, Parker KK. PMID: 22675119; PMCID: PMC3382528.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 73     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    44. Electrical coupling and propagation in engineered ventricular myocardium with heterogeneous expression of connexin43. Circ Res. 2012 May 25; 110(11):1445-53. Beauchamp P, Desplantez T, McCain ML, Li W, Asimaki A, Rigoli G, Parker KK, Saffitz JE, Kleber AG. PMID: 22518032; PMCID: PMC3381798.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 21     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    45. Muscle on a chip: in vitro contractility assays for smooth and striated muscle. J Pharmacol Toxicol Methods. 2012 May-Jun; 65(3):126-35. Grosberg A, Nesmith AP, Goss JA, Brigham MD, McCain ML, Parker KK. PMID: 22521339; PMCID: PMC4184427.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 63     Fields:    Translation:HumansAnimalsCells
    46. Connexin43 ablation in foetal atrial myocytes decreases electrical coupling, partner connexins, and sodium current. Cardiovasc Res. 2012 Apr 01; 94(1):58-65. Desplantez T, McCain ML, Beauchamp P, Rigoli G, Rothen-Rutishauser B, Parker KK, Kleber AG. PMID: 22287588; PMCID: PMC3307380.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 32     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    47. Cell-to-cell coupling in engineered pairs of rat ventricular cardiomyocytes: relation between Cx43 immunofluorescence and intercellular electrical conductance. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2012 Jan; 302(2):H443-50. McCain ML, Desplantez T, Geisse NA, Rothen-Rutishauser B, Oberer H, Parker KK, Kleber AG. PMID: 22081700; PMCID: PMC3339855.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 33     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    48. Ensembles of engineered cardiac tissues for physiological and pharmacological study: heart on a chip. Lab Chip. 2011 Dec 21; 11(24):4165-73. Grosberg A, Alford PW, McCain ML, Parker KK. PMID: 22072288; PMCID: PMC4038963.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 204     Fields:    Translation:AnimalsCells
    49. Mechanotransduction: the role of mechanical stress, myocyte shape, and cytoskeletal architecture on cardiac function. Pflugers Arch. 2011 Jul; 462(1):89-104. McCain ML, Parker KK. PMID: 21499986.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 110     Fields:    Translation:Cells
    50. Connexin 43 expression delineates two discrete pathways in the human atrioventricular junction. Anat Rec (Hoboken). 2008 Feb; 291(2):204-15. Hucker WJ, McCain ML, Laughner JI, Iaizzo PA, Efimov IR. PMID: 18085635; PMCID: PMC2756604.
      View in: PubMed   Mentions: 34     Fields:    Translation:HumansCells
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