Harrison Hiraki

PhD Candidate
Biomedical Engineering, University of Michigan

hirakih (at) umich (dot) edu

harrison photo.jpeg

Hometown: Portland, Oregon

Education: BS in Bioengineering, University of Washington, 2018

Research interests: My undergraduate research interest was predominantly in tissue engineering. I worked to engineer a material that best represented the biochemical and biomechanical properties of the kidney cortex microenvironment to help elucidate underlying pathways in kidney disease progression. A growing interest in cancer therapeutic research has led me to the Baker Lab where I am working to understand how matrix mechanical properties affect the mechanism by which cancer cells migrate from the primary tumor, travel through the stroma, and intravasate into nearby microvessels. I aim to develop a representative model of the tumor microenvironment that can be incorporated with patient-derived cancer cells and has translational merit as a high-throughput drug testing device.

Outside of lab interests: Outside of the lab, I enjoy playing basketball and reading about/creating Japanese-style ceramic pottery. I also love exploring new restaurants in A2 and am working to improve my admittedly mediocre cooking skills. Go Huskies and Go Blue!


Davidson CD, Jayco DKP, Matera DL, DePalma SJ, Hiraki HL, Wang WY, Baker BM. "Myofibroblast activation in synthetic fibrous matrices composed of dextran vinyl sulfone," Acta Biomaterialia, 2020, doi:10.1013/j.actbio.2020.01.009.

Nagao RJ, Hiraki HL, Phong KT, Xue J, Himmelfarb J, Zheng Y. "Perivascular Cells Direct Endothelial Cell Fate in a Renal Microvascular Disease Model," (In preparation to Kidney Int.). 

Hiraki HL, Nagao RJ, Himmelfarb J, Zheng Y. "Fabricating a Kidney Cortex Extracellular Matrix-Derived Hydrogel," Journal of Visualized Experiments, 2018, doi:10.3791/58314.


Hiraki HL, Matera DL, Baker BM. "Increasing stromal matrix fiber density promotes multicellular outgrowth from MCF10a spheroids," BMES Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, October 16-19, 2019, podium.