Sefton, Michael Vivian

BASc, ScD 
7T1 Chemical 
Inducted: 2007 

Michael Sefton, distinguished University Professor, is the Michael E. Charles Chair in Chemical Engineering at the University of Toronto. His high-impact career has focused on how to develop new strategies to treat disease by combining living cells with synthetic polymers to create artificial tissues and organs. He is an internationally renowned leader in the development and use of new biomaterials, particularly in the context of Tissue Engineering and cardiovascular devices. This is frontier Biomedical Engineering.

Following his MIT doctorate in 1974, Michael returned to the University as an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering. His recognized talents led to his appointment in 1999 to lead the University’s renewed Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering. He led the organization to world leadership in Biomedical Engineering, contributing to the global expansion of this discipline.

Michael Sefton’s current research focuses on understanding the biological responses (such as blood clotting, inflammation, new blood vessel formation) to biomaterials and related devices to improve the safety and performance of these materials. He has had a special interest in creating novel devices for the treatment of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and chronic wounds.


  • Leadership in the field of biomaterials and Tissue Engineering.
  • Stimulated an international focus on Tissue Engineering for organ transplants.
  • Author of some 300 publications and holder of 15 U.S. and international patents.
  • Presenter at more than 350 scientific meetings in 20 countries.
  • Co-founder of Rimon Therapeutics to bring new biomaterials to benefit patients.
  • Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering Albright and Wilson America’s Ward, (1989); Century of Achievement Award (1999).
  • Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering, Teaching Award (1992).
  • Clemson Award for Basic Research, Society of Biomaterials (1993).
  • Fellow of the Chemical Institute of Canada, of Biomaterials Science and Engineering, of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering and of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.
  • Appointed as University Professor (2003), the mark of outstanding merit.
  • Fellow, Royal Society of Canada (2005).
  • President of the U.S. Society for Biomaterials (2005-2006).