Margot  Damaser,  Ph.D.

Margot Damaser, Ph.D.


Lerner Research Institute, 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44195
Location: ND2-20

Phone: (216) 444-1103
Fax: (216) 444-9198


In my Urological Biomechanics Laboratory, we conduct regenerative medicine, tissue engineering and device development research aimed at improving the health of individuals with pelvic floor dysfunction, including urinary and fecal incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse. We have developed devices for wireless catheter-free monitoring of bladder and colon function and dysfunction and are conducting animal and clinical studies to validate and improve them. These devices can be utilized to better understand the neural control of the bladder and colon and to enable closed loop neuromodulation of these organ systems.

We also utilize animal models to test cellular and noncellular methods of regenerating nerves, muscles and connective tissue that are damaged during childbirth and other polytraumatic injuries to the pelvic region. These potential regenerative therapies include stem cells, secretions of stem cells, electrical stimulation, and elastogenic nanoparticles. We have several issued patents, as well as patent applications. We are continuously working with corporate colleagues to license and translate this research. We expect that this multifactorial approach will lead to improved methods of diagnosing and treating these common pelvic floor disorders.

Lay Summary

We use tools such as wireless communication and integrated circuit design to improve treatments for pelvic floor dysfunction, including stress urinary incontinence (leakage of urine), fecal incontinence (leakage of stool), and pelvic organ prolapse (the genitourinary organs fall out of their appropriate position in the pelvic region). These conditions are common among the elderly. We also use animal models to investigate potential treatments to regenerate damaged pelvic tissue including nerves, muscles, and the connective tissue between organs, which will one day potentially provide a cure to these common problems.

View publications for Margot Damaser, Ph.D.

Sun, D.Z., B. Abelson, P. Babbar, and M.S. Damaser (2019) Harnessing the Mesenchymal Stem Cell Secretome for Regenerative Urology. Nature Reviews Urology. 16(6): 363-375.

Abelson, B., S. Majerus, D. Sun, B.C. Gill, E. Versi, and M.S. Damaser (2019) Ambulatory Urodynamic Monitoring: State of the Art and Future Directions. Nature Reviews Urology. 16(5): 291-301.

Basu, A., S. Majerus, E. Ferry, I. Makovey, H. Zhu, M.S. Damaser (2019) Is Submucosal Bladder Pressure Monitoring Feasible? Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part H: Journal of Engineering in Medicine. 233(1):100-113.

Deng, K., B.M. Balog, D.L. Lin, B. Hanzlicek, Q.-X. Song, H. Zhu, M.S. Damaser (2019) Daily Bilateral Pudendal Nerve Electrical Stimulation Improves Recovery from Stress Urinary Incontinence. Interface Focus. 9(4):20190020. (Cover article)

Balog, B.M., K. Deng, V. Labhasetwar, K.J. Jones, and M.S. Damaser (2019) Electrical Stimulation for Neuroregeneration in Urology: A New Therapeutic Paradigm. Current Opinion in Urology. 29(4): 458-465.

Balog, B.M., A. Tangada, P. Sheth, Q.-X. Song, B.M. Couri, L.L. Porras, G.G. Deng, M.S. Damaser (2019) Combination Phosphodiesterase Type 4 Inhibitor and Phosphodiesterase Type 5 Inhibitor Treatment Reduces Non-Voiding Contractions in a Rat Model of Overactive Bladder. PLoS One. 2019 Aug 28; 14(8):e0220788.

Janssen, K., D.L. Lin, B. Hanzlicek, B.M. Balog, C.H. van der Vaart, M.S. Damaser (2019) Multiple Doses of Stem Cells Maintain Urethral Function in a Model of Neuromuscular Injury Resulting in Stress Urinary Incontinence. American Journal of Physiology – Renal Physiology. 317(4):F1047-F1057.

Gammie A, et al.; The International Continence Society Urodynamic Equipment Working Group. International continence society guidelines on urodynamic equipment performance. Neurourol Urodyn 2014 Jan 4. doi: 10.1002/nau.22546. [Epub ahead of print].

Dissaranan C, et al. Rat mesenchymal stem cell secretome promotes elastogenesis and facilitates recovery from simulated childbirth injury. Cell Transplant 2013 Jul 17 [Epub ahead of print].

Gill BC, et al. Stress incontinence in the era of regenerative medicine: reviewing the importance of the pudendal nerve. J Urol 2013;190:22-8. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2013.01.082. Review.

Lenis AT, et al. Impact of parturition on chemokine homing factor expression in the vaginal distention model of stress urinary incontinence. J Urol 2013;189:1588-94. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2012.09.096.

Jiang HH, et al.  Effects of acute selective pudendal nerve electrical stimulation after simulated childbirth injury.  Am J Physiol Renal Physiol 2013;304:F239-47.

Jiang HH, et al. Bladder dysfunction changes from underactive to overactive after experimental traumatic brain injury. Exp Neurol 2013;240:57-63. doi: 10.1016/j.expneurol.2012.11.012.

Spirka T, et al. Effect of material properties on predicted vesical pressure during a cough in a simplified computational model of the bladder and urethra. Ann Biomed Eng 2013;41:185-94.

Gill BC, et al. Neurotrophin therapy improves recovery of the neuromuscular continence mechanism following simulated birth injury in rats. Neurourol Urodyn 2013;32:82-7. doi: 10.1002/nau.22264.

Cruz M, et al.  Pelvic organ distribution of mesenchymal stem cells injected intravenously after simulated childbirth injury in female rats. Obstet Gynecol Int 2012;2012:612946.

Salcedo L, et al.  Mesenchymal stem cells can improve anal pressures after anal sphincter injury.  Stem Cell Res 2013;10:95-102.

Damaser MS, et al. Electrical stimulation of anal sphincter or pudendal nerve improves anal sphincter pressure. Dis Colon Rectum 2012;55:1284-94. doi: 10.1097/DCR.0b013e31826ae2f8.

Pastelín CF, et al. Neural pathways of somatic and visceral reflexes of the external urethral sphincter in female rats. J Comp Neurol 2012;520:3120-34. doi: 10.1002/cne.23079.

Sajadi KP, et al. Pudendal nerve stretch reduces external urethral sphincter activity in rats. J Urol 2012;188:1389-95. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2012.06.006.

Vaegler M, et al. Stem cell therapy for voiding and erectile dysfunction. Nat Rev Urol 2012 Jun 19. doi: 10.1038/nrurol.2012.111. [Epub ahead of print].

Couri BM, et al. Animal models of female pelvic organ prolapse: lessons learned. Expert Rev Obstet Gynecol 2012;7:249-260.

Goldman HB, et al.  Will we ever use stem cells for the treatment of SUI? ICI-RS 2011. Neurourol Urodyn 2012;31:386-9. doi: 10.1002/nau.22217. Review.

Salcedo L, et al. Low current electrical stimulation upregulates cytokine expression in the anal sphincter. Int J Colorectal Dis 2012;27:221-5. doi: 10.1007/s00384-011-1324-3.

US Patent Patent Title Issue Date First-Named Inventor
10,537,274 Standardized measurement of physiological pressures using an air-charged catheter apparatus 1/21/2020 Margot Damaser, PhD

02/15/2021 |  

Medication to Strengthen, Grow Muscles Shows Promise for Treating Stress Urinary Incontinence

Bimagrumab, a novel monoclonal antibody that enlarges muscle cells and builds muscle strength, has shown promise as a potential treatment for stress urinary incontinence (SUI). It’s the first muscle growth promoter to be studied for increasing urethral pressure and continence in an SUI model.

12/18/2019 |  

The UroMonitor Takes Monitoring Out of the Clinic

Created and developed by researchers in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, a wireless, insertable pressure sensor to assist in the diagnosis of urinary incontinence is now one step closer to clinical application. The team is actively recruiting patients for a trial that will begin in early 2020.

05/09/2019 |  

The Potential Regenerative Power of Mesenchymal Stem Cells for Ischemic Kidney Injury

Prolonged interruption of renal blood supply from renal artery clamping during partial nephrectomy, followed by reperfusion, can cause tissue injury and necrosis, resulting in organ dysfunction and chronic kidney disease. Effective therapies for renal ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI) are lacking and urgently needed.

07/13/2018 |  

A 'Fitness Tracker for the Bladder' for Diagnosis, Treatment of Urinary Incontinence

A wireless insertable pressure sensor for diagnosis and treatment of urinary incontinence in women has the potential to eliminate the need for urodynamics and the discomfort and inconvenience it entails.