Kristina Rinker

Associate Professor

Chemical and Petroleum Engineering; Physiology and Pharmacology


Contact information


Office : CCIT125A

Research and teaching

Area of Focus

  • Fluid force effects on transcriptional regulation and biomarker expression

Summary of Research

Research in the Rinker Laboratory focuses on  how  fluid  flow  affects  cell  and  nanoparticle  behavior  with  relevance  to  cardiovascular  disease,  stem  cells,  and  cancer. These effects are  further  studied  in  animal  models  or  human  tissues  to  confirm  in  vivo  relevance, and then used to build applications that influence human health.  Of particular interest is  the  transcriptional  regulation  of  gene  expression  in  both  health  and  disease,  with  primary targets being arterial tissues, stem cells, and  cancer  metastasis.    The Rinker lab  has  developed  in  vitro  research  tools  for  use  in  physiological  profiling,  drug  target/biomarker  identification,  tissue  engineering,  and  the screening of pharmaceuticals, nanoparticles and MRI contrast agents.


Dr. Rinker is the Director of the Centre for Bioengineering Research and Education and an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering (Schulich School of Engineering) and Department of Physiology  and  Pharmacology  (Cumming School of Medicine). Her research is highly collaborative locally and internationally, and focuses on how fluid flow affects cell and nanoparticle behavior with relevance to cardiovascular disease and cancer.  Dr.  Rinker is actively involved in technology development and commercialization through university spin‐off companies and industrial and governmental partnerships in the areas of cardiovascular and cancer detection and treatment.  Her previous academic appointments include being an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at Colorado State University  (2000‐2005), and an Assistant Research Professor in Biomedical Engineering at Duke University (1998‐2000).   She received a BS in chemical engineering from University of Alabama in 1992 and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from North Carolina State University in 1998.

Dr. Rinker is the Lead for the Early Cancer Detection Initiative (ECDI), a developing program supported by the Charbonneau Cancer Institute.