Rochester, Minnesota


Zhao.Chunfeng@mayo.edu Clinical Profile


Chunfeng Zhao, M.D., is focused on orthopedic translational research to improve functional outcomes of musculoskeletal disorders. Dr. Zhao's research niche lies in engineering strategies, including mechanical, chemical and tissue engineering for musculoskeletal tissue repair, regeneration and transplantation.

Additionally, as a scientist with a clinical background and biomechanics training, Dr. Zhao is interested in orthopedic biomechanics-related research — from large-scale joint biomechanics and instrumentation design to small-scale mechanobiology of cells. Visit Dr. Zhao's Orthopedic Biomechanics Research Laboratory to learn more about his research.

Another area of interest is in medical imaging research, which includes using ultrasound elastography techniques to enable earlier or precise diagnosis and outcome prognosis for carpal tunnel syndrome.

Focus areas

  • Tendon acute or chronic injuries, especially flexor tendon, rotator cuff, anterior cruciate ligament and Achilles tendon
  • Tissue engineering for tendon regeneration
  • Spine and joint biomechanics
  • Orthopedic instrumentation design
  • Autologous or allograft transplantation

Significance to patient care

Dr. Zhao's long-term goal is to develop new interventions using mechanical, chemical and tissue engineering approaches to improve functional outcomes after tendon or ligament injuries. Tendon and ligament injuries are among the most common health problems, costing billions of dollars a year in the United States alone. Any advancement in this field in understanding disease mechanism, improving diagnostics, and enhancing prevention and treatment will have a significant impact on patient care.

Professional highlights

  • Translational Research Award for "Purified Exosome Product for Rotator Cuff Repair and Regeneration," Regenerative Medicine Minnesota, 2022-2024
  • Member of the Nominating Committee, Orthopaedic Research Society (ORS), 2014
  • Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research (CORR) ORS Richard A. Brand Award for Outstanding Orthopaedic Research for "Engineering Flexor Tendon Repair With Lubricant Cells and Cytokines in a Canine Model," 2014
  • Topic chair, Tendon and Ligament Committee, Orthopaedic Research Society, 2011-2013
  • Editorial board, BioMed Research International, 2012
  • Best Research Fellow Paper Award, Fourth International Symposium on Ligaments and Tendons for "The Effect of the Gap Size on Tendon Gliding Resistance," 2004


Primary Appointment

  1. Consultant, Department of Orthopedic Surgery

Joint Appointment

  1. Consultant, Department of Surgery
  2. Consultant, Department of Physiology & Biomedical Engineering

Academic Rank

  1. Professor of Orthopedics
  2. Professor of Biomedical Engineering


  1. Research Fellowship Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science
  2. Clinical Fellowship - Spine Surgery Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Peking Union Medical College Hospital
  3. Resident - Orthopedics Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Tianjin Red Cross Hospital
  4. Clinical Fellowship Department of Hand and Micro-Surgery, Tianjin Hospital
  5. Resident Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Tianjin Red Cross Hospital
  6. MD Tianjin Medical College
  7. Certificate Leadership Prescription Program

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