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Tim Wright, PhD

About Dr. Wright

Dr. Wright’s research efforts focus on orthopedic implant performance through approaches that include clinical, radiographic, and biomechanical measures and that are integrated across disciplines such as radiology, orthopedic surgery, biomaterials, and biomedical engineering. He has published more than 300 peer-reviewed articles. He has also helped develop implant systems for knee, hip, and elbow replacement that have gone on to commercial distribution to patients worldwide.  

Dr. Wright received his undergraduate degree from Lehigh University and his graduate degrees from Stanford University, after which he joined the Hospital for Special Surgery. He is a recipient of honors for excellence in research from the Hip Society and the Knee Society and earned a Kappa Delta Award from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons for outstanding musculoskeletal research. Dr. Wright received a Director's Special Citation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for his work on a forum of academic, industry, and FDA representatives striving to improve the regulatory process for orthopedic devices. A past Whitaker Fellow and past recipient of a Research Career Development Award from the NIH, Dr. Wright served as president of the Orthopedic Research Society in 1992. He was the Program Director on an NIH-funded musculoskeletal research training grant at HSS for ten years and served as the first Director of the Hospital’s NIH-sponsored Core Center for Skeletal Integrity. He is currently the Coordinating Program Director of the NIH-funded Clinical and Translational Science Center at Weill Cornell. Dr. Wright is a former consulting editor for research of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery and was co-editor of the Journal of Orthopaedic Research for 18 years. He is a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering and a recipient of the Alfred Shands Award from the Orthopaedic Research Society for significant lifetime contributions to orthopedics.


Improving orthopedic implant performance through approaches that include implant retrieval analysis, computational models of implant fixation and joint kinematics and multidisciplinary approaches that combine biomechanics with clinical, radiographic, and pathological measures.

Preventing traumatic arthritis through studies of joint mechanobiology and contact mechanics aimed at identifying loading regimes and biological treatments that can mitigate joint degradation.

Research Interests

Design and Performance of Orthopaedic Implants
Tribocorrosion in Modular Connections
Mechanobiology of Bone
Post-Traumatic Arthritis
Additive Manufacturing of Orthopaedic Implants

Extramural Grant Funding

NIH, T32 Combined Engineering and Orthopedic Training Program (Preceptor)
Kellen French Foundation, The Unhappy TKR
NIH, R13, Clinician Scientist Career Development Program (Co-PI)
Kellen French Foundation, Arthrofibrosis in TKA (Co-PI)
NIH, R01, MRI as a Biomarker for Adverse Local Tissue Reaction (Co-Inv)
NIH, UL1, Clinical Translational Science Center (Coordinating Program Director)
Kirby Foundation, New Directions in Joint Replacement Design (PI)
Clark Foundation, Biomechanics Research Aimed at Preventing and Treating Osteoarthritis (PI)


Specialized Centers

Institute for Implant Analysis
Weill Clinical and Translational Science Center

Special Expertise

Biomechanical Engineering

Clinical Trials



FM Kirby Chair of Orthopedic Biomechanics, Hospital for Special Surgery
Professor of Applied Biomechanics in Orthopaedic Surgery, Weill Cornell Medicine
Member, Graduate Field of Biomedical Engineering, College of Engineering, Cornell University
Coordinating Program Director, Weill Cornell Center for Translational and Clinical Science


Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA        B.S.        1971        Materials Science
Stanford University, Stanford, CA        M.S.        1972        Materials Science
Stanford University, Stanford, CA        Ph.D.        1976        Materials Science
Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, NY    PostDoc    1977        Biomechanics


Dean's List, Lehigh University
Graduated with Highest Honors, Lehigh University
Bradley Stoughton Student Award, American Society for Metals
Frank Stinchfield Award, The Hip Society, 1985 
Research Career Development Award, NIH, 1987-1992
Ann Doner Vaughan Award, Kappa Delta Sorority, for Outstanding Research in Orthopaedics, 1989 
President, Orthopaedic Research Society, 1992
Ramon Gustillo Visiting Professor, Hennepin County Medical Center & University of Minnesota, 1993
Knee Society Award, 1994
Stanford University Distinguished Lecture in Biomechanical Engineering, 1994
Director’s Special Citation, Food & Drug Administration, 1997
Best Scientific Poster, 19th Annual AAHKS Meeting, 2009
Alfred R. Shands, Jr., MD Award, ORS, for significant lifetime contributions to orthopaedics, 2013 
Best Electronic Scientific Poster, International Society for Technology in Arthroplasty Mtg., 2014
Otto Aufranc Award, The Hip Society, 2015, 202 
Top Clinical Orthopaedic and Related Research® reviewer, 2016-present
2017 Heritage Healthcare Innovation Award Finalist, Crain’s New York
Keynote Speaker, Holiday Hip and Knee Course, HSS, New York, 2017
R Lane Smith Visiting Professor, Dept of Orthopaedics, Stanford University, 2019



Publications by Dr. Wright

Selected Journal Articles

Ziemian S, Wright T, Otero M, van der Meulen M. Early inhibition of subchondral bone remodeling slows load-induced post-traumatic osteoarthritis development in mice. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, 36:2027-2038, 2021.

Romero J, Wach A, Silberberg S, Chiu YF, Westrich G, Wright TM, Padgett DE. 2020 Otto Aufranc Award: Mal-seating of modular dual mobility liners. Bone Joint Journal. 102-B(7_Supple_B):20-26, 2020.

Triantafyllopoulos GK, Elpers ME, Burket JC, Esposito CI, Padgett DE, Wright TM. The Otto Aufranc Award: Large Heads Do Not Increase Damage at the Head-neck Taper of Metal-on-polyethylene Total Hip Arthroplasties. Clin Orthop Relat Res 474:330-8, 2016

Esposito C, Wright T, Mayman D, Padgett D. Cup position alone does not predict risk of dislocation after hip arthroplasty. J Arthroplasty, 30:109-13, 2015.

Ko FC, Dragomir C, Plumb DA, Goldring SR, Wright TM, Goldring MB, van der Meulen MCH. In vivo cyclic compression causes cartilage degeneration and subchondral bone changes in mouse tibiae. Arthritis and Rheumatism, 65:1569-78, 2013.

Fritton JC, Myers ER, Wright TM, van der Meulen MCH. Loading induces site specific increases in mineral content assessed by microcomputed tomography of the mouse tibia. Bone 36:1030-8, 2005.

Shon W, Baldini T, Peterson MGP, Wright T, Salvati E. Impingement in Total Hip Arthroplasty: A Study of Re-trieved Acetabular Components. J Arthroplasty 20:427-35, 2005.

AL Boskey, TM Wright, RD Blank. Collagen and bone strength
Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 14, 330-335, 1999.

Bartel DL, Bicknell VL, Wright TM. The Effect of Conformity, Thickness, and Material on Stresses in UHMWPE Components for Total Joint Replacement. J Bone Joint Surgery 68A:1041-1051, 1986.

Hood RW, Wright TM, Burstein AH. Retrieval Analysis of Total Knee Prostheses: A Method and Its Application to Forty Eight Total Condylar Prostheses. J Biomed Mat Res 17: 829 842, 1983.

For more publications, please see the PubMed listing.

Patient Education

Selected Books/Chapters

Sculco PK, Wright T, Malahias MA, Gu A, Bostrom M, Haddad F, Jerabek S, Bolognesi M, Fehring T, Gonzalez DellaValle A, Jiranek W, Walter W, Paprosky W, Garbuz D, Sculco T. The Diagnosis and Treatment of Acetabular Bone Loss in Revision Hip Arthroplasty: An International Consensus Symposium. HSS J. 18:8-41, 2022.

Wright TM, Baral E, Padgett DE. Retrieval—Hip and Knee. In Orthopaedic Knowledge Update Hip and Knee Re-construction 6, AAOS, Rosemont, IL, 2021.

Wright TM and Quevedo Gonzalez F: Knee Biomechanics and Design. In The Adult Knee, 2nd Ed (ed by H Rubash), Lippicott Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore, MD, 2020.

Garvin K and Wright T, eds: Strategies to Improve Total Knee Arthroplasty. JAAOS Suppl, 25 Suppl 1:S1-S3, 2017.

Wright TM and Maher SA. Potential Mechanism of PTA: Alterations in Joint Loading. In Post-Traumatic Arthritis: Pathogenesis, Diagnosis, and Treatment (ed by S Olson and F Guilak) pp 221-233, Springer, New York, 2015.

Wright TM, Imhauser CW, Komistek R, Sharma A: Biomechanics and Kinematics of TKA. In Adult Knee Reconstruction, pp 41-54, AAOS, Rosemont, IL, 2010.

Goldring S and Wright T: Frontiers in Osteoarthritis. HSS Journal 8, 2008.

Wright TM and Goodman SB, eds: Implant Wear: The Future of Total Joint Replacement. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Rosemont, IL, 1996.

Burstein AH and Wright TM: Fundamentals of Orthopaedic Biomechanics. Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore, 1994.

Selected Presentations

"A Debate: Has Additive Manufacturing Made a Difference in Clinical Care to Date?" Orthopaedic Implants Section Meeting (W. Mihalko, Chair), ORS Annual Meeting, Tampa, FL: February, 2022.

"Evaluating Implant Failure: Modularity in Modern Total Hip Replacements," R Lane Smith Visiting Professor presentation, Stanford University, Stanford, CA: April, 2019.

"Evaluating Implant Failure: The Trouble with Trunnions," Biedermann Lab for Orthopaedic Research
Invited Speaker, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA: May, 2018.

"The Contribution of Knee Biomechanics to Orthopaedics," Keynote Address, CAOS 3rd National Meeting: Orthopaedic Surgery (J. Victor, Chair), Ghent, Belgium: January, 2017.

"Orthopaedic Biomaterials: Wear and Tribocorrosion Considerations," Orthopaedic Grand Rounds, University of Miami, Miami, FL: October, 2015.

"Alternative Bearings for Joint Arthroplasty," Keynote Presentation at the 4th Annual CMSR Symposium, Center for Musculoskeletal Research, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY: September, 2014

"Improving the Performance of Total Elbow Arthroplasty" and "Alternative Bearing Materials for Joint Arthroplasty," John W. Frymoyer Lecture Series, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT: September, 2014.

"Optimal Prosthetic Design for the Knee," Sino-HSS Workshop on Total Knee Arthroplasty (T. Sculco and Y. Wang, Co-Chairs: Beijing, China, October 2010

"Implant Design Lessons from Retrieval Analysis of Knee Replacements," Department of Orthopaedics, Jilin University: Changchun, China, November, 2010

"Biomechanics and Wear," Maine Orthopaedic Review Course, Waterville, MN: l989 - present

Industry Relationships

Industry Relationships

One of the goals of HSS is to advance the science of orthopedic surgery, rheumatology, and related disciplines for the benefit of patients. Research staff at HSS may collaborate with outside companies for education, research and medical advances. HSS supports this collaboration in order to foster medical breakthroughs; however, HSS also believes that these collaborations must be disclosed.

As part of the disclosure process, this website lists Research staff collaborations with outside companies if the Research staff member received any payment during the prior year or expects to receive any payment in the next year. The disclosures are based on information provided by the Research staff and other sources and are updated regularly. Current ownership interests and leadership positions are also listed. Further information may be available on individual company websites.

Below are the healthcare industry relationships reported by Dr. Wright as of April 10, 2023.

  • American Joint Replacement Registry - Data Committee Member
  • Exactech, Inc. - Royalties
  • Lima Corporate - Research Support; Royalties
  • OREF - Board or Committee Member

By disclosing the collaborations of HSS Research staff with industry on this website, HSS and its Research staff make this information available to patients and the public, thus creating a transparent environment for those who are interested in this information. Further, the HSS Conflicts of Interest Policy does not permit payment of royalties on products developed by him/her that are used on patients at HSS.

Feel free to ask the Research staff member about their relationship(s).

Dr. Wright in the News