A large part of our knowledge about biology is based on the results of cell culture experiments. Yet, cell cultures are rather random and uncontrolled systems where the cells are in a completely artificial environment and receive many unspecific signals. Through micro- and nanotechnology approaches we try to develop intelligent three-dimensional cell cultures, which consist of multiple cell types and active elements that can deliver biochemical signals locally with an external electronic control. For example, we are able to control the kinetics of DNA release at microelectrodes to facilitate single-cell transfection. In addition, we can also release whole cell layers using electrical stimuli opening up new possibilities in tissue- or more specifically in cell-sheet engineering. Cell-sheets consisting of different cell types can be sandwiched together with biodegradable hydrogels. This enables the study of stem cell differentiation and angiogenesis in a controlled complex three-dimensional environment. Using this approach we hope to be able to overcome existing problems and generate large tissue constructs in vitro that can be used to retain the function of damaged organs in vivo.
Electronically Controlled Cell-Sheet Engineering and Micropatterning
2D/3D Microstructured Polymer Films and Matrices for Tissue Engineering
Cell growth and Stem Cell Differentiation in 3D Cell Stacks
Electronic Drug Delivery
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