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AUTHOR Barceló, Xavier and Eichholz, Kian F. and Gonçalves, Inês F. and Garcia, Orquidea and Kelly, Daniel J.
Title Bioprinting of structurally organized meniscal tissue within anisotropic melt electrowritten scaffolds [Abstract]
Year 2023
Journal/Proceedings Acta Biomaterialia
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Abstract
The meniscus is characterised by an anisotropic collagen fibre network which is integral to its biomechanical functionality. The engineering of structurally organized meniscal grafts that mimic the anisotropy of the native tissue remains a significant challenge. In this study, inkjet bioprinting was used to deposit a cell-laden bioink into additively manufactured scaffolds of differing architectures to engineer fibrocartilage grafts with user defined collagen architectures. Polymeric scaffolds consisting of guiding fibre networks with varying aspect ratios (1:1; 1:4; 1:16) were produced using either fused deposition modelling (FDM) or melt electrowriting (MEW), resulting in scaffolds with different internal architectures and fibre diameters. Scaffold architecture was found to influence the spatial organization of the collagen network laid down by the jetted cells, with higher aspect ratios (1:4 and 1:16) supporting the formation of structurally anisotropic tissues. The MEW scaffolds supported the development of a fibrocartilaginous tissue with compressive mechanical properties similar to that of native meniscus, while the anisotropic tensile properties of these constructs could be tuned by altering the fibre network aspect ratio. This MEW framework was then used to generate scaffolds with spatially distinct fibre patterns, which in turn supported the development of heterogenous tissues consisting of isotropic and anisotropic collagen networks. Such bioprinted tissues could potentially form the basis of new treatment options for damaged and diseased meniscal tissue. Statement of significance This study describes a multiple tool biofabrication strategy which enables the engineering of spatially organized fibrocartilage tissues. The architecture of MEW scaffolds can be tailored to not only modulate the directionality of the collagen fibres laid down by cells, but also to tune the anisotropic tensile mechanical properties of the resulting constructs, thereby enabling the engineering of biomimetic meniscal-like tissues. Furthermore, the inherent flexibility of MEW enables the development of zonally defined and potentially patient-specific implants.
AUTHOR Nothdurfter, Daniel and Ploner, Christian and Coraça-Huber, Débora C. and Wilflingseder, Doris and Müller, Thomas and Hermann, Martin and Hagenbuchner, Judith and Ausserlechner, Michael J.
Title 3D bioprinted, vascularized neuroblastoma tumor environment in fluidic chip devices for precision medicine drug testing [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Neuroblastoma is an extracranial solid tumor which develops in early childhood and still has a poor prognosis. One strategy to increase cure rates is the identification of patient-specific drug responses in tissue models that mimic the interaction between patient cancer cells and tumor environment. We therefore developed a perfused and micro-vascularized tumor-environment model that is directly bioprinted into custom-manufactured fluidic chips. A gelatin-methacrylate/fibrin-based matrix containing multiple cell types mimics the tumor-microenvironment that promotes spontaneous micro-vessel formation by embedded endothelial cells. We demonstrate that both, adipocyte- and iPSC-derived mesenchymal stem cells can guide this process. Bioprinted channels are coated with endothelial cells post printing to form a dense vessel - tissue barrier. The tissue model thereby mimics structure and function of human soft tissue with endothelial cell-coated larger vessels for perfusion and micro-vessel networks within the hydrogel-matrix. Patient-derived neuroblastoma spheroids are added to the matrix during the printing process and grown for more than two weeks. We demonstrate that micro-vessels are attracted by and grow into tumor spheroids and that neuroblastoma cells invade the tumor-environment as soon as the spheroids disrupt. In summary, we describe the first bioprinted, micro-vascularized neuroblastoma – tumor-environment model directly printed into fluidic chips and a novel medium-throughput biofabrication platform suitable for studying tumor angiogenesis and metastasis in precision medicine approaches in future.
AUTHOR Dufour, A. and Gallostra, X. Barceló and O'Keeffe, C. and Eichholz, K. and Von Euw, S. and Garcia, O. and Kelly, D. J.
Title Integrating melt electrowriting and inkjet bioprinting for engineering structurally organized articular cartilage [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Biomaterials
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Successful cartilage engineering requires the generation of biological grafts mimicking the structure, composition and mechanical behaviour of the native tissue. Here melt electrowriting (MEW) was used to produce arrays of polymeric structures whose function was to orient the growth of cellular aggregates spontaneously generated within these structures, and to provide tensile reinforcement to the resulting tissues. Inkjet printing was used to deposit defined numbers of cells into MEW structures, which self-assembled into an organized array of spheroids within hours, ultimately generating a hybrid tissue that was hyaline-like in composition. Structurally, the engineered cartilage mimicked the histotypical organization observed in skeletally immature synovial joints. This biofabrication framework was then used to generate scaled-up (50 mm × 50 mm) cartilage implants containing over 3,500 cellular aggregates in under 15 min. After 8 weeks in culture, a 50-fold increase in the compressive stiffness of these MEW reinforced tissues were observed, while the tensile properties were still dominated by the polymer network, resulting in a composite construct demonstrating tension-compression nonlinearity mimetic of the native tissue. Helium ion microscopy further demonstrated the development of an arcading collagen network within the engineered tissue. This hybrid bioprinting strategy provides a versatile and scalable approach to engineer cartilage biomimetic grafts for biological joint resurfacing.
AUTHOR D'Agostino, Stefania and Rimann, Markus and Gamba, Piergiorgio and Perilongo, Giorgio and Pozzobon, Michela and Raghunath, Michael
Title Macromolecular crowding tuned extracellular matrix deposition in a bioprinted human rhabdomyosarcoma model [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Bioprinting
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The role of the extracellular matrix (ECM) in tumor recurrence and metastasis has been gaining attention. Indeed, not only cellular, but also structural proteins influence migratory and invasive capacity of tumor cells, including growth and resistance to drugs. Therefore, new in vitro tumor models that entail improved ECM formation and deposition are needed. Here, we are developed three-dimensional (3D) models of pediatric soft tissue sarcoma (Rhabdomyosarcoma [RMS]) with the two major subgroups, the embryonal (ERMS) and the alveolar (ARMS) form. We applied macromolecular crowding (MMC) technology to monolayer cultures, spheroids, and 3D bioprinted constructs. In all culture models, exposure to MMC significantly increased ECM deposition. Interestingly, bioprinted constructs showed a collagen and fibronectin matrix architecture that was comparable to that of tumor xenografts. Furthermore, the bioprinted model not only showed tumor cell growth inside the structure but also displayed cell clusters leaving the edges of the bioprinted construct, probably emulating a metastatic mechanism. ARMS and ERMS cells reacted differently in the bioprinted structure. Indeed, the characteristic metastatic behavior was much more pronounced in the more aggressive ARMS subtype. This promising approach opens new avenues for studying RMS microenvironment and creating a platform for cancer drug testing including the native tumor ECM.
AUTHOR Habelt, Bettina and Wirth, Christopher and Afanasenkau, Dzmitry and Mihaylova, Lyudmila and Winter, Christine and Arvaneh, Mahnaz and Minev, Ivan R. and Bernhardt, Nadine
Title A Multimodal Neuroprosthetic Interface to Record, Modulate and Classify Electrophysiological Biomarkers Relevant to Neuropsychiatric Disorders [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Frontiers in Bioengineering and Biotechnology
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Most mental disorders, such as addictive diseases or schizophrenia, are characterized by impaired cognitive function and behavior control originating from disturbances within prefrontal neural networks. Their often chronic reoccurring nature and the lack of efficient therapies necessitate the development of new treatment strategies. Brain-computer interfaces, equipped with multiple sensing and stimulation abilities, offer a new toolbox whose suitability for diagnosis and therapy of mental disorders has not yet been explored. This study, therefore, aimed to develop a biocompatible and multimodal neuroprosthesis to measure and modulate prefrontal neurophysiological features of neuropsychiatric symptoms. We used a 3D-printing technology to rapidly prototype customized bioelectronic implants through robot-controlled deposition of soft silicones and a conductive platinum ink. We implanted the device epidurally above the medial prefrontal cortex of rats and obtained auditory event-related brain potentials in treatment-naïve animals, after alcohol administration and following neuromodulation through implant-driven electrical brain stimulation and cortical delivery of the anti-relapse medication naltrexone. Towards smart neuroprosthetic interfaces, we furthermore developed machine learning algorithms to autonomously classify treatment effects within the neural recordings. The neuroprosthesis successfully captured neural activity patterns reflecting intact stimulus processing and alcohol-induced neural depression. Moreover, implant-driven electrical and pharmacological stimulation enabled successful enhancement of neural activity. A machine learning approach based on stepwise linear discriminant analysis was able to deal with sparsity in the data and distinguished treatments with high accuracy. Our work demonstrates the feasibility of multimodal bioelectronic systems to monitor, modulate and identify healthy and affected brain states with potential use in a personalized and optimized therapy of neuropsychiatric disorders.
AUTHOR Ng, Wei Long and Ayi, Teck Choon and Liu, Yi-Chun and Sing, Swee Leong and Yeong, Wai Yee and Tan, Boon-Huan
Title Fabrication and Characterization of 3D Bioprinted Triple-layered Human Alveolar Lung Models [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings International journal of bioprinting
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The global prevalence of respiratory diseases caused by infectious pathogens has resulted in an increased demand for realistic in-vitro alveolar lung models to serve as suitable disease models. This demand has resulted in the fabrication of numerous two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) in-vitro alveolar lung models. The ability to fabricate these 3D in-vitro alveolar lung models in an automated manner with high repeatability and reliability is important for potential scalable production. In this study, we reported the fabrication of human triple-layered alveolar lung models comprising of human lung epithelial cells, human endothelial cells, and human lung fibroblasts using the drop-on-demand (DOD) 3D bioprinting technique. The polyvinylpyrrolidone-based bio-inks and the use of a 300 mm nozzle diameter improved the repeatability of the bioprinting process by achieving consistent cell output over time using different human alveolar lung cells. The 3D bioprinted human triple-layered alveolar lung models were able to maintain cell viability with relative similar proliferation profile over time as compared to non-printed cells. This DOD 3D bioprinting platform offers an attractive tool for highly repeatable and scalable fabrication of 3D in-vitro human alveolar lung models.
AUTHOR Alave Reyes-Furrer, Angela and De Andrade, Sonia and Bachmann, Dominic and Jeker, Heidi and Steinmann, Martin and Accart, Nathalie and Dunbar, Andrew and Rausch, Martin and Bono, Epifania and Rimann, Markus and Keller, Hansjoerg
Title Matrigel 3D bioprinting of contractile human skeletal muscle models recapitulating exercise and pharmacological responses [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Communications Biology
Reftype Alave Reyes-Furrer2021
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Abstract
A key to enhance the low translatability of preclinical drug discovery are in vitro human three-dimensional (3D) microphysiological systems (MPS). Here, we show a new method for automated engineering of 3D human skeletal muscle models in microplates and functional compound screening to address the lack of muscle wasting disease medication. To this end, we adapted our recently described 24-well plate 3D bioprinting platform with a printhead cooling system to allow microvalve-based drop-on-demand printing of cell-laden Matrigel containing primary human muscle precursor cells. Mini skeletal muscle models develop within a week exhibiting contractile, striated myofibers aligned between two attachment posts. As an in vitro exercise model, repeated high impact stimulation of contractions for 3 h by a custom-made electrical pulse stimulation (EPS) system for 24-well plates induced interleukin-6 myokine expression and Akt hypertrophy pathway activation. Furthermore, the known muscle stimulators caffeine and Tirasemtiv acutely increase EPS-induced contractile force of the models. This validated new human muscle MPS will benefit development of drugs against muscle wasting diseases. Moreover, our Matrigel 3D bioprinting platform will allow engineering of non-self-organizing complex human 3D MPS.
AUTHOR Madiedo-Podvrsan, Sabrina and Belaïdi, Jean-Philippe and Desbouis, Stephanie and Simonetti, Lucie and Ben-Khalifa, Youcef and Soeur, Jérémie and Rielland, Maïté
Title Utilization of patterned bioprinting for heterogeneous and physiologically representative reconstructed epidermal skin models [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Scientific Reports
Reftype Madiedo-Podvrsan2021
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Abstract
Organotypic skin tissue models have decades of use for basic research applications, the treatment of burns, and for efficacy/safety evaluation studies. The complex and heterogeneous nature of native human skin however creates difficulties for the construction of physiologically comparable organotypic models. Within the present study, we utilized bioprinting technology for the controlled deposition of separate keratinocyte subpopulations to create a reconstructed epidermis with two distinct halves in a single insert, each comprised of a different keratinocyte sub-population, in order to better model heterogonous skin and reduce inter-sample variability. As an initial proof-of-concept, we created a patterned epidermal skin model using GPF positive and negative keratinocyte subpopulations, both printed into 2 halves of a reconstructed skin insert, demonstrating the feasibility of this approach. We then demonstrated the physiological relevance of this bioprinting technique by generating a heterogeneous model comprised of dual keratinocyte population with either normal or low filaggrin expression. The resultant model exhibited a well-organized epidermal structure with each half possessing the phenotypic characteristics of its constituent cells, indicative of a successful and stable tissue reconstruction. This patterned skin model aims to mimic the edge of lesions as seen in atopic dermatitis or ichthyosis vulgaris, while the use of two populations within a single insert allows for paired statistics in evaluation studies, likely increasing study statistical power and reducing the number of models required per study. This is the first report of human patterned epidermal model using a predefined bioprinted designs, and demonstrates the relevance of bioprinting to faithfully reproduce human skin microanatomy.
AUTHOR Afanasenkau, Dzmitry and Kalinina, Daria and Lyakhovetskii, Vsevolod and Tondera, Christoph and Gorsky, Oleg and Moosavi, Seyyed and Pavlova, Natalia and Merkulyeva, Natalia and Kalueff, Allan V. and Minev, Ivan R. and Musienko, Pavel
Title Rapid prototyping of soft bioelectronic implants for use as neuromuscular interfaces [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings Nature Biomedical Engineering
Reftype Afanasenkau2020
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Abstract
Neuromuscular interfaces are required to translate bioelectronic technologies for application in clinical medicine. Here, by leveraging the robotically controlled ink-jet deposition of low-viscosity conductive inks, extrusion of insulating silicone pastes and in situ activation of electrode surfaces via cold-air plasma, we show that soft biocompatible materials can be rapidly printed for the on-demand prototyping of customized electrode arrays well adjusted to specific anatomical environments, functions and experimental models. We also show, with the monitoring and activation of neuronal pathways in the brain, spinal cord and neuromuscular system of cats, rats and zebrafish, that the printed bioelectronic interfaces allow for long-term integration and functional stability. This technology might enable personalized bioelectronics for neuroprosthetic applications.
AUTHOR Daly, Andrew C. and Kelly, Daniel J.
Title Biofabrication of spatially organised tissues by directing the growth of cellular spheroids within 3D printed polymeric microchambers [Abstract]
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings Biomaterials
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Successful tissue engineering requires the generation of human scale implants that mimic the structure, composition and mechanical properties of native tissues. Here, we report a novel biofabrication strategy that enables the engineering of structurally organised tissues by guiding the growth of cellular spheroids within arrays of 3D printed polymeric microchambers. With the goal of engineering stratified articular cartilage, inkjet bioprinting was used to deposit defined numbers of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) and chondrocytes into pre-printed microchambers. These jetted cell suspensions rapidly underwent condensation within the hydrophobic microchambers, leading to the formation of organised arrays of cellular spheroids. The microchambers were also designed to provide boundary conditions to these spheroids, guiding their growth and eventual fusion, leading to the development of stratified cartilage tissue with a depth-dependant collagen fiber architecture that mimicked the structure of native articular cartilage. Furthermore, the composition and biomechanical properties of the bioprinted cartilage was also comparable to the native tissue. Using multi-tool biofabrication, we were also able to engineer anatomically accurate, human scale, osteochondral templates by printing this microchamber system on top of a hypertrophic cartilage region designed to support endochondral bone formation and then maintaining the entire construct in long-term bioreactor culture to enhance tissue development. This bioprinting strategy provides a versatile and scalable approach to engineer structurally organised cartilage tissues for joint resurfacing applications.
AUTHOR Derr, Kristy and Zou, Jinyun and Luo, Keren and Song, Min Jae and Sittampalam, G. Sitta and Zhou, Chao and Michael, Samuel and Ferrer, Marc and Derr, Paige
Title Fully 3D Bioprinted Skin Equivalent Constructs with Validated Morphology and Barrier Function [Abstract]
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings Tissue Engineering Part C: Methods
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Development of high throughput, reproducible, three-dimensional bioprinted skin equivalents that are morphologically and functionally comparable to native skin tissue is advancing research in skin diseases, and providing a physiologically relevant platform for the development of therapeutics, transplants for regenerative medicine, and testing of skin products like cosmetics. Current protocols for the production of engineered skin rafts are limited in their ability to control three dimensional geometry of the structure and contraction leading to variability of skin function between constructs. Here we describe a method for the biofabrication of skin equivalents that are fully bioprinted using an open market bioprinter, made with commercially available primary cells and natural hydrogels. The unique hydrogel formulation allows for the production of a human-like skin equivalent with minimal lateral tissue contraction in a multiwell plate format, thus making them suitable for high throughput bioprinting in a single print with fast print and relatively short incubation times. The morphology and barrier function of the fully three-dimensional bioprinted skin equivalents are validated by immunohistochemistry staining, optical coherence tomography, and permeation assays.
AUTHOR Laternser, Sandra and Keller, Hansjoerg and Leupin, Olivier and Rausch, Martin and Graf-Hausner, Ursula and Rimann, Markus
Title A Novel Microplate 3D Bioprinting Platform for the Engineering of Muscle and Tendon Tissues [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings SLAS TECHNOLOGY: Translating Life Sciences Innovation
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Two-dimensional (2D) cell cultures do not reflect the in vivo situation, and thus it is important to develop predictive three-dimensional (3D) in vitro models with enhanced reliability and robustness for drug screening applications. Treatments against muscle-related diseases are becoming more prominent due to the growth of the aging population worldwide. In this study, we describe a novel drug screening platform with automated production of 3D musculoskeletal-tendon-like tissues. With 3D bioprinting, alternating layers of photo-polymerized gelatin-methacryloyl-based bioink and cell suspension tissue models were produced in a dumbbell shape onto novel postholder cell culture inserts in 24-well plates. Monocultures of human primary skeletal muscle cells and rat tenocytes were printed around and between the posts. The cells showed high viability in culture and good tissue differentiation, based on marker gene and protein expressions. Different printing patterns of bioink and cells were explored and calcium signaling with Fluo4-loaded cells while electrically stimulated was shown. Finally, controlled co-printing of tenocytes and myoblasts around and between the posts, respectively, was demonstrated followed by co-culture and co-differentiation. This screening platform combining 3D bioprinting with a novel microplate represents a promising tool to address musculoskeletal diseases.
AUTHOR Roopesh, Ramesh Pai and Muthusamy, Senthilkumar and Velayudhan, Shiny and Sabareeswaran, Arumugham and Anil Kumar, Pallickaveedu RajanAsari
Title High-throughput production of liver parenchymal microtissues and enrichment of organ-specific functions in gelatin methacrylamide microenvironment [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Biotechnology and Bioengineering
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Abstract Liver parenchymal microtissues (LPMTs) are three-dimensional (3D) aggregates of hepatocytes that recapitulate in vivo-like cellular assembly. They are considered as a valuable model to study drug metabolism, disease biology, and serve as ideal building blocks for liver tissue engineering. However, their integration into the mainstream drug screening process has been hindered due to the lack of simple, rapid techniques to produce a large number of uniform microtissues and preserve their structural–functional integrity over the long term. Here, we present a high-throughput methodology to produce LPMTs in a novel, economic, and reusable Hanging-drop Culture Chamber (HdCC). A drop-on-demand bioprinting approach was optimized to generate droplets of HepG2 cell suspension on a polyethylene terephthalate substrate. The substrates carrying droplets were placed inside a novel HdCC and incubated to obtain 1600 LPMTs having a size of 200–300 μm. Tissue size, cell viability, cellular arrangement and polarity, and insulin-mediated glucose uptake by LPMTs were analyzed. The microtissues were viable and exhibited an active response to insulin stimulation. Cells within the microtissue reorganized to form hepatic plate-like structures and expressed apical (Multidrug Resistance Protein 2 [MRP2]) and epithelial (Zonula Occludens 1 [ZO1]) markers. Further to maintain the structural integrity and enhance the functional capabilities, LPMTs were sandwiched within gelatin methacrylamide (GelMA) hydrogel and the liver-specific functions were monitored for 2 weeks. The results showed that the 3D structure of LPMTs in GelMA sandwich was maintained while the albumin secretion, urea synthesis, and cytochrome P450 activity were enhanced compared with LPMTs in suspension. In conclusion, this study presents a novel culture chamber for mass production of microtissues and a method for enhancing organ-specific functions of LPMTs in vitro.
AUTHOR Dusserre, Nathalie and Stachowicz, Marie-Laure and Medina, Chantal and Henri, Baptiste and Fricain, Jean-Christophe and Paris, François and Oliveira, Hugo
Title Microvalve bioprinting as a biofabrication tool to decipher tumor and endothelial cell crosstalk: Application to a simplified glioblastoma model [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Bioprinting
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Bioprinting technologies are powerful new bioengineering tools that can spatially reproduce multiple microenvironmental cues in a highly controlled, tunable, and precise manner. In this study, microvalve bioprinting technology was successfully used to print in close proximity endothelial and tumor cells at higher concentrations than previously thought possible, while preserving their viability. We propose that the resulting multicellular models, bioprinted in a controlled extracellular matrix microenvironment, are well-suited to study endothelial and cancer cell crosstalk within a cancer niche. As proof of concept, microvalve bioprinting was applied to the bioengineering of a simplified glioblastoma model in which biological processes involved in tumor expansion, such as tumor cell invasion patterns, cell proliferation, and senescence could be easily visualized and quantified. In this model, U251 glioblastoma cells and primary human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) exhibited good printability and high viability after printing. U251 cells formed physiologically relevant clusters and invasion margins, while HUVECs generated vascular-like networks when primary fibroblasts were added to the model. An oxidative stress mimicking the one encountered within a tumor microenvironment during radiotherapy or genotoxic chemotherapy was shown to both diminish endothelial cells proliferation and to increase their senescence. Results also suggested that stressed glioblastoma cells may alter normal endothelial cell proliferation but not impact their senescence. This data demonstrates the potential of microvalve bioprinting to fabricate in vitro models that can help decipher endothelial and tumor cell crosstalk, within controlled and modulable microenvironments, and can then be used to address critical questions in the context of cancer recurrence.
AUTHOR Ng, Wei Long and Qi, Jovina Tan Zhi and Yeong, Wai Yee and Naing, May Win
Title Proof-of-concept: 3D bioprinting of pigmented human skin constructs [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Three-dimensional (3D) pigmented human skin constructs have been fabricated using a 3D bioprinting approach. The 3D pigmented human skin constructs are obtained from using three different types of skin cells (keratinocytes, melanocytes and fibroblasts from three different skin donors) and they exhibit similar constitutive pigmentation (pale pigmentation) as the skin donors. A two-step drop-on-demand bioprinting strategy facilitates the deposition of cell droplets to emulate the epidermal melanin units (pre-defined patterning of keratinocytes and melanocytes at the desired positions) and manipulation of the microenvironment to fabricate 3D biomimetic hierarchical porous structures found in native skin tissue. The 3D bioprinted pigmented skin constructs are compared to the pigmented skin constructs fabricated by conventional a manual-casting approach; in-depth characterization of both the 3D pigmented skin constructs has indicated that the 3D bioprinted skin constructs have a higher degree of resemblance to native skin tissue in term of the presence of well-developed stratified epidermal layers and the presence of a continuous layer of basement membrane proteins as compared to the manually-cast samples. The 3D bioprinting approach facilitates the development of 3D in vitro pigmented human skin constructs for potential toxicology testing and fundamental cell biology research.
AUTHOR Azim, N. and Hart, C. and Sommerhage, F. and Aubin, M. and Hickman, J. J. and Rajaraman, S.
Title Precision Plating of Human Electrogenic Cells on Microelectrodes Enhanced With Precision Electrodeposited Nano-Porous Platinum for Cell-Based Biosensing Applications [Abstract]
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings Journal of Microelectromechanical Systems
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Abstract
Microelectrode Arrays are established platforms for biosensing applications; however, limitations in electrode impedance and cell-electrode coupling still exist. In this paper, the SNR of 25 μm diameter gold (Au) microelectrodes was improved by decreasing the impedance with precision electrodeposition. SEM determined that N-P Pt. microelectrodes had nanoporous structures that filled the insulation cylinders. EIS, CV, and RMS noise measurements concluded that the optimized electrodeposition of N-P Pt. led to a lowered impedance of 18.36 kΩ ± 2.6 kΩ at 1 kHz, a larger double layer capacitance of 73 nF, and lowered RMS noise of 2.08±0.16 μV as compared to the values for Au of 159 kΩ ± 28 kΩ at 1 kHz, 17nF, and 3.14 ± 0.42 μV, respectively. Human motoneurons and human cardiomyocytes were cultured on N-P Pt. devices to assess their biocompatibility and signal quality. In order to improve the cell-electrode coupling, a precision plating technique was used. Both cell types were electrically active on devices for up to 10 weeks, demonstrated improved SNR, and expected responses to precision chemical and electrical stimulation. The modification of Au microelectrodes with nanomaterials in combination with precision culturing of human cell types provides cost effective, highly sensitive, well coupled and relevant biosensing platforms for medical and pharmaceutical research.
AUTHOR Schroeder, Thomas B. H. and Guha, Anirvan and Lamoureux, Aaron and VanRenterghem, Gloria and Sept, David and Shtein, Max and Yang, Jerry and Mayer, Michael
Title An electric-eel-inspired soft power source from stacked hydrogels [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Nature
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Abstract
Progress towards the integration of technology into livingo ganisms requires electrical power sources that are biocompatible, mechanically flexible, and able to harness the chemical energy available inside biological systems. Conventional batteries were not designed with these criteria in mind. The electric organ of the knifefish Electrophorus electricus (commonly known as the electric eel) is, however, an example of an electrical power source that operates within biological constraints while featuring power characteristics that include peak potential differences of 600 volts and currents of 1 ampere1,2. Here we introduce an electric eel-inspired power concept that uses gradients of ions between miniature polyacrylamide hydrogel compartments bounded by a repeating sequence of cation- and anion-selective hydrogel membranes. The system uses a scalable stacking or folding geometry that generates 110 volts at open circuit or 27 milliwatts per square metre per gel cell upon simultaneous, self-registered mechanical contact activation of thousands of gel compartments in series while circumventing power dissipation before contact. Unlike typical batteries, these systems are soft, flexible, transparent, and potentially biocompatible. These characteristics suggest that artificial electric organs could be used to power next-generation implant materials such as pacemakers, implantable sensors, or prosthetic devices in hybrids of living and non-living systems3–6.�
AUTHOR Cernencu, Alexandra I. and Vlasceanu, George M. and Serafim, Andrada and Pircalabioru, Gratiela and Ionita, Mariana
Title 3D double-reinforced graphene oxide – nanocellulose biomaterial inks for tissue engineered constructs [Abstract]
Year 2023
Journal/Proceedings RSC Adv.
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Abstract
The advent of improved fabrication technologies{,} particularly 3D printing{,} has enabled the engineering of bone tissue for patient-specific healing and the fabrication of in vitro tissue models for ex vivo testing. However{,} inks made from natural polymers often fall short in terms of mechanical strength{,} stability{,} and the induction of osteogenesis. Our research focused on developing novel printable formulations using a gelatin/pectin polymeric matrix that integrate synergistic reinforcement components i.e. graphene oxide (GO) and oxidized nanocellulose fibers (CNF). Using 3D printing technology and the aforementioned biomaterial composite inks{,} bone-like scaffolds were created. To simulate critical-sized flaws and demonstrate scaffold fidelity{,} 3D scaffolds were successfully printed using formulations with varied GO concentrations (0.25{,} 0.5{,} and 1% wt with respect to polymer content). The addition of GO to hydrogel inks enhanced not only the compressive modulus but also the printability and scaffold fidelity compared to the pure colloid-gelatin/pectin system. Due to its strong potential for 3D bioprinting{,} the sample containing 0.5% GO is shown to have the greatest perspectives for bone tissue models and tissue engineering applications.
AUTHOR Estermann, Manuela and Coelho, Ricardo and Jacob, Francis and Huang, Yen-Lin and Liang, Ching-Yeu and Faia-Torres, Ana Bela and Septiadi, Dedy and Drasler, Barbara and Karakocak, Bedia Begum and Dijkhoff, Irini Magdelina and Petri-Fink, Alke and Heinzelmann-Schwarz, Viola and Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara
Title A 3D multi-cellular tissue model of the human omentum to study the formation of ovarian cancer metastasis [Abstract]
Year 2023
Journal/Proceedings Biomaterials
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Abstract
Reliable and predictive experimental models are urgently needed to study metastatic mechanisms of ovarian cancer cells in the omentum. Although models for ovarian cancer cell adhesion and invasion were previously investigated, the lack of certain omental cell types, which influence the metastatic behavior of cancer cells, limits the application of these tissue models. Here, we describe a 3D multi-cellular human omentum tissue model, which considers the spatial arrangement of five omental cell types. Reproducible tissue models were fabricated combining permeable cell culture inserts and bioprinting technology to mimic metastatic processes of immortalized and patient-derived ovarian cancer cells. The implementation of an endothelial barrier further allowed studying the interaction between cancer and endothelial cells during hematogenous dissemination and the impact of chemotherapeutic drugs. This proof-of-concept study may serve as a platform for patient-specific investigations in personalized oncology in the future.
AUTHOR Silvestri, Alessandro and Vázquez-Díaz, Silvia and Misia, Giuseppe and Poletti, Fabrizio and López-Domene, Rocío and Pavlov, Valeri and Zanardi, Chiara and Cortajarena, Aitziber L. and Prato, Maurizio
Title An Electroactive and Self-Assembling Bio-Ink, based on Protein-Stabilized Nanoclusters and Graphene, for the Manufacture of Fully Inkjet-Printed Paper-Based Analytical Devices [Abstract]
Year 2023
Journal/Proceedings Small
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Abstract
Abstract Hundreds of new electrochemical sensors are reported in literature every year. However, only a few of them makes it to the market. Manufacturability, or rather the lack of it, is the parameter that dictates if new sensing technologies will remain forever in the laboratory in which they are conceived. Inkjet printing is a low-cost and versatile technique that can facilitate the transfer of nanomaterial-based sensors to the market. Herein, an electroactive and self-assembling inkjet-printable ink based on protein-nanomaterial composites and exfoliated graphene is reported. The consensus tetratricopeptide proteins (CTPRs), used to formulate this ink, are engineered to template and coordinate electroactive metallic nanoclusters (NCs), and to self-assemble upon drying, forming stable films. The authors demonstrate that, by incorporating graphene in the ink formulation, it is possible to dramatically improve the electrocatalytic properties of the ink, obtaining an efficient hybrid material for hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) detection. Using this bio-ink, the authors manufactured disposable and environmentally sustainable electrochemical paper-based analytical devices (ePADs) to detect H2O2, outperforming commercial screen-printed platforms. Furthermore, it is demonstrated that oxidoreductase enzymes can be included in the formulation, to fully inkjet-print enzymatic amperometric biosensors ready to use.
AUTHOR Barceló, Xavier and Garcia, Orquidea and Kelly, Daniel J.
Title Chondroitinase ABC Treatment Improves the Organization and Mechanics of 3D Bioprinted Meniscal Tissue [Abstract]
Year 2023
Journal/Proceedings ACS Biomater. Sci. Eng.
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Abstract
The meniscus is a fibrocartilage tissue that is integral to the correct functioning of the knee joint. The tissue possesses a unique collagen fiber architecture that is integral to its biomechanical functionality. In particular, a network of circumferentially aligned collagen fibers function to bear the high tensile forces generated in the tissue during normal daily activities. The limited regenerative capacity of the meniscus has motivated increased interest in meniscus tissue engineering; however, the in vitro generation of structurally organized meniscal grafts with a collagen architecture mimetic of the native meniscus remains a significant challenge. Here we used melt electrowriting (MEW) to produce scaffolds with defined pore architectures to impose physical boundaries upon cell growth and extracellular matrix production. This enabled the bioprinting of anisotropic tissues with collagen fibers preferentially oriented parallel to the long axis of the scaffold pores. Furthermore, temporally removing glycosaminoglycans (sGAGs) during the early stages of in vitro tissue development using chondroitinase ABC (cABC) was found to positively impact collagen network maturation. Specially we found that temporal depletion of sGAGs is associated with an increase in collagen fiber diameter without any detrimental effect on the development of a meniscal tissue phenotype or subsequent extracellular matrix production. Moreover, temporal cABC treatment supported the development of engineered tissues with superior tensile mechanical properties compared to empty MEW scaffolds. These findings demonstrate the benefit of temporal enzymatic treatments when engineering structurally anisotropic tissues using emerging biofabrication technologies such as MEW and inkjet bioprinting.
AUTHOR Pellegrini, Evelin and Desando, Giovanna and Petretta, Mauro and Cellamare, Antonella and Cristalli, Camilla and Pasello, Michela and Manara, Maria Cristina and Grigolo, Brunella and Scotlandi, Katia
Title A 3D Collagen-Based Bioprinted Model to Study Osteosarcoma Invasiveness and Drug Response [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Polymers
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Abstract
The biological and therapeutic limits of traditional 2D culture models, which only partially mimic the complexity of cancer, have recently emerged. In this study, we used a 3D bioprinting platform to process a collagen-based hydrogel with embedded osteosarcoma (OS) cells. The human OS U-2 OS cell line and its resistant variant (U-2OS/CDDP 1 μg) were considered. The fabrication parameters were optimized to obtain 3D printed constructs with overall morphology and internal microarchitecture that accurately match the theoretical design, in a reproducible and stable process. The biocompatibility of the 3D bioprinting process and the chosen collagen bioink in supporting OS cell viability and metabolism was confirmed through multiple assays at short- (day 3) and long- (day 10) term follow-ups. In addition, we tested how the 3D collagen-based bioink affects the tumor cell invasive capabilities and chemosensitivity to cisplatin (CDDP). Overall, we developed a new 3D culture model of OS cells that is easy to set up, allows reproducible results, and better mirrors malignant features of OS than flat conditions, thus representing a promising tool for drug screening and OS cell biology research.
AUTHOR Pontiggia, Luca and Hengel, Ingmar A.J. Van and Klar, Agnes and Rütsche, Dominic and Nanni, Monica and Scheidegger, Andreas and Figi, Sandro and Reichmann, Ernst and Moehrlen, Ueli and Biedermann, Thomas
Title Bioprinting and plastic compression of large pigmented and vascularized human dermo-epidermal skin substitutes by means of a new robotic platform [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Journal of Tissue Engineering
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Abstract
Extensive availability of engineered autologous dermo-epidermal skin substitutes (DESS) with functional and structural properties of normal human skin represents a goal for the treatment of large skin defects such as severe burns. Recently, a clinical phase I trial with this type of DESS was successfully completed, which included patients own keratinocytes and fibroblasts. Yet, two important features of natural skin were missing: pigmentation and vascularization. The first has important physiological and psychological implications for the patient, the second impacts survival and quality of the graft. Additionally, accurate reproduction of large amounts of patient’s skin in an automated way is essential for upscaling DESS production. Therefore, in the present study, we implemented a new robotic unit (called SkinFactory) for 3D bioprinting of pigmented and pre-vascularized DESS using normal human skin derived fibroblasts, blood- and lymphatic endothelial cells, keratinocytes, and melanocytes. We show the feasibility of our approach by demonstrating the viability of all the cells after printing in vitro, the integrity of the reconstituted capillary network in vivo after transplantation to immunodeficient rats and the anastomosis to the vascular plexus of the host. Our work has to be considered as a proof of concept in view of the implementation of an extended platform, which fully automatize the process of skin substitution: this would be a considerable improvement of the treatment of burn victims and patients with severe skin lesions based on patients own skin derived cells.
AUTHOR Clua-Ferré, Laura and de Chiara, Francesco and Rodríguez-Comas, Júlia and Comelles, Jordi and Martinez, Elena and Godeau, Amelie Luise and García-Alamán, Ainhoa and Gasa, Rosa and Ramón-Azcón, Javier
Title Collagen-Tannic Acid Spheroids for β-Cell Encapsulation Fabricated Using a 3D Bioprinter [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Advanced Materials Technologies
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Abstract
Abstract Type 1 Diabetes results from autoimmune response elicited against β-cell antigens. Nowadays, insulin injections remain the leading therapeutic option. However, injection treatment fails to emulate the highly dynamic insulin release that β-cells provide. 3D cell-laden microspheres have been proposed during the last years as a major platform for bioengineering insulin-secreting constructs for tissue graft implantation and a model for in vitro drug screening platforms. Current microsphere fabrication technologies have several drawbacks: the need for an oil phase containing surfactants, diameter inconsistency of the microspheres, and high time-consuming processes. These technologies have widely used alginate for its rapid gelation, high processability, and low cost. However, its low biocompatible properties do not provide effective cell attachment. This study proposes a high-throughput methodology using a 3D bioprinter that employs an ECM-like microenvironment for effective cell-laden microsphere production to overcome these limitations. Crosslinking the resulting microspheres with tannic acid prevents collagenase degradation and enhances spherical structural consistency while allowing the diffusion of nutrients and oxygen. The approach allows customization of microsphere diameter with extremely low variability. In conclusion, a novel bio-printing procedure is developed to fabricate large amounts of reproducible microspheres capable of secreting insulin in response to extracellular glucose stimuli.
AUTHOR Amirifar, Leyla and Besanjideh, Mohsen and Nasiri, Rohollah and Shamloo, Amir and Nasrollahi, Fatemeh and de Barros, Natan Roberto and Davoodi, Elham and Erdem, Ahmet and Mahmoodi, Mahboobeh and Hosseini, Vahid and Montazerian, Hossein and Jahangiry, Jamileh and Darabi, Mohammad Ali and Haghniaz, Reihaneh and Dokmeci, Mehmet R. and Annabi, Nasim and Ahadian, Samad and Khademhosseini, Ali
Title Droplet-based microfluidics in biomedical applications [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
Droplet-based microfluidic systems have been employed to manipulate discrete fluid volumes with immiscible phases. Creating the fluid droplets at microscale has led to a paradigm shift in mixing, sorting, encapsulation, sensing, and designing high throughput devices for biomedical applications. Droplet microfluidics has opened many opportunities in microparticle synthesis, molecular detection, diagnostics, drug delivery, and cell biology. In the present review, we first introduce standard methods for droplet generation (i.e. passive and active methods) and discuss the latest examples of emulsification and particle synthesis approaches enabled by microfluidic platforms. Then, the applications of droplet-based microfluidics in different biomedical applications are detailed. Finally, a general overview of the latest trends along with the perspectives and future potentials in the field are provided.
AUTHOR Bedell, Matthew L. and Torres, Angelica L. and Hogan, Katie J. and Wang, Ziwen and Wang, Bonnie and Melchiorri, Anthony J. and Grande-Allen, K. Jane and Mikos, Antonios G.
Title Human gelatin-based composite hydrogels for osteochondral tissue engineering and their adaptation into bioinks for extrusion, inkjet, and digital light processing bioprinting [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
The investigation of novel hydrogel systems allows for the study of relationships between biomaterials, cells, and other factors within osteochondral tissue engineering. Three-dimensional (3D) printing is a popular research method that can allow for further interrogation of these questions via the fabrication of 3D hydrogel environments that mimic tissue-specific, complex architectures. However, the adaptation of promising hydrogel biomaterial systems into 3D-printable bioinks remains a challenge. Here, we delineated an approach to that process. First, we characterized a novel methacryloylated gelatin composite hydrogel system and assessed how calcium phosphate and glycosaminoglycan additives upregulated bone- and cartilage-like matrix deposition and certain genetic markers of differentiation within human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs), such as RUNX2 and SOX9. Then, new assays were developed and utilized to study the effects of xanthan gum and nanofibrillated cellulose, which allowed for cohesive fiber deposition, reliable droplet formation, and non-fracturing digital light processing (DLP)-printed constructs within extrusion, inkjet, and DLP techniques, respectively. Finally, these bioinks were used to 3D print constructs containing viable encapsulated hMSCs over a 7 d period, where DLP printed constructs facilitated the highest observed increase in cell number over 7 d (∼2.4×). The results presented here describe the promotion of osteochondral phenotypes via these novel composite hydrogel formulations, establish their ability to bioprint viable, cell-encapsulating constructs using three different 3D printing methods on multiple bioprinters, and document how a library of modular bioink additives affected those physicochemical properties important to printability.
AUTHOR Wang, Ruiqi and Deng, Shuai and Wu, Yuping and Wei, Haiying and Jing, Guangping and Zhang, Bosong and Liu, Fengzhen and Tian, Hui and Chen, Xiongbiao and Tian, Weiming
Title Remodelling 3D printed GelMA-HA corneal scaffolds by cornea stromal cells [Abstract]
Year 2022
Journal/Proceedings Colloid and Interface Science Communications
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Abstract
Engineering scaffolds with a structure mimicking that of native cornea allows for addressing the severe donor shortage for the corneal blindness treatment, which, however, remains challenging. In the light that corneal stromal (CS) cells can play a key role in corneal stroma formation, in this study we incorporated CS cells into three-dimensional (3D) scaffolds printed from hyaluronic acid-modified gelatin-methacrylate (GelMA-HA) scaffolds and characterized the scaffolds in terms of remodeled extracellular matrix (ECM) in vitro. Our results illustrated that the modification of GelMA by HA allowed for 3D printing of corneal scaffolds and further improved the characteristics of primary rabbit-derived corneal stromal cells for remodelling scaffolds. After 60 days, we decellularized the remodeled corneal scaffolds and examined their optical properties; and our results demonstrated that the 3D printed corneal scaffolds provided CS cells with cues that guided them toward the directional and spatial organization and facilitated the ECM remodelling.
AUTHOR Cernencu, Alexandra I. and Lungu, Adriana and Dragusin, Diana M. and Stancu, Izabela C. and Dinescu, Sorina and Balahura, Liliana R. and Mereuta, Paul and Costache, Marieta and Iovu, Horia
Title 3D Bioprinting of Biosynthetic Nanocellulose-Filled GelMA Inks Highly Reliable for Soft Tissue-Oriented Constructs [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Materials
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Abstract
Bioink-formulations based on gelatin methacrylate combined with oxidized cellulose nanofibrils are employed in the present study. The parallel investigation of the printing performance, morphological, swelling, and biological properties of the newly developed hydrogels was performed, with inks prepared using methacrylamide-modified gelatins of fish or bovine origin. Scaffolds with versatile and well-defined internal structure and high shape fidelity were successfully printed due to the high viscosity and shear-thinning behavior of formulated inks and then photo-crosslinked. The biocompatibility of 3D-scaffolds was surveyed using human adipose stem cells (hASCs) and high viability and proliferation rates were obtained when in contact with the biomaterial. Furthermore, bioprinting tests were performed with hASCs embedded in the developed formulations. The results demonstrated that the designed inks are a versatile toolkit for 3D bioprinting and further show the benefits of using fish-derived gelatin for biofabrication.
AUTHOR Otto, I. A. and Capendale, P. E. and Garcia, J. P. and de Ruijter, M. and van Doremalen, R. F. M. and Castilho, M. and Lawson, T. and Grinstaff, M. W. and Breugem, C. C. and Kon, M. and Levato, R. and Malda, J.
Title Biofabrication of a shape-stable auricular structure for the reconstruction of ear deformities [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Materials Today Bio
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Abstract
Bioengineering of the human auricle remains a significant challenge, where the complex and unique shape, the generation of high-quality neocartilage, and shape preservation are key factors. Future regenerative medicine–based approaches for auricular cartilage reconstruction will benefit from a smart combination of various strategies. Our approach to fabrication of an ear-shaped construct uses hybrid bioprinting techniques, a recently identified progenitor cell population, previously validated biomaterials, and a smart scaffold design. Specifically, we generated a 3D-printed polycaprolactone (PCL) scaffold via fused deposition modeling, photocrosslinked a human auricular cartilage progenitor cell–laden gelatin methacryloyl (gelMA) hydrogel within the scaffold, and cultured the bioengineered structure in vitro in chondrogenic media for 30 days. Our results show that the fabrication process maintains the viability and chondrogenic phenotype of the cells, that the compressive properties of the combined PCL and gelMA hybrid auricular constructs are similar to native auricular cartilage, and that biofabricated hybrid auricular structures exhibit excellent shape fidelity compared with the 3D digital model along with deposition of cartilage-like matrix in both peripheral and central areas of the auricular structure. Our strategy affords an anatomically enhanced auricular structure with appropriate mechanical properties, ensures adequate preservation of the auricular shape during a dynamic in vitro culture period, and enables chondrogenically potent progenitor cells to produce abundant cartilage-like matrix throughout the auricular construct. The combination of smart scaffold design with 3D bioprinting and cartilage progenitor cells holds promise for the development of clinically translatable regenerative medicine strategies for auricular reconstruction.
AUTHOR Falcones, Bryan and Sanz-Fraile, Héctor and Marhuenda, Esther and Mendizábal, Irene and Cabrera-Aguilera, Ignacio and Malandain, Nanthilde and Uriarte, Juan J. and Almendros, Isaac and Navajas, Daniel and Weiss, Daniel J. and Farré, Ramon and Otero, Jorge
Title Bioprintable Lung Extracellular Matrix Hydrogel Scaffolds for 3D Culture of Mesenchymal Stromal Cells [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Polymers
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Abstract
Mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC)-based cell therapy in acute respiratory diseases is based on MSC secretion of paracrine factors. Several strategies have proposed to improve this are being explored including pre-conditioning the MSCs prior to administration. We here propose a strategy for improving the therapeutic efficacy of MSCs based on cell preconditioning by growing them in native extracellular matrix (ECM) derived from the lung. To this end, a bioink with tunable stiffness based on decellularized porcine lung ECM hydrogels was developed and characterized. The bioink was suitable for 3D culturing of lung-resident MSCs without the need for additional chemical or physical crosslinking. MSCs showed good viability, and contraction assays showed the existence of cell–matrix interactions in the bioprinted scaffolds. Adhesion capacity and length of the focal adhesions formed were increased for the cells cultured within the lung hydrogel scaffolds. Also, there was more than a 20-fold increase of the expression of the CXCR4 receptor in the 3D-cultured cells compared to the cells cultured in plastic. Secretion of cytokines when cultured in an in vitro model of lung injury showed a decreased secretion of pro-inflammatory mediators for the cells cultured in the 3D scaffolds. Moreover, the morphology of the harvested cells was markedly different with respect to conventionally (2D) cultured MSCs. In conclusion, the developed bioink can be used to bioprint structures aimed to improve preconditioning MSCs for therapeutic purposes.
AUTHOR Burdis, Ross and Chariyev-Prinz, Farhad and Kelly, Daniel J.
Title Bioprinting of biomimetic self-organised cartilage with a supporting joint fixation device [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
Despite sustained efforts, engineering truly biomimetic articular cartilage (AC) via traditional top-down approaches remains challenging. Emerging biofabrication strategies, from 3D bioprinting to scaffold-free approaches that leverage principles of cellular self-organisation, are generating significant interest in the field of cartilage tissue engineering as a means of developing biomimetic tissue analogues in vitro. Although such strategies have advanced the quality of engineered cartilage, recapitulation of many key structural features of native AC, in particular a collagen network mimicking the tissue’s ‘Benninghoff arcade’, remains elusive. Additionally, a complete solution to fixating engineered cartilages in situ within damaged synovial joints has yet to be identified. This study sought to address both of these key challenges by engineering biomimetic AC within a device designed to anchor the tissue within a synovial joint defect. We first designed and fabricated a fixation device capable of anchoring engineered cartilage into the subchondral bone. Next, we developed a strategy for inkjet printing porcine mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSCs) into this supporting fixation device, which was also designed to provide instructive cues to direct the self-organisation of MSC condensations towards a stratified engineered AC. We found that a higher starting cell-density supported the development of a more zonally defined collagen network within the engineered tissue. Dynamic culture was implemented to further enhance the quality of this engineered tissue, resulting in an approximate 3 fold increase in glycosaminoglycan and collagen accumulation. Ultimately this strategy supported the development of AC that exhibited near-native levels of glycosaminoglycan accumulation (>5% WW), as well as a biomimetic collagen network organisation with a perpendicular to a parallel fibre arrangement (relative to the tissue surface) from the deep to superficial zones via arcading fibres within the middle zone of the engineered tissue. Collectively, this work demonstrates the successful convergence of novel biofabrication methods, bioprinting strategies and culture regimes to engineer a hybrid implant suited to resurfacing AC defects.
AUTHOR Silvestri, Alessandro and Criado, Alejandro and Poletti, Fabrizio and Wang, Faxing and Fanjul-Bolado, Pablo and González-García, María B. and García-Astrain, Clara and Liz-Marzán, Luis M. and Feng, Xinliang and Zanardi, Chiara and Prato, Maurizio
Title Bioresponsive, Electroactive, and Inkjet-Printable Graphene-Based Inks [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Advanced Functional Materials
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Abstract
Abstract With the advent of flexible electronics, the old fashioned and conventional solid-state technology will be replaced by conductive inks combined with low-cost printing techniques. Graphene is an ideal candidate to produce conductive inks, due to its excellent conductivity and zero bandgap. The possibility to chemically modify graphene with active molecules opens up the field of responsive conductive inks. Herein, a bioresponsive, electroactive, and inkjet-printable graphene ink is presented. The ink is based on graphene chemically modified with selected enzymes and an electrochemical mediator, to transduce the products of the enzymatic reaction into an electron flow, proportional to the analyte concentration. A water-based formulation is engineered to be respectful with the enzymatic activity while matching the stringent requirements of inkjet printing. The efficient electrochemical performance of the ink, as well as a proof-of-concept application in biosensing, is demonstrated. The versatility of the system is demonstrated by modifying graphene with various oxidoreductases, obtaining inks with selectivity toward glucose, lactate, methanol, and ethanol.
AUTHOR Oliveira, H. and Médina, C. and Labrunie, G. and Dusserre, N. and Catros, S. and Magnan, L. and Handschin, C. and Stachowicz, M. L. and Fricain, J.-C. and L’Heureux, N.
Title Cell-assembled extracellular matrix (CAM): a human biopaper for the biofabrication of pre-vascularized tissues able to connect to the host circulation in vivo [Abstract]
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
When considering regenerative approaches, the efficient creation of a functional vasculature, that can support the metabolic needs of bioengineered tissues, is essential for their survival after implantation. However, it is widely recognized that the post-implantation microenvironment of the engineered tissues is often hypoxic due to insufficient vascularization, resulting in ischemia injury and necrosis. This is one of the main limitations of current tissue engineering applications aiming at replacing significant tissue volumes. Here, we have explored the use of a new biomaterial, the cell-assembled extracellular matrix (CAM), as a biopaper to biofabricate a vascular system. CAM sheets are a unique, fully biological and fully human material that has already shown stable long-term implantation in humans. We demonstrated, for the first time, the use of this unprocessed human ECM as a microperforated biopaper. Using microvalve dispensing bioprinting, concentrated human endothelial cells (30 millions ml−1) were deposited in a controlled geometry in CAM sheets and cocultured with HSFs. Following multilayer assembly, thick ECM-based constructs fused and supported the survival and maturation of capillary-like structures for up to 26 d of culture. Following 3 weeks of subcutaneous implantation in a mice model, constructs showed limited degradative response and the pre-formed vasculature successfully connected with the host circulatory system to establish active perfusion.This mechanically resilient tissue equivalent has great potential for the creation of more complex implantable tissues, where rapid anastomosis is sine qua non for cell survival and efficient tissue integration.
AUTHOR Dai, Michèle and Belaïdi, Jean-Philippe and Fleury, Guillaume and Garanger, Elisabeth and Rielland, Maïté and Schultze, Xavier and Lecommandoux, Sébastien
Title Elastin-like Polypeptide-Based Bioink: A Promising Alternative for 3D Bioprinting
Year 2021
Journal/Proceedings Biomacromolecules
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AUTHOR Rupp, Harald and Binder, Wolfgang H.
Title 3D Printing of Core–Shell Capsule Composites for Post-Reactive and Damage Sensing Applications [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings Advanced Materials Technologies
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Abstract
Abstract 3D printing of multicomponent materials as an advantageous method over traditional mold casting methods is demonstrated, developing small core–shell capsule composites fabricated by a two-step 3D printing process. Using a two-print-head system (fused deposition modeling extruder and a liquid inkjet print head), micro-sized capsules are manufactured in sizes ranging from 100 to 800 µm. The thermoplastic polymer poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) is chosen as matrix/shell material due to its optimal interaction with the embedded hydrophobic liquids. First, the core–shell capsules are printed with model liquids and pure PCL to optimize the printing parameters and to ensure fully enclosed capsules inside the polymer. As a proof of concept, novel “click” reaction systems, used in self-healing and stress-detection applications, are manufactured in which PCL composites with nano- and micro-fillers are combined with reactive, encapsulated liquids. The so generated 3D printed core–shell capsule composite can be used for post-printing reactions and damage sensing when combined with a fluorogenic dye.
AUTHOR Kamdem Tamo, Arnaud and Doench, Ingo and Morales Helguera, Aliuska and Hoenders, Daniel and Walther, Andreas and Madrazo, Anayancy Osorio
Title Biodegradation of Crystalline Cellulose Nanofibers by Means of Enzyme Immobilized-Alginate Beads and Microparticles [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings Polymers
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Abstract
Recent advances in nanocellulose technology have revealed the potential of crystalline cellulose nanofibers to reinforce materials which are useful for tissue engineering, among other functions. However, the low biodegradability of nanocellulose can possess some problems in biomedical applications. In this work, alginate particles with encapsulated enzyme cellulase extracted from Trichoderma reesei were prepared for the biodegradation of crystalline cellulose nanofibers, which carrier system could be incorporated in tissue engineering biomaterials to degrade the crystalline cellulose nanoreinforcement in situ and on-demand during tissue regeneration. Both alginate beads and microparticles were processed by extrusion-dropping and inkjet-based methods, respectively. Processing parameters like the alginate concentration, concentration of ionic crosslinker Ca2+, hardening time, and ionic strength of the medium were varied. The hydrolytic activity of the free and encapsulated enzyme was evaluated for unmodified (CNFs) and TEMPO-oxidized cellulose nanofibers (TOCNFs) in suspension (heterogeneous conditions); in comparison to solubilized cellulose derivatives (homogeneous conditions). The enzymatic activity was evaluated for temperatures between 25–75 °C, pH range from 3.5 to 8.0 and incubation times until 21 d. Encapsulated cellulase in general displayed higher activity compared to the free enzyme over wider temperature and pH ranges and for longer incubation times. A statistical design allowed optimizing the processing parameters for the preparation of enzyme-encapsulated alginate particles presenting the highest enzymatic activity and sphericity. The statistical analysis yielded the optimum particles characteristics and properties by using a formulation of 2% (w/v) alginate, a coagulation bath of 0.2 M CaCl2 and a hardening time of 1 h. In homogeneous conditions the highest catalytic activity was obtained at 55 °C and pH 4.8. These temperature and pH values were considered to study the biodegradation of the crystalline cellulose nanofibers in suspension. The encapsulated cellulase preserved its activity for several weeks over that of the free enzyme, which latter considerably decreased and practically showed deactivation after just 10 d. The alginate microparticles with their high surface area-to-volume ratio effectively allowed the controlled release of the encapsulated enzyme and thereby the sustained hydrolysis of the cellulose nanofibers. The relative activity of cellulase encapsulated in the microparticles leveled-off at around 60% after one day and practically remained at that value for three weeks.
AUTHOR Estermann, Manuela and Bisig, Christoph and Septiadi, Dedy and Petri-Fink, Alke and Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara
Title Bioprinting for Human Respiratory and Gastrointestinal In Vitro Models [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings
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Abstract
Increasing ethical and biological concerns require a paradigm shift toward animal-free testing strategies for drug testing and hazard assessments. To this end, the application of bioprinting technology in the field of biomedicine is driving a rapid progress in tissue engineering. In particular, standardized and reproducible in vitro models produced by three-dimensional (3D) bioprinting technique represent a possible alternative to animal models, enabling in vitro studies relevant to in vivo conditions. The innovative approach of 3D bioprinting allows a spatially controlled deposition of cells and biomaterial in a layer-by-layer fashion providing a platform for engineering reproducible models. However, despite the promising and revolutionizing character of 3D bioprinting technology, standardized protocols providing detailed instructions are lacking. Here, we provide a protocol for the automatized printing of simple alveolar, bronchial, and intestine epithelial cell layers as the basis for more complex respiratory and gastrointestinal tissue models. Such systems will be useful for high-throughput toxicity screening and drug efficacy evaluation.
AUTHOR Sohrabi, Somayeh and kassir, Nour and Keshavarz Moraveji, Mostafa
Title Droplet microfluidics: fundamentals and its advanced applications [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings RSC Advances
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Abstract
Droplet-based microfluidic systems have been shown to be compatible with many chemical and biological reagents and capable of performing a variety of operations that can be rendered programmable and reconfigurable. This platform has dimensional scaling benefits that have enabled controlled and rapid mixing of fluids in the droplet reactors{,} resulting in decreased reaction times. This{,} coupled with the precise generation and repeatability of droplet operations{,} has made the droplet-based microfluidic system a potent high throughput platform for biomedical research and applications. In addition to being used as micro-reactors ranging from the nano- to femtoliter (10−15 liters) range; droplet-based systems have also been used to directly synthesize particles and encapsulate many biological entities for biomedicine and biotechnology applications. For this{,} in the following article we will focus on the various droplet operations{,} as well as the numerous applications of the system and its future in many advanced scientific fields. Due to advantages of droplet-based systems{,} this technology has the potential to offer solutions to today{'}s biomedical engineering challenges for advanced diagnostics and therapeutics.
AUTHOR Song, Jie-Liang and Fu, Xin-Ye and Raza, Ali and Shen, Nai-An and Xue, Ya-Qi and Wang, Hua-Jie and Wang, Jin-Ye
Title Enhancement of mechanical strength of TCP-alginate based bioprinted constructs [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
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Abstract
To overcome the mechanical drawback of bioink, we proposed a supporter model to enhance the mechanical strength of bioprinted 3D constructs, in which a unit-assembly idea was involved. Based on Computed Tomography images of critical-sized rabbit bone defect, the 3D re-construction was accomplished by a sequenced process using Mimics 17.0, BioCAM and BioCAD software. 3D constructs were bioprinted using polycaprolactone (PCL) ink for the outer supporter under extrusion mode, and cell-laden tricalcium phosphate (TCP)/alginate bioink for the inner filler under air pressure dispensing mode. The relationship of viscosity of bioinks, 3D bioprinting pressure, TCP/alginate ratio and cell survival were investigated by the shear viscosities analysis, live/dead cell test and cell-counting kit 8 measurement. The viscosity of bioinks at 1.0 s−1-shear rate could be adjusted within the range of 1.75 ± 0.29 Pa·s to 155.65 ± 10.86 Pa·s by changing alginate concentration, corresponding to 10 kPa–130 kPa of printing pressure. This design with PCL supporter could significantly enhance the compressive strength and compressive modulus of standardized 3D mechanical testing specimens up to 2.15 ± 0.14 MPa to 2.58 ± 0.09 MPa, and 42.83 ± 4.75 MPa to 53.12 ± 1.19 MPa, respectively. Cells could maintain the high viability (over 80%) under the given printing pressure but cell viability declined with the increase of TCP content. Cell survival after experiencing 7 days of cell culture could be achieved when the ratio of TCP/alginate was 1 : 4. All data supported the feasibility of the supporter and unit-assembly model to enhance mechanical properties of bioprinted 3D constructs.
AUTHOR Dubey, Nileshkumar and Ferreira, Jessica A. and Malda, Jos and Bhaduri, Sarit B. and Bottino, Marco C.
Title Extracellular Matrix/Amorphous Magnesium Phosphate Bioink for 3D Bioprinting of Craniomaxillofacial Bone Tissue [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
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DOI/URL DOI
Abstract
Bioprinting, a promising field in regenerative medicine, holds great potential to create three-dimensional, defect-specific vascularized bones with tremendous opportunities to address unmet craniomaxillofacial reconstructive challenges. A cytocompatible bioink is a critical prerequisite to successfully regenerate functional bone tissue. Synthetic self-assembling peptides have a nanofibrous structure resembling the native extracellular matrix (ECM), making them an excellent bioink component. Amorphous magnesium phosphates (AMPs) have shown greater levels of resorption while maintaining high biocompatibility, osteoinductivity, and low inflammatory response, as compared to their calcium phosphate counterparts. Here, we have established a novel bioink formulation (ECM/AMP) that combines an ECM-based hydrogel containing 2% octapeptide FEFEFKFK and 98% water with AMP particles to realize high cell function with desirable bioprintability. We analyzed the osteogenic differentiation of dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) encapsulated in the bioink, as well as in vivo bone regeneration, to define the potential of the formulated bioink as a growth factor-free bone-forming strategy. Cell-laden AMP-modified bioprinted constructs showed an improved cell morphology but similar cell viability (∼90%) compared to their AMP-free counterpart. In functional assays, the cell-laden bioprinted constructs modified with AMP exhibited a high level of mineralization and osteogenic gene expression without the use of growth factors, thus suggesting that the presence of AMP-triggered DPSCs’ osteogenic differentiation. Cell-free ECM-based bioprinted constructs were implanted in vivo. In comparison with the ECM group, bone volume per total volume for ECM/1.0AMP was approximately 1.7- and 1.4-fold higher at 4 and 8 weeks, respectively. Further, a significant increase in the bone density was observed in ECM/1.0AMP from 4 to 8 weeks. These results demonstrate that the presence of AMP in the bioink significantly increased bone formation, thus showing promise for in situ bioprinting strategies. We foresee significant potential in translating this innovative bioink toward the regeneration of patient-specific bone tissue for regenerative dentistry. Bioprinting, a promising field in regenerative medicine, holds great potential to create three-dimensional, defect-specific vascularized bones with tremendous opportunities to address unmet craniomaxillofacial reconstructive challenges. A cytocompatible bioink is a critical prerequisite to successfully regenerate functional bone tissue. Synthetic self-assembling peptides have a nanofibrous structure resembling the native extracellular matrix (ECM), making them an excellent bioink component. Amorphous magnesium phosphates (AMPs) have shown greater levels of resorption while maintaining high biocompatibility, osteoinductivity, and low inflammatory response, as compared to their calcium phosphate counterparts. Here, we have established a novel bioink formulation (ECM/AMP) that combines an ECM-based hydrogel containing 2% octapeptide FEFEFKFK and 98% water with AMP particles to realize high cell function with desirable bioprintability. We analyzed the osteogenic differentiation of dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs) encapsulated in the bioink, as well as in vivo bone regeneration, to define the potential of the formulated bioink as a growth factor-free bone-forming strategy. Cell-laden AMP-modified bioprinted constructs showed an improved cell morphology but similar cell viability (∼90%) compared to their AMP-free counterpart. In functional assays, the cell-laden bioprinted constructs modified with AMP exhibited a high level of mineralization and osteogenic gene expression without the use of growth factors, thus suggesting that the presence of AMP-triggered DPSCs’ osteogenic differentiation. Cell-free ECM-based bioprinted constructs were implanted in vivo. In comparison with the ECM group, bone volume per total volume for ECM/1.0AMP was approximately 1.7- and 1.4-fold higher at 4 and 8 weeks, respectively. Further, a significant increase in the bone density was observed in ECM/1.0AMP from 4 to 8 weeks. These results demonstrate that the presence of AMP in the bioink significantly increased bone formation, thus showing promise for in situ bioprinting strategies. We foresee significant potential in translating this innovative bioink toward the regeneration of patient-specific bone tissue for regenerative dentistry.
AUTHOR Hauptstein, Julia and Böck, Thomas and Bartolf-Kopp, Michael and Forster, Leonard and Stahlhut, Philipp and Nadernezhad, Ali and Blahetek, Gina and Zernecke-Madsen, Alma and Detsch, Rainer and Jüngst, Tomasz and Groll, Jürgen and Teßmar, Jörg and Blunk, Torsten
Title Hyaluronic Acid-Based Bioink Composition Enabling 3D Bioprinting and Improving Quality of Deposited Cartilaginous Extracellular Matrix [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings Advanced Healthcare Materials
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Abstract In 3D bioprinting, bioinks with high concentrations of polymeric materials are frequently used to enable fabrication of 3D cell-hydrogel constructs with sufficient stability. However, this is often associated with restricted cell bioactivity and an inhomogeneous distribution of newly produced extracellular matrix (ECM). Therefore, this study investigates bioink compositions based on hyaluronic acid (HA), an attractive material for cartilage regeneration, which allow for reduction of polymer content. Thiolated HA and allyl-modified poly(glycidol) in varying concentrations are UV-crosslinked. To adapt bioinks to poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL)-supported 3D bioprinting, the gels are further supplemented with 1 wt% unmodified high molecular weight HA (hmHA) and chondrogenic differentiation of incorporated human mesenchymal stromal cells is assessed. Strikingly, addition of hmHA to gels with a low polymer content (3 wt%) results in distinct increase of construct quality with a homogeneous ECM distribution throughout the constructs, independent of the printing process. Improved ECM distribution in those constructs is associated with increased construct stiffness after chondrogenic differentiation, as compared to higher concentrated constructs (10 wt%), which only show pericellular matrix deposition. The study contributes to effective bioink development, demonstrating dual function of a supplement enabling PCL-supported bioprinting and at the same time improving biological properties of the resulting constructs.
AUTHOR Šimková, Kateřina and Thormann, Ursula and Imanidis, Georgios
Title Investigation of drug dissolution and uptake from low-density DPI formulations in an impactor–integrated cell culture model [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings European Journal of Pharmaceutics and Biopharmaceutics
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Abstract
Besides deposition, pulmonary bioavailability is determined by dissolution of particles in the scarce epithelial fluid and by cellular API uptake. In the present work, we have developed an experimental in vitro model, which is combining the state-of-the-art next generation impactor (NGI), used for aerodynamic performance assessment of inhalation products, with a culture of human alveolar A549 epithelial cells to study the fate of inhaled drugs following lung deposition. The goal was to investigate five previously developed nano-milled and spray-dried budesonide formulations and to examine the suitability of the in vitro test model. The NGI dissolution cups of stages 3, 4, and 5 were transformed to accommodate cell culture inserts while assuring minimal interference with the air flow. A549 cells were cultivated at the air–liquid interface on Corning® Matrigel® -coated inserts. After deposition of aerodynamically classified powders on the cell cultures, budesonide amount was determined on the cell surface, in the interior of the cell monolayer, and in the basal solution for four to eight hours. Significant differences in the total deposited drug amount and the amount remaining on the cell surface at the end of the experiment were found between different formulations and NGI stages. Roughly 50% of budesonide was taken up by the cells and converted to a large extent to its metabolic conjugate with oleic acid for all formulations and stages. Prolonged time required for complete drug dissolution and cell uptake in case of large deposited powder amounts suggested initial drug saturation of the surfactant layer of the cell surface. Discrimination between formulations with respect to time scale of dissolution and cell uptake was possible with the present test model providing useful insights into the biopharmaceutical performance of developed formulations that may be relevant for predicting local bioavailability. The absolute quantitative result of cell uptake and permeation into the systemic compartment is unreliable, though, because of partly compromised cell membrane integrity due to particle impaction and professed leakiness of A549 monolayer tight junctions, respectively.
AUTHOR Rupp, Harald and Binder, Wolfgang H.
Title Multicomponent Stress-Sensing Composites Fabricated by 3D-Printing Methodologies [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings Macromolecular Rapid Communications
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Abstract
Abstract The preparation and characterization of mechanoresponsive, 3D-printed composites are reported using a dual-printing setup for both, liquid dispensing and fused-deposition-modeling. The here reported stress-sensing materials are based on high- and low molecular weight mechanophores, including poly(ε-caprolactone)-, polyurethane-, and alkyl(C11)-based latent copper(I)bis(N-heterocyclic carbenes), which can be activated by compression to trigger a fluorogenic, copper(I)-catalyzed azide/alkyne “click”-reaction of an azide-functionalized fluorescent dye inside a bulk polymeric material. Focus is placed on the printability and postprinting activity of the latent mechanophores and the fluorogenic “click”-components. The multicomponent specimen containing both, azide and alkyne, are manufactured via a 3D-printer to place the components separately inside the specimen into void spaces generated during the FDM-process, which subsequently are filled with liquids using a separate liquid dispenser, located within the same 3D-printing system. The low-molecular weight mechanophores bearing the alkyl-C11 chains display the best printability, yielding a mechanochemical response after the 3D-printing process.
AUTHOR Athanasiadis, Markos and Afanasenkau, Dzmitry and Derks, Wouter and Tondera, Christoph and Murganti, Francesca and Busskamp, Volker and Bergmann, Olaf and Minev, Ivan R.
Title Printed elastic membranes for multimodal pacing and recording of human stem-cell-derived cardiomyocytes [Abstract]
Year 2020
Journal/Proceedings npj Flexible Electronics
Reftype Athanasiadis2020
DOI/URL DOI
Abstract
Bioelectronic interfaces employing arrays of sensors and bioactuators are promising tools for the study, repair and engineering of cardiac tissues. They are typically constructed from rigid and brittle materials processed in a cleanroom environment. An outstanding technological challenge is the integration of soft materials enabling a closer match to the mechanical properties of biological cells and tissues. Here we present an algorithm for direct writing of elastic membranes with embedded electrodes, optical waveguides and microfluidics using a commercial 3D printing system and a palette of silicone elastomers. As proof of principle, we demonstrate interfacing of cardiomyocytes derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), which are engineered to express Channelrhodopsin-2. We demonstrate electrical recording of cardiomyocyte field potentials and their concomitant modulation by optical and pharmacological stimulation delivered via the membrane. Our work contributes a simple prototyping strategy with potential applications in organ-on-chip or implantable systems that are multi-modal and mechanically soft.
AUTHOR Angelopoulos, Ioannis and Allenby, Mark C. and Lim, Mayasari and Zamorano, Mauricio
Title Engineering inkjet bioprinting processes toward translational therapies [Abstract]
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings Biotechnology and Bioengineering
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Abstract
Abstract Bioprinting is the assembly of three-dimensional (3D) tissue constructs by layering cell-laden biomaterials using additive manufacturing techniques, offering great potential for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Such a process can be performed with high resolution and control by personalized or commercially available inkjet printers. However, bioprinting's clinical translation is significantly limited due to process engineering challenges. Upstream challenges include synthesis, cellular incorporation, and functionalization of “bioinks,” and extrusion of print geometries. Downstream challenges address sterilization, culture, implantation, and degradation. In the long run, bioinks must provide a microenvironment to support cell growth, development, and maturation and must interact and integrate with the surrounding tissues after implantation. Additionally, a robust, scaleable manufacturing process must pass regulatory scrutiny from regulatory bodies such as U.S. Food and Drug Administration, European Medicines Agency, or Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration for bioprinting to have a real clinical impact. In this review, recent advances in inkjet-based 3D bioprinting will be presented, emphasizing on biomaterials available, their properties, and the process to generate bioprinted constructs with application in medicine. Current challenges and the future path of bioprinting and bioinks will be addressed, with emphasis in mass production aspects and the regulatory framework bioink-based products must comply to translate this technology from the bench to the clinic.
AUTHOR Apelgren, Peter and Karabulut, Erdem and Amoroso, Matteo and Mantas, Athanasios and Martínez Ávila, Héctor and Kölby, Lars and Kondo, Tetsuo and Toriz, Guillermo and Gatenholm, Paul
Title In Vivo Human Cartilage Formation in Three-Dimensional Bioprinted Constructs with a Novel Bacterial Nanocellulose Bioink [Abstract]
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings ACS Biomaterials Science & Engineering
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Abstract
Bacterial nanocellulose (BNC) is a 3D network of nanofibrils exhibiting excellent biocompatibility. Here, we present the aqueous counter collision (ACC) method of BNC disassembly to create bioink with suitable properties for cartilage-specific 3D-bioprinting. BNC was disentangled by ACC, and fibril characteristics were analyzed. Bioink printing fidelity and shear-thinning properties were evaluated. Cell-laden bioprinted grid constructs (5 × 5 × 1 mm3) containing human nasal chondrocytes (10 M mL-1) were implanted in nude mice and explanted after 30 and 60 days. Both ACC and hydrolysis resulted in significantly reduced fiber lengths, with ACC resulting in longer fibrils and fewer negative charges relative to hydrolysis. Moreover, ACC-BNC bioink showed outstanding printability, postprinting mechanical stability, and structural integrity. In vivo, cell-laden structures were rapidly integrated, maintained structural integrity, and showed chondrocyte proliferation, with 32.8 ± 13.8 cells per mm2 observed after 30 days and 85.6 ± 30.0 cells per mm2 at day 60 (p = 0.002). Furthermore, a full-thickness skin graft was attached and integrated completely on top of the 3D-bioprinted construct. The novel ACC disentanglement technique makes BNC biomaterial highly suitable for 3D-bioprinting and clinical translation, suggesting cell-laden 3D-bioprinted ACC-BNC as a promising solution for cartilage repair. Bacterial nanocellulose (BNC) is a 3D network of nanofibrils exhibiting excellent biocompatibility. Here, we present the aqueous counter collision (ACC) method of BNC disassembly to create bioink with suitable properties for cartilage-specific 3D-bioprinting. BNC was disentangled by ACC, and fibril characteristics were analyzed. Bioink printing fidelity and shear-thinning properties were evaluated. Cell-laden bioprinted grid constructs (5 × 5 × 1 mm3) containing human nasal chondrocytes (10 M mL-1) were implanted in nude mice and explanted after 30 and 60 days. Both ACC and hydrolysis resulted in significantly reduced fiber lengths, with ACC resulting in longer fibrils and fewer negative charges relative to hydrolysis. Moreover, ACC-BNC bioink showed outstanding printability, postprinting mechanical stability, and structural integrity. In vivo, cell-laden structures were rapidly integrated, maintained structural integrity, and showed chondrocyte proliferation, with 32.8 ± 13.8 cells per mm2 observed after 30 days and 85.6 ± 30.0 cells per mm2 at day 60 (p = 0.002). Furthermore, a full-thickness skin graft was attached and integrated completely on top of the 3D-bioprinted construct. The novel ACC disentanglement technique makes BNC biomaterial highly suitable for 3D-bioprinting and clinical translation, suggesting cell-laden 3D-bioprinted ACC-BNC as a promising solution for cartilage repair.
AUTHOR Markstedt, Kajsa and Håkansson, Karl and Toriz, Guillermo and Gatenholm, Paul
Title Materials from trees assembled by 3D printing – Wood tissue beyond nature limits [Abstract]
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings Applied Materials Today
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Abstract
Materials from trees have the potential to replace fossil based and other non-sustainable materials in everyday products, thus transforming the society back to a bioeconomy. This paper presents a 3D printing platform which mimics wood biogenesis for the assembly of wood biopolymers into wood-like hierarchical composites. The genome was substituted with G-code, the programming language which controls how the 3D printer assembles material. The rosette was replaced by the printer head for extrusion of cellulose. Instead of microtubules guiding the alignment of cellulose, the printing direction was guided by an x/y stage, thus mimicking the microfibril angle. The printed structures were locked by an enzymatic crosslinking reaction similar to what occurs in the cell wall upon lignification. Hierarchical structures characteristic for wood were designed and printed with control of density, swelling and directional strength. Accelerating the development of the 3D printing technology helps realize the circular bioeconomy where garments, packaging, furniture and entire houses are manufactured by 3D printing wood.
AUTHOR Filardo, G. and Petretta, M. and Cavallo, C. and Roseti, L. and Durante, S. and Albisinni, U. and Grigolo, B.
Title Patient-specific meniscus prototype based on 3D bioprinting of human cell-laden scaffold [Abstract]
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings Bone and Joint Research
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Abstract
Objectives Meniscal injuries are often associated with an active lifestyle. The damage of meniscal tissue puts young patients at higher risk of undergoing meniscal surgery and, therefore, at higher risk of osteoarthritis. In this study, we undertook proof-of-concept research to develop a cellularized human meniscus by using 3D bioprinting technology. Methods A 3D model of bioengineered medial meniscus tissue was created, based on MRI scans of a human volunteer. The Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) data from these MRI scans were processed using dedicated software, in order to obtain an STL model of the structure. The chosen 3D Discovery printing tool was a microvalve-based inkjet printhead. Primary mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) were isolated from bone marrow and embedded in a collagen-based bio-ink before printing. LIVE/DEAD assay was performed on realized cell-laden constructs carrying MSCs in order to evaluate cell distribution and viability. Results This study involved the realization of a human cell-laden collagen meniscus using 3D bioprinting. The meniscus prototype showed the biological potential of this technology to provide an anatomically shaped, patient-specific construct with viable cells on a biocompatible material. Conclusion This paper reports the preliminary findings of the production of a custom-made, cell-laden, collagen-based human meniscus. The prototype described could act as the starting point for future developments of this collagen-based, tissue-engineered structure, which could aid the optimization of implants designed to replace damaged menisci. Cite this article: G. Filardo, M. Petretta, C. Cavallo, L. Roseti, S. Durante, U. Albisinni, B. Grigolo. Patient-specific meniscus prototype based on 3D bioprinting of human cell-laden scaffold. Bone Joint Res 2019;8:101–106. DOI: 10.1302/2046-3758.82.BJR-2018-0134.R1.
AUTHOR Pedrotty, Dawn M. and Volodymyr, Kuzmenko and Erdem, Karabulut and Sugrue Alan, M. and Christopher, Livia and Vaidya Vaibhav, R. and McLeod Christopher, J. and Asirvatham Samuel, J. and Paul, Gatenholm and Suraj, Kapa
Title Three-Dimensional Printed Biopatches With Conductive Ink Facilitate Cardiac Conduction When Applied to Disrupted Myocardium
Year 2019
Journal/Proceedings Circulation: Arrhythmia and Electrophysiology
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AUTHOR Gretzinger, Sarah and Beckert, Nicole and Gleadall, Andrew and Lee-Thedieck, Cornelia and Hubbuch, Jürgen
Title 3D bioprinting – Flow cytometry as analytical strategy for 3D cell structures [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings Bioprinting
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Abstract
The importance of 3D printing technologies increased significantly over the recent years. They are considered to have a huge impact in regenerative medicine and tissue engineering, since 3D bioprinting enables the production of cell-laden 3D scaffolds. Transition from academic research to pharmaceutical industry or clinical applications, however, is highly dependent on developing a robust and well-known process, while maintaining critical cell characteristics. Hence, a directed and systematic approach to 3D bioprinting process development is required, which also allows for the monitoring of these cell characteristics. This work presents the development of a flow cytometry-based analytical strategy as a tool for 3D bioprinting research. The development was based on a model process using a commercially available alginate-based bioink, the β-cell line INS-1E, and direct dispensing as 3D bioprinting method. We demonstrated that this set-up enabled viability and proliferation analysis. Additionally, use of an automated sampler facilitated high-throughput screenings. Finally, we showed that each process step, e.g. suspension of cells in bioink or 3D printing, cross-linking of the alginate scaffold after printing, has a crucial impact on INS-1E viability. This reflects the importance of process optimization in 3D bioprinting and the usefulness of the flow cytometry-based analytical strategy described here. The presented strategy has a great potential as a cell characterisation tool for 3D bioprinting and may contribute to a more directed process development.
AUTHOR Shi, Pujiang and Tan, Yong Sheng Edgar and Yeong, Wai Yee and Li, Hoi Yeung and Laude, Augustinus
Title A bilayer photoreceptor‐retinal tissue model with gradient cell density design: A study of microvalve‐based bioprinting [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings Journal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
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Abstract ARPE‐19 and Y79 cells were precisely and effectively delivered to form an in vitro retinal tissue model via 3D cell bioprinting technology. The samples were characterized by cell viability assay, haematoxylin and eosin and immunofluorescent staining, scanning electrical microscopy and confocal microscopy, and so forth. The bioprinted ARPE‐19 cells formed a high‐quality cell monolayer in 14 days. Manually seeded ARPE‐19 cells were poorly controlled during and after cell seeding, and they aggregated to form uneven cell layer. The Y79 cells were subsequently bioprinted on the ARPE‐19 cell monolayer to form 2 distinctive patterns. The microvalve‐based bioprinting is efficient and accurate to build the in vitro tissue models with the potential to provide similar pathological responses and mechanism to human diseases, to mimic the phenotypic endpoints that are comparable with clinical studies, and to provide a realistic prediction of clinical efficacy.
AUTHOR Agarwala, Shweta and Lee, Jia Min and Ng, Wei Long and Layani, Michael and Yeong, Wai Yee and Magdassi, Shlomo
Title A novel 3D bioprinted flexible and biocompatible hydrogel bioelectronic platform [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings Biosensors and Bioelectronics
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Abstract Bioelectronics platforms are gaining widespread attention as they provide a template to study the interactions between biological species and electronics. Decoding the effect of the electrical signals on the cells and tissues holds the promise for treating the malignant tissue growth, regenerating organs and engineering new-age medical devices. This work is a step forward in this direction, where bio- and electronic materials co-exist on one platform without any need for post processing. We fabricate a freestanding and flexible hydrogel based platform using 3D bioprinting. The fabrication process is simple, easy and provides a flexible route to print materials with preferred shapes, size and spatial orientation. Through the design of interdigitated electrodes and heating coil, the platform can be tailored to print various circuits for different functionalities. The biocompatibility of the printed platform is tested using C2C12 murine myoblasts cell line. Furthermore, normal human dermal fibroblasts (primary cells) are also seeded on the platform to ascertain the compatibility.
AUTHOR Ng, Wei Long and Goh, Min Hao and Yeong, Wai Yee and Naing, May Win
Title Applying macromolecular crowding to 3D bioprinting: fabrication of 3D hierarchical porous collagen-based hydrogel constructs [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings Biomaterials Science
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Abstract
Native tissues and/or organs possess complex hierarchical porous structures that confer highly-specific cellular functions. Despite advances in fabrication processes{,} it is still very challenging to emulate the hierarchical porous collagen architecture found in most native tissues. Hence{,} the ability to recreate such hierarchical porous structures would result in biomimetic tissue-engineered constructs. Here{,} a single-step drop-on-demand (DOD) bioprinting strategy is proposed to fabricate hierarchical porous collagen-based hydrogels. Printable macromolecule-based bio-inks (polyvinylpyrrolidone{,} PVP) have been developed and printed in a DOD manner to manipulate the porosity within the multi-layered collagen-based hydrogels by altering the collagen fibrillogenesis process. The experimental results have indicated that hierarchical porous collagen structures could be achieved by controlling the number of macromolecule-based bio-ink droplets printed on each printed collagen layer. This facile single-step bioprinting process could be useful for the structural design of collagen-based hydrogels for various tissue engineering applications.
AUTHOR Hauser, Daniel and Estermann, Manuela and Milosevic, Ana and Steinmetz, Lukas and Vanhecke, Dimitri and Septiadi, Dedy and Drasler, Barbara and Petri-Fink, Alke and Ball, Vincent and Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara
Title Polydopamine/Transferrin Hybrid Nanoparticles for Targeted Cell-Killing [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings Nanomaterials
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Abstract
Polydopamine can form biocompatible particles that convert light into heat. Recently, a protocol has been optimized to synthesize polydopamine/protein hybrid nanoparticles that retain the biological function of proteins, and combine it with the stimuli-induced heat generation of polydopamine. We have utilized this novel system to form polydopamine particles, containing transferrin (PDA/Tf). Mouse melanoma cells, which strongly express the transferrin receptor, were exposed to PDA/Tf nanoparticles (NPs) and, subsequently, were irradiated with a UV laser. The cell death rate was monitored in real-time. When irradiated, the melanoma cells exposed to PDA/Tf NPs underwent apoptosis, faster than the control cells, pointing towards the ability of PDA/Tf to mediate UV-light-induced cell death. The system was also validated in an organotypic, 3D-printed tumor spheroid model, comprising mouse melanoma cells, and the exposure and subsequent irradiation with UV-light, yielded similar results to the 2D cell culture. The process of apoptosis was found to be targeted and mediated by the lysosomal membrane permeabilization. Therefore, the herein presented polydopamine/protein NPs constitute a versatile and stable system for cancer cell-targeting and photothermal apoptosis induction.
AUTHOR Kuzmenko, Volodymyr and Karabulut, Erdem and Pernevik, Elin and Enoksson, Peter and Gatenholm, Paul
Title Tailor-made conductive inks from cellulose nanofibrils for 3D printing of neural guidelines [Abstract]
Year 2018
Journal/Proceedings Carbohydrate Polymers
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Abstract
Neural tissue engineering (TE), an innovative biomedical method of brain study, is very dependent on scaffolds that support cell development into a functional tissue. Recently, 3D patterned scaffolds for neural TE have shown significant positive effects on cells by a more realistic mimicking of actual neural tissue. In this work, we present a conductive nanocellulose-based ink for 3D printing of neural TE scaffolds. It is demonstrated that by using cellulose nanofibrils and carbon nanotubes as ink constituents, it is possible to print guidelines with a diameter below 1 mm and electrical conductivity of 3.8 × 10−1 S cm−1. The cell culture studies reveal that neural cells prefer to attach, proliferate, and differentiate on the 3D printed conductive guidelines. To our knowledge, this is the first research effort devoted to using cost-effective cellulosic 3D printed structures in neural TE, and we suppose that much more will arise in the near future.
AUTHOR Nguyen, Duong and Hägg, Daniel and Forsman, Alma and Ekholm, Josefine and Nimkingratana, Puwapong and Brantsing, Camilla and Kalogeropoulos, Theodoros and Zaunz, Samantha and Concaro, Sebastian and Brittberg, Mats and Lindahl, Anders and Gatenholm, Paul and Enejder, Annika and Simonsson, Stina
Title Cartilage Tissue Engineering by the 3D Bioprinting of iPS Cells in a Nanocellulose/Alginate Bioink [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Scientific Reports
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Abstract
Cartilage lesions can progress into secondary osteoarthritis and cause severe clinical problems in numerous patients. As a prospective treatment of such lesions, human-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) were shown to be 3D bioprinted into cartilage mimics using a nanofibrillated cellulose (NFC) composite bioink when co-printed with irradiated human chondrocytes. Two bioinks were investigated: NFC with alginate (NFC/A) or hyaluronic acid (NFC/HA). Low proliferation and phenotypic changes away from pluripotency were seen in the case of NFC/HA. However, in the case of the 3D-bioprinted NFC/A (60/40, dry weight % ratio) constructs, pluripotency was initially maintained, and after five weeks, hyaline-like cartilaginous tissue with collagen type II expression and lacking tumorigenic Oct4 expression was observed in 3D -bioprinted NFC/A (60/40, dry weight % relation) constructs. Moreover, a marked increase in cell number within the cartilaginous tissue was detected by 2-photon fluorescence microscopy, indicating the importance of high cell densities in the pursuit of achieving good survival after printing. We conclude that NFC/A bioink is suitable for bioprinting iPSCs to support cartilage production in co-cultures with irradiated chondrocytes.
AUTHOR Baumann, Bernhard and Jungst, Tomasz and Stichler, Simone and Feineis, Susanne and Wiltschka, Oliver and Kuhlmann, Matthias and Lindén, Mika and Groll, Jürgen
Title Control of Nanoparticle Release Kinetics from 3D Printed Hydrogel Scaffolds [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Angewandte Chemie International Edition
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Abstract
The convergence of biofabrication with nanotechnology is largely unexplored but enables geometrical control of cell-biomaterial arrangement combined with controlled drug delivery and release. As a step towards integration of these two fields of research, this study demonstrates that modulation of electrostatic nanoparticle–polymer and nanoparticle–nanoparticle interactions can be used for tuning nanoparticle release kinetics from 3D printed hydrogel scaffolds. This generic strategy can be used for spatiotemporal control of the release kinetics of nanoparticulate drug vectors in biofabricated constructs.
AUTHOR Mouser, V. H. M. and Abbadessa, A. and Levato, R. and Hennink, W. E. and Vermonden, T. and Gawlitta, D. and Malda, J.
Title Development of a thermosensitive HAMA-containing bio-ink for the fabrication of composite cartilage repair constructs [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
Fine-tuning of bio-ink composition and material processing parameters is crucial for the development of biomechanically relevant cartilage constructs. This study aims to design and develop cartilage constructs with tunable internal architectures and relevant mechanical properties. More specifically, the potential of methacrylated hyaluronic acid (HAMA) added to thermosensitive hydrogels composed of methacrylated poly[ N -(2-hydroxypropyl)methacrylamide mono/dilactate] (pHPMA-lac)/polyethylene glycol (PEG) triblock copolymers, to optimize cartilage-like tissue formation by embedded chondrocytes, and enhance printability was explored. Additionally, co-printing with polycaprolactone (PCL) was performed for mechanical reinforcement. Chondrocyte-laden hydrogels composed of pHPMA-lac-PEG and different concentrations of HAMA (0%–1% w/w) were cultured for 28 d in vitro and subsequently evaluated for the presence of cartilage-like matrix. Young’s moduli were determined for hydrogels with the different HAMA concentrations. Additionally, hydrogel/PCL constructs with different internal architectures were co-printed and analyzed for their mechanical properties. The results of this study demonstrated a dose-dependent effect of HAMA concentration on cartilage matrix synthesis by chondrocytes. Glycosaminoglycan (GAG) and collagen type II content increased with intermediate HAMA concentrations (0.25%–0.5%) compared to HAMA-free controls, while a relatively high HAMA concentration (1%) resulted in increased fibrocartilage formation. Young’s moduli of generated hydrogel constructs ranged from 14 to 31 kPa and increased with increasing HAMA concentration. The pHPMA-lac-PEG hydrogels with 0.5% HAMA were found to be optimal for cartilage-like tissue formation. Therefore, this hydrogel system was co-printed with PCL to generate porous or solid constructs with different mesh sizes. Young’s moduli of these composite constructs were in the range of native cartilage (3.5–4.6 MPa). Interestingly, the co-printing procedure influenced the mechanical properties of the final constructs. These findings are relevant for future bio-ink development, as they demonstrate the importance of selecting proper HAMA concentrations, as well as appropriate print settings and construct designs for optimal cartilage matrix deposition and final mechanical properties of constructs, respectively.
AUTHOR Henriksson, I. and Gatenholm, P. and Hägg, D. A.
Title Increased lipid accumulation and adipogenic gene expression of adipocytes in 3D bioprinted nanocellulose scaffolds [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
Compared to standard 2D culture systems, new methods for 3D cell culture of adipocytes could provide more physiologically accurate data and a deeper understanding of metabolic diseases such as diabetes. By resuspending living cells in a bioink of nanocellulose and hyaluronic acid, we were able to print 3D scaffolds with uniform cell distribution. After one week in culture, cell viability was 95%, and after two weeks the cells displayed a more mature phenotype with larger lipid droplets than standard 2D cultured cells. Unlike cells in 2D culture, the 3D bioprinted cells did not detach upon lipid accumulation. After two weeks, the gene expression of the adipogenic marker genes PPAR γ and FABP4 was increased 2.0- and 2.2-fold, respectively, for cells in 3D bioprinted constructs compared with 2D cultured cells. Our 3D bioprinted culture system produces better adipogenic differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells and a more mature cell phenotype than conventional 2D culture systems.
AUTHOR Paxton, Naomi Claire and Smolan, Willi and Böck, Thomas and Melchels, Ferry P. W. and Groll, Juergen and Juengst, Tomasz
Title Proposal to Assess Printability of Bioinks for Extrusion-Based Bioprinting and Evaluation of Rheological Properties Governing Bioprintability [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
Abstract The development and formulation of printable inks for extrusion-based 3D bioprinting has been a major challenge in the field of biofabrication. Inks, often polymer solutions with the addition of crosslinking to form hydrogels, must not only display adequate mechanical properties for the chosen application, but also show high biocompatibility as well as printability. Here we describe a reproducible two-step method for the assessment of the printability of inks for bioprinting, focussing firstly on screening ink formulations to assess fibre formation and the ability to form 3D constructs before presenting a method for the rheological evaluation of inks to characterise the yield point, shear thinning and recovery behaviour. In conjunction, a mathematical model was formulated to provide a theoretical understanding of the pressure-driven, shear thinning extrusion of inks through needles in a bioprinter. The assessment methods were trialled with a commercially-available crème, poloxamer 407, alginate-based inks and an alginate-gelatin composite material. Yield stress was investigated by applying a stress ramp to a number of inks, which demonstrated the necessity of high yield for printable materials. The shear thinning behaviour of the inks was then characterised by quantifying the degree of shear thinning and using the mathematical model to predict the window of printer operating parameters in which the materials could be printed. Furthermore, the model predicted high shear conditions and high residence times for cells at the walls of the needle and effects on cytocompatibility at different printing conditions. Finally, the ability of the materials to recover to their original viscosity after extrusion was examined using rotational recovery rheological measurements. Taken together, these assessment techniques revealed significant insights into the requirements for printable inks and shear conditions present during the extrusion process and allow the rapid and reproducible characterisation of a wide variety of inks for bioprinting.
AUTHOR DeSimone, Elise and Schacht, Kristin and Pellert, Alexandra and Scheibel, Thomas
Title Recombinant spider silk-based bioinks [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Biofabrication
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Abstract
Bioinks, 3D cell culture systems which can be printed, are still in the early development stages. Currently, extensive research is going into designing printers to be more accommodating to bioinks, designing scaffolds with stiff materials as support structures for the often soft bioinks, and modifying the bioinks themselves. Recombinant spider silk proteins, a potential biomaterial component for bioinks, have high biocompatibility, can be processed into several morphologies and can be modified with cell adhesion motifs to enhance their bioactivity. In this work, thermally gelled hydrogels made from recombinant spider silk protein encapsulating mouse fibroblast cell line BALB/3T3 were prepared and characterized. The bioinks were evaluated for performance in vitro both before and after printing, and it was observed that unprinted bioinks provided a good platform for cell spreading and proliferation, while proliferation in printed scaffolds was prohibited. To improve the properties of the printed hydrogels, gelatin was given as an additive and thereby served indirectly as a plasticizer, improving the resolution of printed strands. Taken together, recombinant spider silk proteins and hydrogels made thereof show good potential as a bioink, warranting further development.
AUTHOR Levato, Riccardo and Webb, William R. and Otto, Iris A. and Mensinga, Anneloes and Zhang, Yadan and van Rijen, Mattie and van Weeren, René and Khan, Ilyas M. and Malda, Jos
Title The bio in the ink: cartilage regeneration with bioprintable hydrogels and articular cartilage-derived progenitor cells
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings Acta Biomaterialia
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DOI/URL URL
AUTHOR Abbadessa, Anna and Landín, Mariana and Oude Blenke, Erik and Hennink, Wim E. and Vermonden, Tina
Title Two-component thermosensitive hydrogels: Phase separation affecting rheological behavior [Abstract]
Year 2017
Journal/Proceedings European Polymer Journal
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DOI/URL URL
Abstract
Abstract Extracellular matrices are mainly composed of a mixture of different biopolymers and therefore the use of two or more building blocks for the development of tissue-mimicking hydrogels is nowadays an attractive strategy in tissue-engineering. Multi-component hydrogel systems may undergo phase separation, which in turn can lead to new, unexpected material properties. The aim of this study was to understand the role of phase separation on the mechanical properties and 3D printability of hydrogels composed of triblock copolymers of polyethylene glycol (PEG) and methacrylated poly(N-(2-hydroxypropyl) methacrylamide-mono/dilactate) (pHPMAlac) blended with methacrylated hyaluronic acid (HAMA). To this end, hydrogels composed of different concentrations of PEG/pHPMAlac and HAMA, were analyzed for phase behavior and rheological properties. Subsequently, phase separation and rheological behavior as function of the two polymer concentrations were mathematically processed to generate a predictive model. Results showed that PEG/pHPMAlac/HAMA hydrogels were characterized by hydrophilic, HAMA-richer internal domains dispersed in a more hydrophobic continuous phase, composed of PEG/pHPMAlac, and that the volume fraction of the dispersed phase increased by increasing HAMA concentration. Storage modulus, yield stress and viscosity increased with increasing HAMA concentration for low/medium HAMA contents (≤0.75% w/w), while a further increase of HAMA resulted in a decrease of the mentioned properties. On the other hand, by increasing the concentration of PEG/pHPMAlac these rheological properties were enhanced. The generated models showed a good fitting with experimental data, and were used to identify an exemplary 3D printability window for PEG/pHPMAlac/HAMA hydrogels, which was verified by rheological characterization and preparation of 3D printed scaffolds. In conclusion, a clear relationship between phase separation and rheological behavior in these two-component hydrogels can be described by complex functions of the two polymer concentrations. The predictive model generated in this study can be used as a valid tool for the identif