Breaking it Down: How Microgels can Accelerate 3D Bioprinting of Tissues

Microgel materials, also known as jammed or granular materials, are highly bioactive compared to their bulk gel equivalent. Advantages of microgels stem from their macroporosity, which is typically 1000x greater than that of bulk gels. Cell migration, cell viability, and proliferation greatly benefit from the increased diffusional properties afforded by their natural void space. These jammed materials also have excellent rheological properties, allowing them to be highly printable using extrusion bioprinting.

At the event applications of microgels in tissue engineering are presented and it is shown how features such as microgel aspect ratio, composition, and growth factor binding affinity can be harnessed to create more nuanced signals to the resident cells to create more accurate tissue models.

Key Insights

  • Introduction of architectural cues into hydrogels is needed to engineer functional tissues
  • Properties of microgels which are import: aspect ratio, composition, printability

Speaker

Marcy Zenobi-Wong, Group Head, Tissue Engineering and Biofabrication Lab, ETH Zürich, Switzerland

 

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