Engineering complex microenvironments by tailoring biophysical regulation for tissue engineering applications Public Deposited
The extracellular matrix (ECM) plays a governing role in regulating functional cell and tissue behavior through biochemical and biophysical signaling. Ongoing tissue engineering efforts are focused on understanding these key interactions between cells and their extracellular matrix and recapitulating them to influence cell behavior in therapeutic contexts. Recent advancements in biomaterial engineering and microfabrication strategies have allowed decoupled presentation of various aspects of the ECM such as the biochemical composition, stiffness and microscale geometry in order to establish their individual regulatory functions. However, investigation of cell response to the combinatorial signaling derived from these factors is confounded by the dynamic nature of the interplay between these biophysical factors, particularly under conditions of higher order complexity. These challenges have been addressed here through the development of a novel bioprinting derived strategy for the fabrication of three-dimensional (3D) tissue models in high throughput, while also allowing simultaneous and independent modulation of matrix stiffness and microscale geometry.