Control of Cell Adhesion and Migration using Nanoengineered Substrates
G Harris and E. Jabbaradeh
Department of Chemical Engineering, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are uniquely positioned as the most promising cell source for tissue engineering and cell transplant strategies due to their unique capability of self-renewal as well as being able to differentiate into diverse cell types. However, their use as a therapy is hampered due to the limited understanding of the mechanisms by which cells integrate environmental stimuli. A significant step towards this goal can be achieved through the development of platforms with controllable physical and chemical properties that allow for further exploration of the co-operative involvement of these signals. The focus of this study was the development of nanoengineered substrates with finely controllable ligand density, topographical features and surface stiffness for the study of cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) interactions. To this end, dip-pen-nanolithography (DPN) was employed to create islands of collagen and fibronectin with different size, shape, and spacing. Time-lapse microscopy in combination with immunofluorescent staining was used to monitor stem cell adhesion and migratory characteristics on nanoengineered substrates. In this presentation, we discuss how the interplay between various ECM properties controls cell signaling characteristics that are important in ultimate defining of stem cell lineage commitment.
See more of this Group/Topical: Food, Pharmaceutical & Bioengineering Division