175. continuous optical printing of cell-laden constructs within microfluidic architectures

Department: NanoEngineering
Research Institute Affiliation: Graduate Program in Materials Science and Engineering
Faculty Advisor(s): Shaochen Chen

Primary Student
Name: Justin David Liu
Email: jdl015@ucsd.edu
Phone: 858-534-5602
Grad Year: 2017

Microfluidic platforms have greatly benefited the biological and medical fields; however, standard practices require a high cost of entry in terms of facilities, time, and training. Furthermore, the inability to fabricate within microfluidic devices increases costs by requiring the production of multiple devices and limits scientific applications. The use of three-dimensional (3D) printing techniques has greatly enhanced the ability to iterate and build devices with unique functions. In this work, a variable height micromixer (VHM) was fabricated using projection 3D-printing combined with soft lithography. Theoretical models and flow experiments using fluorescent dye demonstrate that altering the local z-heights of VHM improved mixing at lower flow rates than simple geometries. Mixing of two fluids occurs with a flow rate as low as 320 μL min−1 within VHM geometries whereas the planar geometries requires a flow rate of 2.4 mL min−1 before mixing occurs. Beyond mixing, the VHM is designed to also be a 3D culturing platform, allowing users to 3D-print complex architectures within the device. The ability to produce 3D tissue models within a microfluidic system could offer a unique platform for medical diagnostics and disease modeling.

Industry Application Area(s)
Life Sciences/Medical Devices & Instruments | Materials

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