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Research Papers

Projection Microfabrication of Three-Dimensional Scaffolds for Tissue Engineering

[+] Author and Article Information
Li-Hsin Han, Shaochen Chen

Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712

Gazell Mapili, Krishnendu Roy

Department of Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng. 130(2), 021005 (Mar 07, 2008) (4 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2823079 History: Received May 30, 2007; Revised November 08, 2007; Published March 07, 2008

This article presents a micromanufacturing method for direct projection printing of three-dimensional scaffolds for applications in the field of tissue engineering by using a digital micromirror-array device (DMD) in a layer-by-layer process. Multilayered scaffolds are microfabricated using curable materials through an ultraviolet (UV) photopolymerization process. The prepatterned UV light is projected onto the photocurable polymer solution by creating the “photomask” design with a graphic software. Poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate is mixed with a small amount of dye (0.3wt%) to enhance the fabrication resolution of the scaffold. The DMD fabrication system is equipped with a purging mechanism to prevent the accumulation of oligomer, which could interfere with the feature resolution of previously polymerized layers. The surfaces of the predesigned multilayered scaffold are covalently conjugated with fibronectin for efficient cellular attachment. Our results show that murine marrow-derived progenitor cells successfully attached to fibronectin-modified scaffolds.

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Copyright © 2008 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

The curing of monomer with and without the addition of the UV dye. (A) Theoretical model: The curing depth CD decreases when the absorption constant is increased after the addition of dye. (B) Photopatterning of PEGDA on a glass slide. The pores of a honeycomb structure are sealed by unwanted curing caused by scattered light. (C) Patterning the same monomer with the addition of UV dye Tinuvin 234 at a concentration of 0.2wt%. The geometry of the honeycomb structure had increased feature resolution.

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Figure 2

The schematics of the DMD fabrication system showing the fabrication scheme (A)–(C) and the patterns of the scaffold cross section (inset)

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Figure 3

Scanning electron micrographs in (A)–(C) depict a multilayered scaffold with interconnective, hexagonal-shaped porosity. An extracellular matrix secreted by attached D1 cells is visible in (C). D1 cells were stained with a fluorescent tracer dye prior to seeding onto fibronectin-modified scaffolds. (D) shows a reconstructed 3D image from fluorescence confocal microscopy, indicating that cells attached efficiently to the microfabricated scaffold.

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