Investigating the mechanobiology of nanotopography-induced cell behaviour, and applying to direct stem cell differentiation and in tissue engineering applications.

Scaffold with Appropriate Cues for Tissue Engineering

Cells are surrounded by various nano-scaled topographical and biochemical cues in their microenvironment during the natural tissue development. An ideal scaffold for tissue engineering application should mimic the natural microenvironment for natural tissue and present the appropriate biochemical and topographical cues in a spatially controlled manner. Recent findings underscore the phenomenon that mammalian cells do respond to nanoscale features on a synthetic surface. Our previous studies show nanotopography can significantly influence cellular behaviours ranging from attachment to proliferation and differentiation. The understanding of how each of these two cues could influence the stem cell behaviour would aid the development of the next generation scaffold for tissue engineering and stem cell applications. We are interested to investigate the underlying mechanobiology of nanotopography-induced cell behaviour and to apply this knowledge to direct stem cell differentiation and in tissue engineering applications.

Research Projects

To investigate how the biophysical and biochemical cues regulate cell behavior, we are pursuing the following research program

  1. Interaction of adult and embryonic stem cells with nanotopography
  2. Fabrication of nano-structures for biomedical applications
  3. Nanotopography-induced differentiation of stem cells for neuronal, cornea and vascular tissue engineering