The next PhyLife talk will be given by Jyotsana Priyadarshani, a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, KU Leuven, Belgium, on 6th of November at 11:00 am at Lykeion. Please find the details of the talk below.
Title: Engineering integrative microfluidic organ chips for modeling vascular anomalies
Abstract: The concept of ‘organ-on-a-chip’ was tossed around to combine microengineering technology with cell biology to establish in vitro models that can precisely mimic in-vivo characteristics of human organs and explore therapeutic responses. An essential component of such a system is vascularization as microvessels and capillaries are distributed through organs almost entirely, supplementing the tissues with nutrients & oxygen and stimulating various mechanical cues in turn, affecting endothelial cells’ phenotype. My primary research has been focused on developing a perfusable, microvascularized platform for recreating the physiological environment of vascular anomalies. One such disease is cerebral cavernous malformations (CCM) occurring in the venous capillaries, i.e., the low-flow region of the brain and spinal cord. The CCMs are comprised of abnormally enlarged and leaky capillary cavities formed upon clonal expansion of genetic mutations of endothelial cells followed by their abnormal proliferation and invasion into the underlying extracellular matrix (ECM). While invading through the ECM, there cells displace the matrix fibers by exerting active forces, which can be measured by using 3D Traction Force Microscopy (TFM). Hence, the present work further advances the vascularized CCM-on-a-chip model by integrating it with the 3D TFM technique to quantify cell-generated forces.