“Toward new tools for cell biology research”
Surface micropatterning is a powerful tool for the design of cell-based assays and sensors, or for fundamental studies of cellular response to environmental cues. Such patterns have proven to be highly valuable for e.g. statistical analysis of the response of cells cultured in a well-controlled microenvironement.
In our lab we design micropatterned surfaces for single cell studies, based on thermoresponsive polymer brushes (PNIPAM). A proper choice of the adhesive pattern shapes, combined with the temperature-dependent swelling properties of PNIPAM, allow us to use the polymer brush as a microactuator which induces gentle cell detachment