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Kalpana Nagpal, Anand Mohan, Sourav Thakur, Pradeep Kumar
Dendrimers, commonly referred to as polymeric trees, offer endless opportunities for biotechnological and biomedical applications. By controlling the type, length, and molecular weight of the core, branches and end groups, respectively, the chemical functionality and topology of dendrimeric archetypes can be customized which further can be applied to achieve required solubility, biodegradability, diagnosis and other applications. Given the physicochemical variability of the dendrimers and their hybrids, this review attempts to discuss a full spectrum of recent advances and strides made by these "perfectly designed structures"...
February 15, 2018: Artificial Cells, Nanomedicine, and Biotechnology
Arunkumar Pitchaimani, Tuyen Duong Thanh Nguyen, Santosh Aryal
Therapeutic efficacy of a systemic drug delivery largely depends on the targeting design of the delivery system, which tackles with circulatory traffic and prevents the nonspecific distribution of the drug in the wide range of vital organs. A drawing attention has been given to a biomimetic cloaking of the synthetic drug delivery nanoparticle using mammalian cell-ghosts, which has shown the installment of the biological complexity of the original cells thereby acting as naïve cells, to precisely delivery drug to the intended target...
January 16, 2018: Biomaterials
Rajeev J Kant, Kareen L K Coulombe
The field of tissue engineering has turned towards biomimicry to solve the problem of tissue oxygenation and nutrient/waste exchange through the development of vasculature. Induction of angiogenesis and subsequent development of a vascular bed in engineered tissues is actively being pursued through combinations of physical and chemical cues, notably through the presentation of topographical and growth factor cues. Presenting angiogenic signals in a spatiotemporal fashion is beginning to generate improved vascular networks, which will allow for the creation of large and dense engineered tissues...
January 22, 2018: Acta Biomaterialia
Ying-Chu Chen, Yu-Kuei Hsu, Radian Popescu, Dagmar Gerthsen, Yan-Gu Lin, Claus Feldmann
Full-spectrum utilization of diffusive solar energy by a photocatalyst for environmental remediation and fuel generation has long been pursued. In contrast to tremendous efforts in the UV-to-VIS light regime of the solar spectrum, the NIR and IR areas have been barely addressed although they represent about 50% of the solar flux. Here we put forward a biomimetic photocatalyst blueprint that emulates the growth pattern of a natural plant-a peapod-to address this issue. This design is exemplified via unidirectionally seeding core-shell Au@Nb nanoparticles in the cavity of semiconducting H x K1-xNbO3 nanoscrolls...
January 16, 2018: Nature Communications
Changsu Kim, Tommaso Ruberto, Paul Phamduy, Maurizio Porfiri
Robotics is continuously being integrated in animal behaviour studies to create customizable, controllable, and repeatable stimuli. However, few systems have capitalized on recent breakthroughs in computer vision and real-time control to enable a two-way interaction between the animal and the robot. Here, we present a "closed-loop control" system to investigate the behaviour of zebrafish, a popular animal model in preclinical studies. The system allows for actuating a biologically-inspired 3D-printed replica in a 3D workspace, in response to the behaviour of a zebrafish...
January 12, 2018: Scientific Reports
Ja Hye Myung, Sin-Jung Park, Andrew Z Wang, Seungpyo Hong
Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) have received a great deal of scientific and clinical attention as a biomarker for diagnosis and prognosis of many types of cancer. Given their potential significance in clinics, a variety of detection methods, utilizing the recent advances in nanotechnology and microfluidics, have been introduced in an effort of achieving clinically significant detection of CTCs. However, effective detection and isolation of CTCs still remain a tremendous challenge due to their extreme rarity and phenotypic heterogeneity...
December 13, 2017: Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews
Kyle T Gabriel, Joseph D Sexton, Christopher T Cornelison
Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are known to be produced by a wide range of microorganisms and for a number of purposes. Volatile-based microbial inhibition in environments such as soil is well-founded, with numerous antimicrobial VOCs having been identified. Inhibitory VOCs are of interest as microbial control agents, as low concentrations of gaseous VOCs can elicit significant antimicrobial effects. Volatile organic compounds are organic chemicals typically characterized as having low molecular weight, low solubility in water, and high vapor pressure...
December 14, 2017: Journal of Applied Microbiology
Lewis D Blackman, Spyridon Varlas, Maria C Arno, Alice Fayter, Matthew I Gibson, Rachel K O'Reilly
Enzyme loading of polymersomes requires permeability to enable them to interact with the external environment, typically requiring addition of complex functionality to enable porosity. Herein, we describe a synthetic route towards intrinsically permeable polymersomes loaded with functional proteins using initiator-free visible light-mediated polymerization-induced self-assembly (photo-PISA) under mild, aqueous conditions using a commercial monomer. Compartmentalization and retention of protein functionality was demonstrated using green fluorescent protein as a macro-molecular chromophore...
October 31, 2017: ACS Macro Letters
Jitka Dadová, Kuan-Jung Wu, Patrick G Isenegger, James C Errey, Gonçalo J L Bernardes, Justin M Chalker, Lluís Raich, Carme Rovira, Benjamin G Davis
Biomimicry valuably allows the understanding of the essential chemical components required to recapitulate biological function, yet direct strategies for evaluating the roles of amino acids in proteins can be limited by access to suitable, subtly-altered unnatural variants. Here we describe a strategy for dissecting the role of histidine residues in enzyme active sites using unprecedented, chemical, post-translational side-chain-β,γ C-N bond formation. Installation of dehydroalanine (as a "tag") allowed the testing of nitrogen conjugate nucleophiles in "aza-Michael"-1,4-additions (to "modify")...
November 22, 2017: ACS Central Science
Yi Sun, Hong Kai Yap, Xinquan Liang, Jin Guo, Peng Qi, Marcelo H Ang, Chen-Hua Yeow
Soft pneumatic actuators (SPAs), as novel types of motion drivers for robotic devices, excel in many applications, such as rehabilitation and biomimicry, which demand compliance and softness. To further expand their scope of utilization, the SPAs should be customizable to meet the distinctive requirements of different applications. This article proposes a novel perspective on the SPA working mechanism based on stiffness distribution and then presents a versatile method called stiffness customization and patterning (SCP) for SPA body stiffness layout as a novel attempt to customize SPAs with distinctive properties...
September 2017: Soft Robotics
Steffi Deuerling, Sabine Kugler, Moritz Klotz, Cordt Zollfrank, Daniel Van Opdenbosch
Bioinspiration, biomorphy, biomimicry, biomimetics, bionics, and biotemplating are terms used to describe the fabrication of materials or, more generally, systems to solve technological problems by abstracting, emulating, using, or transferring structures from biological paradigms. Herein, a brief overview of how the different terminologies are being typically applied is provided. It is proposed that there is a rich field of research that can be expanded by utilizing various novel approaches for the guidance of living organisms for "bio-mediated" material structuring purposes...
November 27, 2017: Advanced Materials
Sahishnu Patel, Jon-Michael Caldwell, Stephen B Doty, William N Levine, Scott Rodeo, Louis J Soslowsky, Stavros Thomopoulos, Helen H Lu
The enthesis, or interface between bone and soft tissues such as ligament and tendon, is prone to injury and often does not heal post-surgical intervention. Interface tissue engineering represents an integrative strategy for regenerating the native enthesis by functionally connecting soft and hard tissues and thereby improving clinical outcome. This review focuses on integrative and cell-instructive scaffold designs that target the healing of the two most commonly injured soft tissue-bone junctions: the tendon-bone interface (e...
November 17, 2017: Journal of Orthopaedic Research: Official Publication of the Orthopaedic Research Society
I Bilem, L Plawinski, P Chevallier, C Ayela, E D Sone, G Laroche, M C Durrieu
Engineering artificial extracellular matrices, based on the biomimicry of the spatial distribution of proteins and growth factors within their native microenvironment, is of great importance for understanding mechanisms of bone tissue regeneration. Herein, photolithography is used to decorate glass surfaces with subcellular patterns of RGD and BMP-2 ligands; two mimetic peptides recognized to be involved in stem cells osteogenesis. The biological relevance of well-defined RGD and BMP-2 patterned surfaces is evaluated by investigating the differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) into osteoblasts, in the absence of induction media...
April 2018: Journal of Biomedical Materials Research. Part A
Ritu Raman, Rashid Bashir
The discipline of biological design has a relatively short history, but has undergone very rapid expansion and development over that time. This Progress Report outlines the evolution of this field from biomimicry to biofabrication to biohybrid systems' design, showcasing how each subfield incorporates bioinspired dynamic adaptation into engineered systems. Ethical implications of biological design are discussed, with an emphasis on establishing responsible practices for engineering non-natural or hypernatural functional behaviors in biohybrid systems...
September 7, 2017: Advanced Healthcare Materials
Muyang Sun, Nier Wu, Haifeng Chen
The human body has difficulty repairing damaged dental enamel, an acellular hard tissue. Researchers have sought feasible biomimicry strategies to repair enamel defects; however, few have been successfully translated to clinical applications. In this study, we propose a new method for achieving rapid enamel mineralization under a near-physiological environment. Through treatment with a laser and chelating agents, 15 μm crystals could be grown compactly on an enamel substrate in less than 20 min. The compact crystal layer had similar structure as native enamel prisms and high elastic modulus...
August 29, 2017: Scientific Reports
Grace X Gu, Flavia Libonati, Susan D Wettermark, Markus J Buehler
Creating materials with strength and toughness has been a long-sought goal. Conventional engineering materials often face a trade-off between strength and toughness, prompting researchers seeking to overcome these limitations to explore more sophisticated materials, such as composites. This paradigm shift in material design is spurred by nature, which exhibits a plethora of heterogeneous materials that offer outstanding material properties, and many natural materials are widely regarded as examples of high-performing hybrid materials...
December 2017: Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
Emily B Kennedy, Bor-Kai Hsiung, Nathan B Swift, Kwek-Tze Tan
Hedgehogs are agile climbers, scaling trees and plants to heights exceeding 10m while foraging insects. Hedgehog spines (a.k.a. quills) provide fall protection by absorbing shock and could offer insights for the design of lightweight, material-efficient, impact-resistant structures. There has been some study of flexural properties of hedgehog spines, but an understanding of how this keratinous biological material is affected by various temperature and relative humidity treatments, or how spine color (multicolored vs...
August 5, 2017: Journal of the Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials
Martins Otikovs, Marlene Andersson, Qiupin Jia, Kerstin Nordling, Qing Meng, Loren B Andreas, Guido Pintacuda, Jan Johansson, Anna Rising, Kristaps Jaudzems
Biomimetic spinning of artificial spider silk requires that the terminal domains of designed minispidroins undergo specific structural changes in concert with the β-sheet conversion of the repetitive region. Herein, we combine solution and solid-state NMR methods to probe domain-specific structural changes in the NT2RepCT minispidroin, which allows us to assess the degree of biomimicry of artificial silk spinning. In addition, we show that the structural effects of post-spinning procedures can be examined...
October 2, 2017: Angewandte Chemie
Riccardo Levato, William R Webb, Iris A Otto, Anneloes Mensinga, Yadan Zhang, Mattie van Rijen, René van Weeren, Ilyas M Khan, Jos Malda
Cell-laden hydrogels are the primary building blocks for bioprinting, and, also termed bioinks, are the foundations for creating structures that can potentially recapitulate the architecture of articular cartilage. To be functional, hydrogel constructs need to unlock the regenerative capacity of encapsulated cells. The recent identification of multipotent articular cartilage-resident chondroprogenitor cells (ACPCs), which share important traits with adult stem cells, represents a new opportunity for cartilage regeneration...
August 4, 2017: Acta Biomaterialia
Rowan P Rimington, Andrew J Capel, Steven D R Christie, Mark P Lewis
The capability to 3D print bespoke biologically receptive parts within short time periods has driven the growing prevalence of additive manufacture (AM) technology within biological settings, however limited research concerning cellular interaction with 3D printed polymers has been undertaken. In this work, we used skeletal muscle C2C12 cell line in order to ascertain critical evidence of cellular behaviour in response to multiple bio-receptive candidate polymers; polylactic acid (PLA), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and polycarbonate (PC) 3D printed via fused deposition modelling (FDM)...
August 22, 2017: Lab on a Chip
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