The BIOS Lab-on-a-Chip chair ("Miniaturized systems for biomedical and environmental applications") aims at the research and development of Lab-on-a-Chip (LOC) systems. The applied stem cell technology (AST) group aims making patient-specific replicas of the human body, so that every patient can get tailor-made medicine. Both groups are embedded within both the MESA+ institute for Nanotechnology and the TechMed institute. MESA+ is one of the world's largest nanotechnology research institutes; and it's the largest research institute in this field in the Netherlands. TechMed is the University of Twente's research Centre for Biomedical Technology and Technical Medicine.
Research in this project will be part of the "NXTGEN Hightech, Biomedical Production Technologies"
growth fund project funded by the Dutch government. This project is a continuation of our recently published work, see the following links for details:
The field:** Organ-on-Chip (OoC) is a game-changing approach in which human cells are cultured in microfluidic chips simulating and predicting the response of healthy and diseased human tissues. OoC has the potential to revolutionize today's biomedical testing procedures that often involve ethically challenged animal testing and, most importantly, lead to variable results. Despite its promise, OoC adoption is hampered by profound technical and functional limitations. In this multidisciplinary project, engineers and biomedical researchers join forces to overcome these limitations by developing a novel OoC platform based on modular microfluidic building blocks (MFBB) and fluidic circuit boards (FCB) .The aim:
High-throughput experimentation is essential to this field, as OoC technology is used to e.g. find new stem cell differentiation protocols , to screen new pharmaceuticals, or screen toxicological effects. Our approach to this problem is to use pneumatically actuated valves to address many individual cell culture chambers individually by multiplexing . In this project we want to push multiplexing technology by improving our valve technology. This includes possible development of electrostatically driven valves, and by extending the range of materials we use to fabricate our microfluidic chips.