A microdevice for the creation of patent, three-dimensional endothelial cell-based microcirculatory networks

Lien T. Chau, Barbara E. Rolfe, Justin J. Cooper-White

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Microvascular network formation is a significant and challenging goal in the engineering of large three-dimensional artificial tissue structures. We show here the development of a fully patent, 3D endothelial cell (microvascular) microfluidic network that has a single inlet and outlet, created in only 28 h in a microdevice involving fluid flow equivalent to natural vasculature. Our microdevice features a tailored "multi-rung ladder" network, a stylized mimic of an arterial-to-venous pedicle, designed to also allow for systematic and reproducible cell seeding. Immunofluorescence staining revealed a highly contiguous endothelial monolayer (human umbilical vein endothelial cells) throughout the whole network after 24 h of continuous perfusion. This network persisted for up to 72 h of culture, providing a useful template from which the effects of surface chemistry, fluid flow, and environmental conditions on the development of artificial vascular networks ex vivo may be rapidly and robustly evaluated.

Original languageEnglish
Article number034115
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 20 Sept 2011
Externally publishedYes

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