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Faculty of Engineering Science

Biofabrication – Prof. Dr. Leonid Ionov

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4D biofabrication

We develop methods for 3D bioprinting of novel polymeric biomaterials  as well as polymer-cell structures with advaced properties. Particular focus is printing of stimuli-responsive polymers and hydrogels. We use fused filament printing, extrusion printing of hydrogels, ink-jet printing as well as stereolithography. Our particular focus is 4D biofabrication, which is fabrication of cellular structures by shape-transformation of 3D objects. We pioneered fabrication of 4D biofabrication using most important biodegradable polymers, which are widely used in tissue engineering, such as gelatin, alginate and hyaluronic acid. 

Scheme of the fabrication of self-folding hydrogel-based (cell-laden) tubes via 4D bioprinting: a) printing of mathacrylated alginate or hyaluronic acid  solutions without/with living cells onto different substrates; b) crosslinking of the printed films with green light (530 nm) and mild drying; c) instant folding into tubes upon immersion of the crosslinked films in water, PBS, or cell culture media; d) examples of the fabricated self-folding tubes (from right to left): schematic illustrations and representative microscope images of single tubes with/without printed cells formed through the described 4D printing process; photograph of a glass vial containing a large number of self-folded tubes, indicating on the possibility of their large-scale fabrication.

Selected publications

Stroganov, Vladislav; Pant, Jitendra; Stoychev, Georgi; Janke, Andreas; Jehnichen, Dieter; Fery, Andreas; Handa, Hitesh; Ionov, Leonid
4D Biofabrication : 3D Cell Patterning Using Shape-Changing Films
in Advanced Functional Materials vol. 28 (2018) 
doi:10.1002/adfm.201706248 ...

Kirillova, Alina; Maxson, Ridge; Stoychev, Georgi; Gomillion, Cheryl T.; Ionov, Leonid
4D Biofabrication Using Shape-Morphing Hydrogels
in Advanced Materials (2017) 
doi:10.1002/adma.201703443 ...

Apsite, Indra; Stoychev, Georgi; Zhang, Weizhong; Jehnichen, Dieter; Xie, Jin; Ionov, Leonid
Porous stimuli-responsive self-folding electrospun mats for 4D biofabrication
in Biomacromolecules vol. 18 (2017) issue 10. - pp. 3178-3184
doi:10.1021/acs.biomac.7b00829 ...

Stroganov, Vladislav; Zakharchenko, Svetlana; Sperling, Evgeni; Meyer, Anne K.; Schmidt, Oliver G.; Ionov, Leonid
Biodegradable Self-Folding Polymer Films with Controlled Thermo-Triggered Folding
in Advanced Functional Materials vol. 24 (2014) issue 27. - pp. 4357-4363
doi:10.1002/adfm.201400176 ...

Zakharchenko, Svetlana; Puretskiy, Nikolay; Stoychev, Georgi; Waurisch, Christian; Hickey, Stephen G.; Eychmüller, Alexander; Sommer, Jens-Uwe; Ionov, Leonid
Stimuli-responsive hierarchically self-assembled 3D porous polymer-based structures with aligned pores
in Journal of Materials Chemistry B vol. 1 (2013) issue 13. - pp. 1786-1793
doi:10.1039/C2TB00231K ...

Zakharchenko, Svetlana; Sperling, Evgeni; Ionov, Leonid
Fully Biodegradable Self-Rolled Polymer Tubes : a Candidate for Tissue Engineering Scaffolds
in Biomacromolecules vol. 12 (2011) issue 6. - pp. 2211-2215
doi:10.1021/bm2002945 ...

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