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Manufacturing three-dimensional cell scaffolds by two-photon polymerization: strategies for the development of new therapies.

Abstract

Direct laser writing techniques, in particular two-photon absorption polymerization (TPP), have opened up a wide range of research opportunities and applications in tissue engineering, microfluidics, three-dimensional cell culture, etc. With the advent and popularization of ultrashort pulse lasers (fs lasers) and, consequently, the nonlinear effects that can be induced, TPP has become an important tool for the fabrication of complex micrometric structures, with sub-micrometer resolutions. In this project we propose the use of this unique tool for the fabrication of 3D scaffolds with different geometries, roughness and porosities, in order to study the cellular behavior and its interactions with the microstructure, aiming at the development and evaluation of therapeutic targets and pharmacological tests aiming at, for example, the treatment of Abnormally Invasive Placenta (AIP), a condition that has high maternal mortality rates. Throughout the development of this project, the two teams should work synergistically, taking advantage of their complementary experiences with TPP microfabrication, seeking for the manufacture of bio-compatible, functionalized structures of appropriate dimensions, whose fabrication time is as small as possible. While the Photonics Group (IFSC/USP - São Carlos) has experience in the functionalization of polymeric resins and hybrid materials, as well as making microenvironments for the development of cells and bacteria, the Maceió (AL) group has a modern apparatus of microfabrication, capable of producing structures with high quality and speed, in addition to having the collaboration of the Institute of Biological Sciences and Health of UFAL to carry out the biological experiments proposed in this project. (AU)

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