Our laboratory develops novel smart fibers, textiles and membranes for body monitoring, drug delivery and tissue engineering applications. A special focus is to develop physical, biological, and numerical skin/body models for the analysis of the interactions between materials and the human skin to optimize the protection and ergonomics of systems.
materials-skin interactions, biomimetic materials, smart membranes and textiles, tissue engineering, skin models
Skin-simulating materials, structures, and computational models are fundamental elements for in vitro skin research, which are of great interest for many applications ranging from tissue engineering to pharmaceutical, cosmetic, and textile industries. In particular, the development of 3D tissue-engineered skin grafts (TE-SGs) recapitulating the multi-layered skin structure can allow us to circumvent the extensive use of animal models, providing a viable alternative to current preclinical development practices. Therefore, we have been working on multi-layered hybrid membranes that can support the co-culturing of skin cells for such 3D TE-SGs. For this purpose, our research activities include the design and synthesis of bioactive polymers, as well as further development of skin-mimetic structures via various polymer-processing technologies (e.g., electrospinning, microfluidic wet spinning, and injection molding, etc.). This enables us to tailor the biochemical, biophysical and topographical features of the resultant scaffolds for skin cell co-culturing. In collaboration with SKINTEGRITY.CH partners, we envision to target specific skin disease models (e.g. autoimmune diseases) based on such multi-layered hybrid membrane materials, which can potentially lead to better understanding of their pathogenic mechanisms, as well as more effective treatment options for many patients.
SKINTEGRITY.CH Principal Investigators are in bold: