Reversible on-demand cell alignment using reconfigurable microtopography
Traditional cell culture substrates consist of static, flat surfaces although in vivo, cells exist on various dynamic topographies. We report development of a reconfigurable microtopographical system compatible with cell culture that is comprised of reversible wavy microfeatures on poly(dimethylsiloxane). Robust reversibility of the wavy micropattern is induced on the cell culture customized substrate by first plasma oxidizing the substrate to create a thin, brittle film on the surface and then applying and releasing compressive strain, to introduce and remove the microfeatures, respectively. The reversible topography was able to align, unalign, and realign C2C12 myogenic cell line cells repeatedly on the same substrate within 24 h intervals, and did not inhibit cell differentiation. The flexibility and simplicity of the materials and methods presented here provide a broadly applicable capability by which to investigate and compare dynamic cellular processes not yet easily studied using conventional in vitro culture substrates.
Journal: Biomaterials - Volume 29, Issue 11, April 2008, Pages 1705–1712