Facile Route for 3D Printing of Transparent PETg-Based Hybrid Biomicrofluidic Devices Promoting Cell Adhesion

Mehta, Viraj and Vilikkathala Sudhakaran, Sukanya and Rath, Subha Narayan (2021) Facile Route for 3D Printing of Transparent PETg-Based Hybrid Biomicrofluidic Devices Promoting Cell Adhesion. ACS Biomaterials Science & Engineering, 7 (8). pp. 3947-3963. ISSN 2373-9878

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3D printing has emerged as a promising fabrication technique for microfluidic devices, overcoming some of the challenges associated with conventional soft lithography. Filament-based polymer extrusion (popularly known as fused deposition modeling (FDM)) is one of the most accessible 3D printing techniques available, offering a wide range of low-cost thermoplastic polymer materials for microfluidic device fabrication. However, low optical transparency is one of the significant limitations of extrusion-based microfluidic devices, rendering them unsuitable for cell culture-related biological applications. Moreover, previously reported extrusion-based devices were largely dependent on fluorescent dyes for cell imaging because of their poor transparency. First, we aim to improve the optical transparency of FDM-based microfluidic devices to enable bright-field microscopy of cells. This is achieved using (1) transparent polymer filament materials such as poly(ethylene terephthalate) glycol (PETg), (2) optimized 3D printing process parameters, and (3) a hybrid approach by integrating 3D printed microfluidic devices with cast poly(dimethylsiloxane) (PDMS) blocks. We begin by optimizing four essential 3D printing process parameters (layer height, printing speed, cooling fan speed, and extrusion flow), affecting the overall transparency of 3D printed devices. Optimized parameters produce exceptional optical transparency close to 80% in 3D printed PETg devices. Next, we demonstrate the potential of FDM-based 3D printing to fabricate transparent micromixing devices with complex planar and nonplanar channel networks. Most importantly, cells cultured on native 3D printed PETg surfaces show excellent cell attachment, spreading, and proliferation during 3 days of culture without extracellular matrix coating or surface treatment. Next, we introduce L929 cells inside hybrid PETg-PDMS biomicrofluidic devices as a proof of concept. We demonstrate that 3D printed hybrid biomicrofluidic devices promote cell adhesion, allow bright-field microscopy, and maintain high cell viability for 3 days. Finally, we demonstrate the applicability of the proposed fabrication approach for developing 3D printed microfluidic devices from other FDM-compatible transparent polymers such as polylactic acid (PLA) and poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA). ©

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IITH Creators:
IITH CreatorsORCiD
Rath, Subha Narayanhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-3414-2328
Item Type: Article
Additional Information: V.M. is supported by the Prime Minister’s Research Fellowship (PMRF) provided by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD, Govt. of India). S.V.S. is supported by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research Fellowship (CSIR, India). This work was funded by PMRF, MHRD, India. We thank the National Centre for Cell Science (NCCS, Pune, India) for providing the L929 cell line.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 3D printing; biocompatibility; cell adhesion; microfluidic device; PETg; transparency
Subjects: Biomedical Engineering
Divisions: Department of Biomedical Engineering
Depositing User: . LibTrainee 2021
Date Deposited: 23 Aug 2022 07:18
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2022 07:18
URI: http://raiith.iith.ac.in/id/eprint/10264
Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1021/acsbiomaterials.1c00633
OA policy: https://v2.sherpa.ac.uk/id/publication/31995
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