Three-Dimensional Fabrication of Bioelectronic Interfaces
Background Bioelectronic interfaces hold great promise for medicine and research; however, current fabrication methods for electronic or electroactive materials typically involve expensive lithographic masks, complicated stamping, and chemical etching. The assemblies produced via this route are inherently 2-D and have not proven useful for creating complex 3-D assemblies. Additionally, current manufacturing methods for electroactive materials often used as interfaces with biological cells and tissue are limited by the fact that they must be fabricated before the introduction of the biological material. This results in haphazard and poorly controlled interaction/connection between biological an electrical components.
Invention Description This invention presents a new strategy for 3-D micro-fabrication of electronic materials that can be performed under aqueous conditions, promoting compatibility with biological molecules and living cellular systems. Materials fabrication by this route offers unique opportunities for in situ placement of electronic and electrochemical inputs/outputs for communicating with biological systems including potential use in neuronal regeneration, bioassays, bioenergy harvesting, promoting cellular differentiation and manufacturing tissue scaffolds.
Manufacturing process is compatible with biological systems Allows for in situ fabrication of structures Can fabricate biocompatible sub-micron 3-D structures Freeform fabrication Complex, multicomponent synthesis of sensors Allows for fabrication of assemblies for bioenergy harvesting and cellular interfacing
Microfabrication strategy for bioelectronic and electroactive materials Direct-write lithography technique offers exceptional promise as a more direct assembly protocol for fabrication of functional bioelectronic elements Technique accommodates complex shapes, structures and different material assembly chemistries
Market Potential/Applications This technology relates to some of the fastest growing research and commercialization areas and could appeal to companies involved with: Microsurgery Tissue engineering Microfluidics Sustained release and biosensing devices
Development Stage Proof of concept
IP Status One U.S. patent application filed
UT Researcher Jason B. Shear, Ph.D., Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Texas at Austin Ryan T. Hill, BS, Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Texas at Austin Keith J. Stevenson, Ph.D., Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Texas at Austin Jennifer L. Lyon, BS, Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Texas at Austin
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