For bioartificial organ devices containing cells packed at high density, establishing suitable nutrient transport pathways is an important engineering challenge. In the case of a tissue engineered liver densely packed with entrapped hepatocytes, the limited transport distance of the nutrient oxygen, restricts the dimensions of the device’s cellular space. This study focuses on improving the functional performance of such devices by enabling enhanced oxygen transport. This enhanced O2 transport is achieved using a technique we developed for increasing the porosity of extracellular matrix (ECM) [1–3]. By combining computational and experimental approaches, the results predict and test the effectiveness of our technique in improving nutrient (e.g., oxygen) flow and cell performance within densely packed liver tissue engineering systems.

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