Pump‐Less Platform Enables Long‐Term Recirculating Perfusion of 3D Printed Tubular Tissues Journal Articles uri icon

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  • AbstractThe direction and pattern of fluid flow affect vascular structure and function, in which vessel‐lining endothelial cells exhibit variable cellular morphologies and vessel remodeling by mechanosensing. To recapitulate this microenvironment, some approaches have been reported to successfully apply unidirectional flow on endothelial cells in organ‐on‐a‐chip systems. However, these platforms encounter drawbacks such as the dependency on pumps or confinement to closed microfluidic channels. These constraints impede their synergy with advanced biofabrication techniques like 3D bioprinting, thereby curtailing the potential to introduce greater complexity into engineered tissues. Herein, a pumpless recirculating platform (UniPlate) that enables unidirectional media recirculation through 3D printed tubular tissues, is demonstrated.The device is made of polystyrene via injection molding in combination with 3D printed sacrifical gelatin templates. Tubular blood vessels with unidirectional perfusion are firstly engineered. Then the design is expanded to incorporate duo‐recirculating flow for culturing vascularized renal proximal tubules with glucose reabsorption function. In addition to media recirculation, human monocyte recirculation in engineered blood vessels is also demonstrated for over 24 h, with minimal loss of cells, cell viability, and inflammatory activation. UniPlate can be a valuable tool to more precisely control the cellular microenvironment of organ‐on‐a‐chip systems for drug discovery.


  • Zhang, Feng
  • Lin, Dawn SY
  • Rajasekar, Shravanthi
  • Sotra, Alexander
  • Zhang, Boyang

publication date

  • October 2023