A key challenge in engineering tissue constructs is integrating adequate vascular networks to prevent necrosis.  A microcirculation supply is not only necessary for the exchange of nutrients and waste, but it is often coupled with many functions of the organs. To address this challenge, we use a direct ink write system to print complex geometries of high cell density of 3D tissues with a vasculature. Our bioinks, mostly derived from natural extracellular matrices, are optimized to be amenable to creating a diversity of tissue mimetics with specific physiologically relevant stiffness. Current efforts include integrating tissue of interest (i.e. blood brain barrier) with our vascularized printed tissue platform to create organ-specific microvascular networks.

A presentation by Monica Moya, Ph.D.