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Biomedical Engineering / Biomedizinische Technik

Joint Journal of the German Society for Biomedical Engineering in VDE and the Austrian and Swiss Societies for Biomedical Engineering and the German Society of Biomaterials

Editor-in-Chief: Dössel, Olaf

Editorial Board: Augat, Peter / Habibović, Pamela / Haueisen, Jens / Jahnen-Dechent, Wilhelm / Jockenhoevel, Stefan / Knaup-Gregori, Petra / Lenarz, Thomas / Leonhardt, Steffen / Plank, Gernot / Radermacher, Klaus M. / Schkommodau, Erik / Stieglitz, Thomas / Boenick, Ulrich / Jaramaz, Branislav / Kraft, Marc / Lenthe, Harry / Lo, Benny / Mainardi, Luca / Micera, Silvestro / Penzel, Thomas / Robitzki, Andrea A. / Schaeffter, Tobias / Snedeker, Jess G. / Sörnmo, Leif / Sugano, Nobuhiko / Werner, Jürgen /

IMPACT FACTOR 2017: 1.096
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Ahead of print


Volume 57 (2012)

A versatile perfusion bioreactor and endothelializable photo cross-linked tubes of gelatin methacryloyl as promising tools in tissue engineering

Birgit Huber
  • University of Stuttgart, Institute of Interfacial Process Engineering and Plasma Technology, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Eva Hoch
  • University of Stuttgart, Institute of Interfacial Process Engineering and Plasma Technology, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Iván Calderon / Kirsten Borchers
  • University of Stuttgart, Institute of Interfacial Process Engineering and Plasma Technology, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Petra J. Kluger
  • Corresponding author
  • Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB, Stuttgart, Germany
  • Reutlingen University, Alteburgstraße 150, Reutlingen 72762, Germany, Phone: +49 7121–271 2061
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2018-09-18 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/bmt-2018-0015


Size and function of bioartificial tissue models are still limited due to the lack of blood vessels and dynamic perfusion for nutrient supply. In this study, we evaluated the use of cytocompatible methacryl-modified gelatin for the fabrication of a hydrogel-based tube by dip-coating and subsequent photo-initiated cross-linking. The wall thickness of the tubes and the diameter were tuned by the degree of gelatin methacryl-modification and the number of dipping cycles. The dipping temperature of the gelatin solution was adjusted to achieve low viscous fluids of approximately 0.1 Pa s and was different for gelatin derivatives with different modification degrees. A versatile perfusion bioreactor for the supply of surrounding tissue models was developed, which can be adapted to several geometries and sizes of blood-vessel mimicking tubes. The manufactured bendable gelatin tubes were permeable for water and dissolved substances, like Nile Blue and serum albumin. As a proof of concept, human fibroblasts in a three-dimensional collagen tissue model were successfully supplied with nutrients via the central gelatin tube under dynamic conditions for 2 days. Moreover, the tubes could be used as scaffolds to build-up a functional and viable endothelial layer. Hence, the presented tools can contribute to solving current challenges in tissue engineering.

Keywords: dip-coating; endothelial cells; fibroblasts; methacryl-modified gelatin; perfusion bioreactor; tubular perfusion system; vascularized tissue engineering


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About the article

aKirsten Borchers and Petra J. Kluger: These authors contributed equally to this work.

Received: 2018-01-29

Accepted: 2018-08-06

Published Online: 2018-09-18

Author Statement

Research funding: This work was supported by the European Commission under the Seventh Framework Program, Funder Id: 10.13039/100011102 (grant agreement no. 263416).

Conflict of interest: Authors state no conflict of interest.

Informed consent: All patients gave a written agreement according to the permission of the Landesärztekammer Baden-Württemberg (F-2012-078; for normal skin from elective surgeries).

Ethical approval: The research related to human use complied with all the relevant national regulations and institutional policies, was performed in accordance with the tenets of the Helsinki Declaration, and has been approved by the local Ethics Committee.

Citation Information: Biomedical Engineering / Biomedizinische Technik, 20180015, ISSN (Online) 1862-278X, ISSN (Print) 0013-5585, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/bmt-2018-0015.

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