CurvChip - chip platform for investigating cell responses to curved surface features

Ralf Kemkemer 1 , Kerstin Frey 2 , Alena Fischer 3  and Rumen Krastev 4
  • 1 Reutlingen University and Max Planck for Medical Research,, Heidelberg, Germany
  • 2 Reutlingen University,, Reutlingen, Germany
  • 3 Reutlingen Unvierstiy,, Reutlingen, Germany
  • 4 Reulingen Universtiy and NMI Natural- and Medical institute at the University Tübingen,, Reutlingen, Germany


Surface topographies are often discussed as an important parameter influencing basic cell behavior. Whereas most in-vitro studies deal with microstructures with sharp edges, smooth, curved microscale topographies might be more relevant concerning in-vivo situations. Addressing the lack of highly defined surfaces with varying curvature, we present a topography chip system with 3D curved features of varying spacing, curvature radii as well as varying overall dimensions of curved surfaces. The CurvChip is produced by low-cost photolithography with thermal reflow, subsequent (repetitive) PDMS molding and hot embossing. The platform facilitates the systematic invitro investigation of the impact of substrate curvature on cell types like epithelial, endothelial, smooth muscle cells, or stem cells. Such investigations will not only help to further understand the mechanism of curvature sensation but may also contribute to optimize cellmaterial interactions in the field of regenerative medicine.

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Journal + Issues

Current Directions in Biomedical Engineering is an open access journal and closely related to the journal Biomedical Engineering - Biomedizinische Technik. CDBME is a forum for the exchange of knowledge in the fields of biomedical engineering, medical information technology and biotechnology/bioengineering for medicine and addresses engineers, natural scientists, and clinicians working in research, industry, or clinical practice.