Mechanical Stimulation Bioreactor

Mechanical Stimulation Bioreactor


Michael Andro, Biomedical Engineering
Matt Gauvain, Biomedical Engineering
David Gembara, Biomedical Engineering
Mark Weber, Biomedical Engineering


Gary Bledsoe, Ph.D., Chair and Professor of Biomedical Engineering

The resident cells of tissues such as articular cartilage and the intervertebral disk are constantly being mechanically loaded in the body. As such, when they are isolated and removed from a mechanically loaded environment they tend to experience decreased rates of proliferation and an alteration of phenotype. This phenotypic alteration makes it extremely difficult to evaluate these cells in a tissue engineering or regenerative medicine setting. This project will design, fabricate, and test a mechanical stimulation bioreactor intended to maintain cell phenotypes and promote proliferation. The bioreactor must be versatile to accommodate isolated cells on tissue culture plastic, an electrospun scaffold, or contained within a hydrogel.