ChEMS Seminar: Biological 3D Printing - Strategies for Organizing and Interfacing with Model Cellular Systems
Department of Chemistry
University of Texas at Austin, TX
Abstract: Cellular studies using model in vitro systems limit environmental complexities that may obscure input-outcome relationships. Unfortunately, conventional cell cultures often lack spatial, physical and chemical properties of environments relevant to native cellular responses, and may not provide important capabilities for dynamically altering cell experience in real time. To address the need for more relevant model systems, my laboratory has developed a micro-3D printing platform for organizing and interfacing with cultured cells with high levels of spatial and temporal control. In this approach, pulsed near-infrared light is used to create high-resolution protein-based cellular landscapes in a direct-write, multiphoton-promoted photocrosslinking process patterned using a digital micromirror device. High-resolution three-dimensional environments for bacterial and mammalian cell types are created either in advance of cellular application, or in the presence of viable cells, to create defined enclosures and adherent biological surfaces that enable organization of multispecies cellular communities and that more accurately reproduce mechanical, chemical and convective properties of native environments. Such 3D-printed protein-based environments can be modulated by chemical, thermal and light switches that can be used to, for example, dynamically control cellular containment volumes and to perform in situ topographic imprinting of surfaces. I will discuss applications of this technology to investigations of bacterial pathogenic behaviors and morphological development of mammalian cells.
Bio: Jason Shear completed his doctorate in chemistry at Stanford University as an HHMI predoctoral fellow in 1995 and was an NSF postdoctoral fellow in the Applied Physics Department (1995-96). He joined the Chemistry Department at the University of Texas at Austin in 1996, and was the Texas Instruments Visiting Professor in bioengineering at Rice University (2010-11). Shear has co-authored numerous patents, has been recognized with various awards, and was noted for a "Chemical Development of the Year" by C&E News for his work on microsecond separations. His current work focuses on the use of microscopic 3D printing for organizing and perturbing model cellular systems in culture for investigating properties of individual cells and emergent characteristics of small cellular ensembles. He currently serves as co-chair of the Beckman Foundation Scientific Advisory Council.
Host: Allon Hochbaum