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A Finite Element Model for Drop-on-Demand Printing of Designer Hybrid Cardiovascular Constructs

[+] Author Affiliations
Tao Xu

Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center

Catalin Baicu, Michael Zile

Medical University of South Carolina

Brian Manley, Thomas Boland

Clemson University

Paper No. IMECE2005-79082, pp. 75-81; 7 pages
  • ASME 2005 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Manufacturing Engineering and Materials Handling, Parts A and B
  • Orlando, Florida, USA, November 5 – 11, 2005
  • Conference Sponsors: Manufacturing Engineering Division and Materials Handling Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4223-1 | eISBN: 0-7918-3769-6
  • Copyright © 2005 by ASME


A Finite element model (FEM) was constructed and used to predict the mechanical properties of hybrid cardiovascular tissue engineering constructs. The model allows implementing 3D structures with desired porosities, mechanical and chemical properties. CAD models where designed using the FEM, with mechanical properties matching those of cardiac tissue. Contractile cardiac hybrids have been fabricated by arranging alternate layers of hydrogels and mammalian cardiovascular cells according to these CAD models using inkjet printers. Alginate hydrogels with controlled microshell structures were built by spraying cross-linkers onto ungelled alginic acid using inkjet printers. Cells were seen to attach to the inside of these microshells. The cells remained viable in constructs as thick as 1 cm due to the programmed porosity. Microscopic and macroscopic contractile function of cardiomyocytes sheets was observed in vitro. These results suggest that the printing method could be used for hierarchical design of functional cardiac patches, balanced with porosity for mass transport and structural support.

Copyright © 2005 by ASME



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