Freie Universität Berlin, Institut für Chemie und Biochemie
Members of the Weinhart Group are working at the interface of Polymer Chemistry, Surface Science, Cell Biology and Tissue Engineering. Accordingly, we are a very interdisciplinary team bringing together experts in the field of chemistry, biology, biotechnology and engineering.
Currently, we are working on cell attractive, thermoresponsive monolayer or gel surfaces with high cell compatibility and short response times for application in cell sheet engineering. Therefore, an indepth characterisation of material surfaces in terms of hydrophilicity, roughness, thickness, softness and biocompatibiliy is essential in order to correlate cellular behaviour of mammalian cells cultured on such surfaces with the material properties of the substrate. Besides common cell culture and subsequent phenotypic or genotypic evaluation of the cell response, we also use AFM studies to measure and quantify attractive forces between cells and surfaces with respect to external parameters, such as exposure time and temperature. Furthermore, we recently got interested in decellularized tissue and its precessing into (bio)printablem bioactive and bioinstructive inks and resins. Our activities advance the 3D printing of tissue models with a particular focus on the human intestine and its inner mucus layer lining.
In the long term our aim is to combine functional surfaces, with 3D printing and dynamic cell culture to biofabricate 3D tissue constructs and evaluate them as an alternative for conventional animal studies in basic and applied science.