Microfluidic Strategies for Design and Assembly of Microfibers and Nanofibers with Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine Applications

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Abstract

Fiber-based materials provide critical capabilities for biomedical applications. Microfluidic fiber fabrication has recently emerged as a very promising route to the synthesis of polymeric fibers at the micro and nanoscale, providing fine control over fiber shape, size, chemical anisotropy, and biological activity. This Progress Report summarizes advanced microfluidic methods for the fabrication of both microscale and nanoscale fibers and illustrates how different methods are enabling new biomedical applications. Microfluidic fabrication methods and resultant materials are explained from the perspective of their microfluidic device principles, including co-flow, cross-flow, and flow-shaping designs. It is then detailed how the microchannel design and flow parameters influence the variety of synthesis chemistries that can be utilized. Finally, the integration of biomaterials and microfluidic strategies is discussed to manufacture unique fiber-based systems, including cell scaffolds, cell encapsulation, and woven tissue matrices.

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