Kurzweil: Nanopatterned natural biological scaffold for stem cells may allow for softer engineered tissues

Feng Zhao of Michigan Technological University (MTU) has persuaded fibroblasts — cells that make up the extracellular matrix in the body — to make a well-organized nanopatterned scaffold (support structure). This discovery could have major implications for growing engineered tissue to repair or replace virtually any part of our bodies.

In all multicellular organisms, including people, cells make their own extracellular matrix, a complex, nurturing structure that is essential for many biological functions, including growth and healing. But in the lab, scientists attempting to grow tissue must provide an artificial scaffold. [Read more]