TiO2 Nanotube Arrays as platform for long-term organotypic culture and mechanical characterization of retina explants – from imaging to mechanical responseWednesday (08.05.2019) 15:30 - 15:50 Part of:
TiO2 nanotube arrays constitute highly versatile scaffolds that are suited for long-term organotypic culture of neuronal tissue, including retina explants and beyond. While tube diameter and surface roughness  are central parameters for successful culture and have to be optimized for every specific tissue type, super hydrophilicity ensures nutrition supply by a wetting layer of culture medium even in absence of complicated perfusion systems . Clearly adhesion between tissue explants and nanotube scaffolds plays a key role for maintaining tissue integrity. Lift-off approaches are, on the other hand, desirable for tissue transfer and nanotube regeneration, respectively. Employing extensive environmental scanning electron microscopy (ESEM) as well as laser scanning microscopy (LSM) studies we address both aspects and demonstrate that UV-light exposure and enzymatic treatment are ideally suitable for nanotube regeneration. Based on these findings, we present an assay for concurrent biomechanical straining and in situ imaging employing ESEM and LSM. Thus, we will be able to find correlations between structural components of retina and their variation in tissue mechanics. This will pave the way for in vitro studies on tissue regeneration and surgery techniques in combination with drug testing.