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About 3,000 individuals in the United States are awaiting a donor heart; worldwide, 22 million individuals are living with heart failure. A bioartificial heart is a theoretical alternative to transplantation or mechanical left ventricular support. Generating a bioartificial heart requires engineering of cardiac architecture, appropriate cellular(More)
Culturing cells in a three dimensional hydrogel environment is an important technique for developing constructs for tissue engineering as well as studying cellular responses under various culture conditions in vitro. The three dimensional environment more closely mimics what the cells observe in vivo due to the application of mechanical and chemical stimuli(More)
Naturally derived polymeric biomaterials, such as collagens, silks, elastins, alginates, and fibrins are utilized in tissue engineering due to their biocompatibility, bioactivity, and tunable mechanical and degradation kinetics. The use of these natural biopolymers in biomedical applications is advantageous because they do not release cytotoxic degradation(More)
Although stem cell therapy is a promising treatment for myocardial infarction, the minimal functional improvements observed clinically limit its widespread application. A need exists to maximize the therapeutic potential of these stem cells by first understanding what factors within the infarct microenvironment affect their ability to regenerate the(More)
A primary impediment to cardiac tissue engineering lies in the inability to adequately vascularize the constructs to optimize survival upon implantation. During normal angiogenesis, endothelial cells (ECs) require a support cell to form mature patent lumens and it has been demonstrated that pericytes, vascular smooth muscle cells and mesenchymal stem cells(More)
In this paper, a novel cell stretcher design that mimics the real-time stretch of the heart wall is introduced. By culturing cells under stretched conditions that mimics the mechanical aspects of the native cardiac environment, better understanding on the role of biomechanical signaling on cell development can be achieved. The device utilizes a moving(More)
Understanding the organization and mechanical function of the extracellular matrix (ECM) is critical for the development of therapeutic strategies that regulate wound healing following disease or injury. However, these relationships are challenging to elucidate during remodeling following myocardial infarction (MI) due to rapid changes in cellularity and an(More)
About 3,000 individuals in the United States are awaiting a donor heart; worldwide, 22 million individuals are living with heart failure. A bioartificial heart is a theoretical alternative to transplantation or mechanical left ventricular support. Generating a bioartificial heart requires engineering of cardiac architecture, appropriate cellular(More)
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