Engineering Functionalized Polymer Microwells for

Selective Stem Cell Adhesion

Sabrina Montero-Pancera1, Vanessa Trouillet2, Andre Petershans1,3, Dagmar Fichtner3, Andrey Lyapin5, Michael Bruns2, Thomas Schimmel4,

Stefan Reichlmaier5, Peter G. Weidler1, Doris Wedlich3, Hartmut Gliemann1


1Institute of Functional Interfaces, 2Institute of Material Sciences III, 3Zoological Institute II, 4Institute of Nanotechnology, KIT, 76131 Karlsruhe, Germany

5Physical Electronics GmbH, 85737 Ismaning, Germany


BildA novel, recently patented method [[1]] to produce submicro-walled chemically activated polystyrene (PS) microwells by one-step UV-lithography under ambient conditions which are selectively coated with gelatin is introduced. The dimensions as well as the shape of the resulting structures are both tunable merely by the irradiation time through one and the same mask (see AFM images below of two PS surfaces irradiated for different times through the same mask). It is shown that the superposition of radiation induced (i) oxidation, (ii) cross linking and (iii) removal of polystyrene result in the formation of microscaled, oxidized polymer wells separated by polymer walls, whereas the polymer walls are formed below the mask structures. The topographical changes induced by the UV-irradiation are investigated by AFM and ellipsometry. Chemical characterization is carried out by XPS, fluorescence microscopy and TOF-SIMS. After the irradiated samples were treated with gelatin solution it was found, that stem cells selectively attach to the irradiated areas. This is due to the selective immobilization of the gelatin on the irradiated polymer areas [[2]].

[[1]] German patent, DE102007007719A1, 2008


[[2]] S.M. Pancera, V. Trouillet, M. Bruns, Th. Schimmel, P.G. Weidler, A. Petershans, D. Fichtner, A. Lyapin, S. Reichlmaier, D. Wedlich, H. Gliemann, Langmuir, DOI: 10.1021/la902563d