Light-assisted direct-write of 3D functional biomaterials

Kolin C. Hribar, Pranav Soman, John Warner, Peter Chung, Shaochen Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

197 Scopus citations


Light-assisted 3D direct-printing of biomaterials and cellular-scaffolds has the potential to develop novel lab-on-a-chip devices (LOCs) for a variety of biomedical applications, from drug discovery and diagnostic testing to in vitro tissue engineering and regeneration. Direct-writing describes a broad family of fabrication methods that typically employ computer-controlled translational stages to manufacture structures at multi-length scales. This review focuses on light-assisted direct-write fabrication for generating 3D functional scaffolds with precise micro- and nano-architecture, using both synthetic as well as naturally derived biomaterials. Two bioprinting approaches are discussed in detail-projection printing and laser-based systems-where each method is capable of modulating multiple scaffold parameters, such as 3D architecture, mechanical properties (e.g. stiffness), Poisson's ratio, chemical gradients, biological cell distributions, and porosity. The light-assisted direct-writing techniques described in this review provide the reader with alternative approaches to fabricate 3D biomaterials for utility in LOCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)268-275
Number of pages8
JournalLab on a Chip
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 21 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • General Chemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering


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