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Sitemap > Bulletin Board > Diplomarbeiten, Bachelor- und Masterarbeiten > BT/ST/MT: Mechanical modeling of an active cell culture platform for mechanobiology investigations
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BT/ST/MT: Mechanical modeling of an active cell culture platform for mechanobiology investigations

25.04.2022, Diplomarbeiten, Bachelor- und Masterarbeiten

The Nano- and Microrobotics Lab is looking for a highly motivated, skilled, and enthusiastic master student who is eager to learn new skills in the fields of engineering, biology, and physics. In the Nano- and Microrobotics lab, we focus on engineering novel approaches to mechanically probe different biological structures, such as cells or tissues to understand how cells sense and respond to changes in their physical environment with particular emphasis on stem cell mechanobiology. However, it is challenging to build small scale robotic systems with precise control over exerted forces.

It is proved that mechanical impacts from the extracellular matrix (ECM) can affect cell behaviors. To investigate this, a mechanically active cell culture system was recently established in our lab. This system consists of soft microgels with nanorobotic components that allow application of isotropic forces on single cells in a three-dimensional environment. A challenge that needs to be addressed in the current system is the quantification of generated forces at cell-ECM interface.

In this project, finite element modeling (FEM) will be implemented and optimized to estimate the generated forces in cell encapsulated microgels. To do so the model will be parameterized using experimental data on microgel deformation, acquired via fluorescent microscopy and dynamic light scattering (DLS). Moreover, several mechanical characterization measurements regarding strain and stress relation would be conducted to depict the mechanical impact on the encapsulated cell. Particular attention will be given to the proper integration of acquired data in the FEM model. Depending on your background the topic of the thesis would be adjusted accordingly.
The general working package for this project could look like this:
• Literature research on state of art of mechanical characterization via FEM
• Mechanical measurements of different active cell culture systems
• Configure and validate the model via experimental data

• Knowledge in mechanical modeling via COMSOL is of advantage
• Basic laboratory skills
• Motivated and independent work mentality
• Background in either, Engineering, Chemistry, Physics, Material science, Biology, or related fields

Kontakt: chen.wang@tum.de

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