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Vascularized Microfluidics and the Blood–Endothelium Interface

by Christopher A. Hesh 1, Yongzhi Qiu 2,3,4,5,*,† and Wilbur A. Lam 2,3,4,5,*,†
1
Department of Radiology & Imaging Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
2
Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
3
Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, Aflac Cancer Center and Blood Disorders Service of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
4
Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
5
Parker H. Petit Institute of Bioengineering and Bioscience, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally.
Micromachines 2020, 11(1), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi11010018
Received: 12 November 2019 / Revised: 19 December 2019 / Accepted: 20 December 2019 / Published: 23 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Blood-on-a-Chip)
The microvasculature is the primary conduit through which the human body transmits oxygen, nutrients, and other biological information to its peripheral tissues. It does this through bidirectional communication between the blood, consisting of plasma and non-adherent cells, and the microvascular endothelium. Current understanding of this blood–endothelium interface has been predominantly derived from a combination of reductionist two-dimensional in vitro models and biologically complex in vivo animal models, both of which recapitulate the human microvasculature to varying but limited degrees. In an effort to address these limitations, vascularized microfluidics have become a platform of increasing importance as a consequence of their ability to isolate biologically complex phenomena while also recapitulating biochemical and biophysical behaviors known to be important to the function of the blood–endothelium interface. In this review, we discuss the basic principles of vascularized microfluidic fabrication, the contribution this platform has made to our understanding of the blood–endothelium interface in both homeostasis and disease, the limitations and challenges of these vascularized microfluidics for studying this interface, and how these inform future directions. View Full-Text
Keywords: blood vessel; microvasculature; endothelium; lab-on-chip; microfluidics blood vessel; microvasculature; endothelium; lab-on-chip; microfluidics
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Hesh, C.A.; Qiu, Y.; Lam, W.A. Vascularized Microfluidics and the Blood–Endothelium Interface. Micromachines 2020, 11, 18.

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