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Microfluidic-Based 3D Engineered Microvascular Networks and Their Applications in Vascularized Microtumor Models

by Xiaolin Wang 1,2,3,*, Qiyue Sun 1 and Jianghua Pei 1
1
Department of Micro/Nano Electronics, School of Electronic Information and Electrical Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
2
National Key Laboratory of Science and Technology on Micro/Nano Fabrication, Department of Micro/Nano Electronics, School of Electronic Information and Electrical Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
3
Key Laboratory for Thin Film and Microfabrication Technology (Ministry of Education), Department of Micro/Nano Electronics, School of Electronic Information and Electrical Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Micromachines 2018, 9(10), 493; https://doi.org/10.3390/mi9100493
Received: 21 August 2018 / Revised: 25 September 2018 / Accepted: 25 September 2018 / Published: 27 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Organs-on-chips)
The microvasculature plays a critical role in human physiology and is closely associated to various human diseases. By combining advanced microfluidic-based techniques, the engineered 3D microvascular network model provides a precise and reproducible platform to study the microvasculature in vitro, which is an essential and primary component to engineer organ-on-chips and achieve greater biological relevance. In this review, we discuss current strategies to engineer microvessels in vitro, which can be broadly classified into endothelial cell lining-based methods, vasculogenesis and angiogenesis-based methods, and hybrid methods. By closely simulating relevant factors found in vivo such as biomechanical, biochemical, and biological microenvironment, it is possible to create more accurate organ-specific models, including both healthy and pathological vascularized microtissue with their respective vascular barrier properties. We further discuss the integration of tumor cells/spheroids into the engineered microvascular to model the vascularized microtumor tissue, and their potential application in the study of cancer metastasis and anti-cancer drug screening. Finally, we conclude with our commentaries on current progress and future perspective of on-chip vascularization techniques for fundamental and clinical/translational research. View Full-Text
Keywords: microfluidics; vascularization; organ-on-a-chip; vascularized tumor model; tissue engineering microfluidics; vascularization; organ-on-a-chip; vascularized tumor model; tissue engineering
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Wang, X.; Sun, Q.; Pei, J. Microfluidic-Based 3D Engineered Microvascular Networks and Their Applications in Vascularized Microtumor Models. Micromachines 2018, 9, 493.

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