The Engineering Research Center (ERC) for Advanced Technologies for the Preservation of Biological Systems (ATP-Bio) aims to “stop biological time” and radically extend the ability to bank and transport cells, aquatic embryos, tissue, skin, whole organs, micro physiological systems (“organs-on-a-chip”), and even whole organisms through a team approach to build advanced biopreservation technologies.
For more information about ATP-Bio, please visit https://www.atp-bio.org/
About ATP-Bio at Berkeley
ATP-Bio at Berkeley consists of three primary labs:
1) The Kevin Healy Lab, which studies Isochoric cryopreservation of hiPSCs-derived cardiac micro physiological systems (MPS). Microphysiological systems (MPS) have emerged as a powerful in vitro culturing platform that incorporates microfluidic flows to provide tissues with culture medium circulation at volumes that are computationally predictable and more physiologically relevant than static well plate culture. This makes MPS amenable to studying the effects of cryoprotective agents and distribution within a dense tissue cultured in the MPS. However, most of the characterizations and monitoring of tissues in the MPS rely on the optical way using microscopy techniques and off-chip analytical assays. In this regard, electrical sensor-integrated MPS allows real-time on-chip analysis with improved temporal resolution and quantification. Electrical impedance sensing (EIS) is a useful tool to study cell behaviors, including cell growth, monolayer permeability, and migration, especially for endothelial cells. EIS technique can provide an analytical tool for vascular MPS with endothelial cells by enabling the quantification of cell growth and monolayer barrier function. Vascular MPS with endothelial cells can play a role as in-vitro testbeds to optimize the cryopreservation protocol of vascularized systems for organ transplantation, regenerative medicine, and long-term cryopreservation
2) The Boris Rubinsky Lab, which works on Isochoric supercooled biopreservation and 3D robotic bioprinting.
One of the primary challenges of biopreservation is reducing the temperature to the greatest extent possible while avoiding the damage imparted by the formation and crystallization of ice. Confining water under constant volume fundamentally alters both its equilibrium and non-equilibrium phase behavior. The result is a stable two-phase water-ice equilibrium at subzero temperatures as well as enhanced stability of the metastable supercooled state. The lab researches how the process of freezing actually occurs, examines the theory of heterogeneous nucleation, and looks to discover ways to manipulate non-equilibrium phase change processes.
3D bioprinting is a fabrication method that involves the layer-by-layer deposition of biomaterials and cells. 3D bioprinted scaffolds can be used outside of the body, such as for disease models and drug development, or can be implanted into the body to replace damaged organs and or tissue. Advances in 3D bioprinting will bring this promising technique to the clinic and address the growing shortage of donor organs and tissue.
3) The Chris Dames Lab, researches Thermal Opportunities in Cryopreserved Systems. In thermal and acoustic measurement schemes, the lab aims to provide the ability to probe the center of bulk samples, or those not accessible by traditional means (e.g., in isochoric chambers). Additionally, the lab looks to revisit past efforts to measure the thermal conductivity of biological tissues and examine opportunities to further knowledge of low-temperature biological samples and advance cryopreservation efforts.
Learn more about ATP-Bio here
ATP-Bio in the News:
The 2023 Fung Institute MEng Capstone Innovation Award is awarded to the MEng capstone team who has most effectively demonstrated the relevance of the problem they are trying to solve, the originality of their proposed solution, and the potential of their project’s impact.
Our team has been recognized for their project on “3d Cryoprinting” and has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Fung Institute MEng Capstone Innovation Award. Through your team’s hard work, creativity, and initiative, you have demonstrated the fundamental values of the Institute and exemplified what we hope the MEng experience can be–culminating in a tangible technological advancement.
Winning Team: 3D Cryoprinting
Students: Joseph Roux de Bézieux, Fiona Le Gaonac’h, Gakpe Mckenzie, Ania Boukhezna
Advisor: Boris Rubinsky
Recent Articles & Published Papers:
Published papers from ATP-Bio at Berkeley from Boris Rubinsky Lab, Chris Dames Lab, and Healy Lab.
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