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J Biomed Mater Res. 2001 Aug;56(2):195-207.

Modulation of epithelial tissue and cell migration by microgrooves.

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CSIRO Molecular Science, P.O. Box 184, North Ryde, New South Wales 1670, Australia.


We used a polystyrene substratum to study the response of migrating epithelium to 1- or 5-microm depth microgrooves with groove/ridge widths of 1, 2, 5, or 10 microm. The migration of a tissue sheet was enhanced along the microgrooves, while migration across the microgrooves was inhibited. Changing the depth of the microgrooves had a greater effect on migration than alteration of the groove/ridge width. The migration of epithelial cells from a confluent monolayer culture followed a similar pattern to that of intact epithelial tissue. Cellular extensions generally followed the microgroove direction by tracking along the top of the ridges or following the ridge walls, as revealed by scanning electron microscopy. Actin filaments within the basal cell layer of the tissue were aligned with the microgrooves, unlike filaments in the superficial layers that did not appear to be affected by the presence of underlying microgrooves. The basal cell layer of the tissue conformed to the contours of the microgroove following migration. However, the ultrastructure of the tissue above the ridges resembled that of tissue on a flat surface. We concluded that surface microgrooves have the potential to direct the migration of immediately adjacent epithelial tissue, the effect of which is to guide epithelial tissue on the surface of implanted biomaterials.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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