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Biotechnol Appl Biochem. 2012 Mar-Apr;59(2):97-105. doi: 10.1002/bab.1010. Epub 2012 Mar 27.

Microbioreactors to manipulate oxygen tension and shear stress in the microenvironment of vascular stem and progenitor cells.

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Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering and Johns Hopkins Physical Sciences-Oncology Center, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA.


The dynamics of dissolved oxygen (DO) and shear stress in the vasculature microenvironment play a major role in determining the fate of stem cells in adults and during early embryonic development. In this study, we present a microbioreactor (MBR) that provides independent control over oxygen tension and shear stress in cultures of stem and progenitor cell types. We first describe the design principles and use a model-driven approach for the optimization of the MBR geometry and operating conditions prior to its fabrication and assembly. We then demonstrate the utilization of the MBR for culturing adult human endothelial progenitors, human umbilical vein endothelial cells, and human embryonic stem cell-derived smooth muscle cells under different DO and shear stress levels.

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