Department of Biomedical Engineering

Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

At STEM we aim to understand and predict how mechanical factors influence soft tissue growth, remodelling, damage, and repair. We use this knowledge to (re)build soft tissues and organs within the human body, and to find ways to prevent mechanically-induced soft tissue degeneration.

Modelling and experimentation at length scales from molecule to man

While performing our research at the forefront of soft tissue biomechanics, mechanobiology, and the engineering of living soft biological tissues and organs, we strive to provide a stimulating educational environment for graduate and post-graduate students. Our research is multi-disciplinary at heart, combining concepts from molecular, cell and tissue biology, (patho)physiology, immunology, biomechanics, physics, engineering, and materials science. To translate our fundamental knowledge to (bio)medical applications we actively collaborate with clinical partners, industry, and patient organizations.

Research Lines

Meet some of our Researchers

News

PhD Research Projects

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Guiding renal epithelial cells to controlled tubule formation; the influence of mechanics

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Towards patient-specific material-driven in situ cardiovascular regeneration: The influence of estrogen

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Guiding keratocyte cell alignment and matrix organization through contact guidance

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Manipulation of angiogenesis by using the Notch signaling pathway as an engineering tool

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Can we restore structural cardiac organization?

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Microfluidic mechanical bioinfluence on function of “kidney-on-chip”

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Characterization and modulation of the immune response in in situ cardiovascular tissue engineering

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

In situ cardiovascular tissue engineering: investigating the initiation & early tissue formation

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Guiding cell and matrix organization by scaffold fiber curvature

In this project we will investigate how cells can sense the scaffold fiber curvature and orientation. Furthermore we will explore how we can...

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Notch signaling in cardiovascular tissue

In this PhD project we would like to understand the relationship between Notch signaling, hemodynamic forces and cardiovascular tissue...

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Non-thrombogenicity in in-situ tissue engineered vascular access grafts

The ideal non-thrombogenic structure is the endogenous endothelium. Therefore we aim to create a luminal side of the graft that allows for...

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Tissue homeostasis in in-situ tissue engineered vascular access grafts

To systematically investigate the relative contribution of graft anisotropy and graft degradation to tissue remodeling and architecture, a...

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Supramolecular biomaterials in kidney regeneration and replacement strategies

In the current research we aim at resolving the interactions of the cell with the bioactive supramolecular biomaterial at a microscopic and...

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

Guiding the immune response in in situ tissue engineered vascular access grafts

The InSiTeVx project aims to develop an off-the-shelf, synthetic, biodegradable, AV-graft that will develop in vivo into a living,...

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

The role of vascular hemodynamic loading on the identified link between vimentin and notch signalling in vascular cells

The aim of this project is to understand the integration between the mechanics and cell-cell signalling in vascular tissue architecture and...

Research Project of Soft Tissue Engineering and Mechanobiology

A novel microfluidic breast cancer model to study the relation between the Notch pathway and mechanotransduction in metastasis

In order to overcome these challenges, we aim to develop a novel breast cancer model that incorporates the relevant properties of the...

Student opportunities

Tissue Engineering and Regeneration

In this application area we focus on the engineering and regeneration of load bearing soft tissues, aimed at either the replacement of diseased or malformed tissues, or the development of well-defined in-vitro model systems of tissue growth, adaptation, regeneration and degeneration. Tissues of principle interest are heart valves and small diameter arteries, while new research lines concentrate on biomaterial-driven regeneration of organ functions (heart, kidney, cornea).

Soft Tissue Biomechanics

An important application area of our research into the influence of mechanical loading on damage and adaptation of soft tissues is the investigation of the etiology of pressure ulcers. The ultimate goal here is to identify risk parameters and, in particular, early markers of tissue damage. These markers can be used in biosensors or as leads for bio-molecular imaging. A second research line is focused on the mechanical properties of the top layers of the skin, to understand the interaction of skin with sensors, personal care applications and devices used for trans-epidermal drug delivery.

Labs and Facilities

State-of-the-art technologies and platforms to support the STEM researchers and students are available in the Cell and Tissue Engineering lab. This is a shared research facility that combines standard cell and tissue culture technologies with molecular/cell/tissue analysis, cell and tissue mechanical characterization, cell transfection, life imaging, in house developed bioreactors and micro-tissue platforms, and scaffold manufacturing (spinning, printing) and testing technologies.

In addition, the group houses a fully equipped microscopy facility with advanced fluorescent microscopes and dedicated confocal microscopy set-ups for on-line and prolonged monitoring of living cells and tissue. Through its collaborations within the Materials Technology (MaTe) Institute and with the Institute for Complex Molecular Systems (ICMS), the group has access to the laboratory for Biomechanics, the Materials Engineering facility, the Microfabrication Lab, and the Immuno-engineering facility.

Contact

  • Postal address

    P.O. Box 513
    Department of Biomedical Engineering Eindhoven University of Technology
    5600 MB Eindhoven
    Netherlands
  • Visiting address

    Building 15, Gemini-South (room 4.115) Groene Loper
    Eindhoven University of Technology
    5612 AZ Eindhoven
    Netherlands
  • Secretary