Electromagnetic fields affect a variety of tissues (e.g. bone, muscle, nerve and skin) and play important roles in a multitude of biological processes. This has inspired the development of electrically conducting devices for biomedical applications, several examples of which have been clinically translated, including: cardiac pacemakers, bionic eyes, bionic ears and electrodes for deep brain stimulation. The MFBBN project aimed to use multiphoton fabrication to print electrically conducting polymer-based materials with nanoscale features that would enable the electrical stimulation of individual nerves, which may be used to treat a variety
of debilitating chronic diseases.
- Preparation of conducting polymer-based materials using multiphoton fabrication on hard and soft/flexible substrates.
- Characterisation of the physicochemical and electrical properties of the materials.
- Validation of the efficacy of the bioelectronic devices to interact with brain tissue ex vivo in collaboration with Frances Edwards at UCL Neuroscience.
The project achieved its aims and objectives by
- printing conducting polymers on hard substrates and soft/flexible substrates, with micron- and nano- scale features and protruding contact points for a power source and biological tissue
- demonstrated the biological utility of the structures by recording a physiological response to electrical stimulation of the brain tissue
“Together this academic-industry partnership has the mutual objective of advancing clinical opportunities in medical technology, advancement of scientific endeavor through publications, and providing security for intellectual property for the purpose of securing a path to commercialisation.”
Dr Daniel Chew, Director