Recent work on photolithography-based fabrication of active micro-scale origami structures has demonstrated devices capable of mechanical dexterity and sensing at the 100µm – 1mm range. A promising application of these systems is to explore the mechanical behavior and growth of living biological matter. In this project, we will first tailor the design and fabrication of the micro-origami to ensure their reliable function in physiological environments. Next, we plan to explore the connection of these devices to three types of living matter: muscle fibers, multicellular spheroids, and extracellular matrices (ECMs). The micro-origami devices will be configured to mechanically test the biological samples by applying tensile, compressive, and shear stress/strain in both quasi static and cyclic regimes. Additionally, we will use the micro-origami to sense mechanical stresses in samples that are undergoing growth or experiencing expansion/contraction due to external stimuli. The proposed micro-origami systems offer a new platform for in vitro testing that could give insight to both the mechanics of living matter and their behavior under mechanical stimulation.
Funding: $60K (2023)
Goal: The goal of this project is to explore micro-fabricated origami devices for the mechanical stimulation, testing, and sensing of in vitro living matter.
Token Investors: Evgueni Filipov, Kenn Oldham, Allen Liu, and Carlos Aguilar
Project ID: 1131