(599bj) Investigating the Physiological Implications of a Nanotopographically-Induced Alignment of Endothelial Cells

Authors: 
Fischer, J., University of Kentucky
Murner, A., University of Kentucky
Gray, L., University of Kentucky
Dziubla, T., University of Kentucky
Trinkle, C., University of Kentucky
Anderson, K. W., University of Kentucky

It has recently been suggested that the nanotopography of a surface might alone be sufficient to promote a more physiologically-relevant morphology and surface chemistry of endothelial cells in vitro, thereby eliminating the need for cumbersome flow adaption efforts. In this work, we investigated the efficacy of a groove-aligned human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) monolayer to determine if nanotopography alone could create a better mimic of the in vivo endothelium than statically cultured cells on standard glass substrates. Results suggest that while nano-scale grooves can be implemented to ensure a more unidirectional, elongated growth of HUVECs, the surface expressions of four common leukocyte and tumor cell adhesion molecules (ICAM-1, VCAM-1, E-selectin, P-selectin) were not significantly upregulated as compared to traditional cytokine-induced upregulation by tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α).  The inherent decoupling of morphology and surface chemistry highlights an important structure/function mismatch incurred when generating biomimetic devices that should not be overlooked.

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