Thèse - Orthotropic cellulosic based composites for bone and cartilage tissue engineering

Description :
Research Objectives :
The aim of this project is to develop multilayer cellulosic-based composites that can recapitulate the main structural features of cartilage to improve cartilage tissue engineering (Fig. 1). Typical multilayer structures of the cartilage are targeted, combining cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs) with collagen fibrils and/or self-assembled alpha-lactalbumin amyloid fibers, suspended in a synthetic extracellular matrix (ECM) made of photopolymerized hyaluronic acid or aginate. Novel processing methods that combine an innovative ultrafiltration/ultrasound (UF/US) process with hydrogel photocrosslinking will be implemented in order to reproduce the well-known orthotropic organization of the cartilage, comprising : (i) a superficial zone composed of tightly packed and aligned objects parallel to the articular surface ; (ii) an intermediate transitional zone with obliquely organized objects ; and (iii) a deep zone with objects arranged perpendicular to the articular surfaces. This orthotropic organization should increase the material resistance to shear, tensile and compressive forces, which will be studied by in-situ SAXS, SALS, and ex-situ MEB, XRD and tensile/compression tests. Cytocompatibility tests will be performed at RMeS to assess the compatibility of the designed biomaterials and that of the UF/US process for CNC orientation. The optimization of the different processes (filtration, ultrasound, photopolymerization) and the evaluation of their cytocompatibility will open these novel cellulosic based composites to tissue engineering applications.

Profile of the PhD expected :
The candidate must hold a Master 2 with skills in fluid mechanics, soft matter and/or processes. Experience in the structural/mechanical characterization of colloids and polymers, in hydrogel design and/or cell culture, would be appreciated.

Reference : FilmOrhto-Cartilage

Date de démarrage : 01 octobre 2022

Durée : 3 ans

Contacter :
Frédéric Pignon
Laboratoire Rhéologie et Procédés BP 53, Domaine Universitaire, 38041 Grenoble Cedex 9 France
email :

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