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Engineered Natural Biomaterials for In Vitro 3D Cell Culture and Biomedical Applications
Release time:November 3, 2023

Topic: Engineered Natural Biomaterials for In Vitro 3D Cell Culture and Biomedical Applications

Speaker: Dr. Subhas Kundu, University of Minho, Portugal

Time: Monday, November 6, 2023, 9:00-10:30 a.m.

Venue: Conference Room 205, Building 4, Xueyuan Road Campus


We perform cell culture on a 2D system classically to grow or maintain cells in a monolayer. The question arises for implementing 3D in vitro cell culture, which is a more accurate system in in vivo conditions. It is essential to design the appropriate biomaterials replicating the biological, chemical, and mechanical complexities of the native 3D micro environment. The development of intelligent biomaterials in different forms of matrices (scaffolds, hydrogels, spheres and nanofiber mats) can provide a solution to the complex structures of the extracellular domain in terms of structural support and composition. Silk protein fibroins and sericins are used for 3D cell culture and 3D disease modelling as pure or blended with other biomaterials. These materials support their physiological resemblance, including mechanical properties, biodegradability, and biocompatibility. We investigated how silk protein fibroins and sericins, in pure or combined with other biopolymers, support the growth of different types of cells (bone, cartilage, cardiomyocytes, skin and stem cells) for attachment, growth, differentiation and tissue regeneration, including disease cells. The co-culture of cancer cells with fibroblasts and mesenchymal stem cells mimics better the tumour microenvironment and its response to drugs. Developing faster and more efficient drug screening 3D in vitro platforms, including improving cell culture systems, is needed. This in vitro system may overcome the limitations of using 2D cell cultures and animals in the first stage of drug screening. The presentation will deal with the current trends in designing 3D biomaterials for different types of cell cultures, disease modelling in vitro and drug screening.

About the Speaker:

Subhas C Kundu is a Research Coordinator at I3Bs – Research Institute on Biomaterials, Biodegradables and Biomimetics, University of Minho, Portugal. Before this position, he was the European Commission's European Research Area Chair (ERA Chair). He obtained his MSc and PhD in Genetics from Banaras Hindu University, India. Kundu received post-doctoral training at the Institute of Molecular Biology, Moscow; York University, Canada; Medical University, Lubeck, Germany; and Brunel University, United Kingdom. He was the Founder, First Head and Full Professor at the Department of Biotechnology, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT), India and a Distinguished Invited Professor at Dankook University, Korea. In his early teaching career, he was an Assistant Professor to a Full Professor and Head of the Department of Life Sciences at Manipur University, Imphal. He taught genetics, cell and molecular biology, and recombinant DNA technology to undergraduates, post-graduates and pre-doctoral students. Kundu has published 250 major research articles in peer-reviewed high-impact factor journals such as BiomaterialsActa BiomaterialiaAdvanced Functional MaterialsAdvanced Healthcare MaterialsAdvanced MaterialsProgress in Polymer ScienceExperimental Cell ResearchJ Biological ChemistryBiotechnology AdvancesAdvanced Drug Delivery ReviewsBiomacromolecules, and ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces. Kundu has an H-index of 75 and 25,050 citations. His interest is in 3D cancer modelling and drug screening, including naturally derived silk biomaterial matrices.

School of Materials Science and Engineering