A novel bioreactor for the dynamic stimulation and mechanical evaluation of multiple tissue-engineered constructs

Trevor J. Lujan, Kyle M. Wirtz, Chelsea S. Bahney, Steven M. Madey, Brian Johnstone, Michael Bottlang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Scopus citations


Systematic advancements in the field of musculoskeletal tissue engineering require clear communication about the mechanical environments that promote functional tissue growth. To support the rapid discovery of effective mechanostimulation protocols, this study developed and validated a mechanoactive transduction and evaluation bioreactor (MATE). The MATE provides independent and consistent mechanical loading of six specimens with minimal hardware. The six individual chambers accurately applied static and dynamic loads (1 and 10Hz) in unconfined compression from 0.1 to 10N. The material properties of poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate hydrogels and bovine cartilage were measured by the bioreactor, and these values were within 10% of the values obtained from a standard single-chamber material testing system. The bioreactor was able to detect a 1-day 12% reduction (2kPa) in equilibrium modulus after collagenase was added to six collagenase sensitive poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate hydrogels (p=0.03). By integrating dynamic stimulation and mechanical evaluation into a single batch-testing research platform, the MATE can efficiently map the biomechanical development of tissue-engineered constructs during long-term culture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)367-374
Number of pages8
JournalTissue Engineering - Part C: Methods
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2011


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biomedical Engineering

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