Biomagune designs an efficient system for harvesting cells for biomedical use

Monday, March 14th, 2016

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A scientific project conducted by the Basque Centre for Cooperative Research in Biomaterials, CIC biomaGUNE, has developed a system based on the use of infrared light and plasmonic nanoparticles for the efficient harvesting of laboratory-grown cells.

This method aims to efficiently produce the basic unit of life so that the cells can be used in regenerative medicine and tissue engineering.

The development is based on the use of infrared light that interacts with plasmonic nanoparticles and generates sufficient energy to detach the cells from the substrates on which they have been grown without damage and with an almost 100% survival rate during the cell retrieval process.

The research work has been conducted by Juan José Giner-Casares, Malou Henriksen-Lacey and Isabel García, under the direction of CIC biomaGUNE Scientific Director Luis Liz-Marzán.

Cell culture is a widely used technique, both in industry and in research, in areas such as virology, biotechnology, immunology, pharmacology and for producing artificial tissues. “The main problem arises when the time comes to collect these cells and tissues, due to the highly invasive nature of the detachment processes, which means that many of these biological bodies die before they are able to be used”, explains researcher Juan José Giner-Casares.

The expert affirms that this research is “important for improving the viability of cells in any type of culture”, but especially in the case of cells of high added value. “Cell integrity is absolutely fundamental for implanting tissue culture in humans”, states the expert. The study has been published in the International Edition of the prestigious German scientific journal Angewandte Chemie.

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