Controllable 3D alginate hydrogel patterning via visible-light induced electrodeposition

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Original languageEnglish
Article number25004
Journal / PublicationBiofabrication
Issue number2
Online published21 Apr 2016
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016


The fabrication of alginate hydrogel in 3D has recently received increasing attention owing to its distinct efficacy as biocompatible scaffold for 3D cell culture, biomedical and tissue engineering. We report a controllable 3D alginate hydrogel patterning method by developing a visible-light induced electrodeposition chip. The chip mainly consists of a photoconductive titanyl phthalocyanine (TiOPc) anode plate, an indium tin oxide (ITO) cathode plate and the mixed solution (1% sodium alginate and 0.25% CaCO3 nano particles) between them. After a designed visible-light pattern is projected onto the TiOPc plate, the produced H+ by electrolysis will trigger Ca2+ near the anode (illuminated area), and then the gelation of calcium alginate patterns, as desired, happens controllably. In addition, we further establish an exponential model to elucidate the gel growth v.s. time and current density. The results indicate that the proposed method is able to fabricate various 3D alginate hydrogel patterns in a well controllable manner, and maintain the laden cells at high survival rate (>98% right after gel formation). This research paves an alternative way for 3D alginate hydrogel patterning with high controllability and productivity, which would benefit the research in biomedical and tissue engineering.

Research Area(s)

  • 3D alginate hydrogel patterning, visible-light induced chip, electrodeposition, controllable 3D gel fabrication