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Nanoimprint fabrication of polymer cell substrates with combined microscale and nanoscale topography
Schematic of the hot embossing process. In this process a silicon micromachined master is brought into contact with a polymer substrate under heat and force. After the desired embossing time, the mold is cooled and removed leaving replicate features in the polymer substrate.
Schematic of the second embossing. A nanopatterned nickel master is brought into contact with the micropatterned polymer under lower temperature and higher pressure than the previous embossing process. The mold is then cooled and removed from the substrate leaving nanogrooves on the micromesas.
Scanning electron micrographs of double embossed substrates. Top image shows nanogrooves on the micromesas running parallel to the microgrooves. Bottom image shows nanogrooves running perpendicular to the microgrooves.
Alignment results for cells cultured on microgrooves, microgrooves with parallel nanogrooves, and microgrooves with perpendicular nanogrooves. Results show alignment trends for microgroove spacings of 2 and . and (#) denote significant interactions between perpendicular nanogrooves and both microgrooves only and parallel nanogrooves for 2 and , respectively. The significant interaction parameters for 2 and patterns were less than 0.02 and 0.01, respectively. Alignment of cells on nanogrooves and a flat control surface is also shown for reference.
Immunofluorescence image of cell cytoskeletons on microgrooved surface with nanogrooves running perpendicular. Cell extensions are visible, running along the nanogrooves while cell bodies appear to be aligning to the microgrooves.
Scanning electron microscope (SEM) image of cell on microgrooves with nanogrooves running perpendicular. Cell extensions are extending out from the cell body and running along the nanogrooves. Extension also spans groove with no nanopattern to mesa with nanopatterning.
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