Digitally tunable physicochemical coding of material composition and topography in continuous microfibres

Edward Kang, Gi Seok Jeong, Yoon Young Choi, Kwang Ho Lee, Ali Khademhosseini, Sang Hoon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

278 Citations (Scopus)


Heterotypic functional materials with compositional and topographical properties that vary spatiotemporally on the micro-or nanoscale are common in nature. However, fabricating such complex materials in the laboratory remains challenging. Here we describe a method to continuously create microfibres with tunable morphological, structural and chemical features using a microfluidic system consisting of a digital, programmable flow control that mimics the silk-spinning process of spiders. With this method we fabricated hydrogel microfibres coded with varying chemical composition and topography along the fibre, including gas micro-bubbles as well as nanoporous spindle-knots and joints that enabled directional water collection. We also explored the potential use of the coded microfibres for tissue engineering applications by creating multifunctional microfibres with a spatially controlled co-culture of encapsulated cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)877-883
Number of pages7
JournalNature Materials
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Nov 1


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Chemistry(all)

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