The goal of this project is to develop a new organ-on-chip microfluidic device based on the actuation of thin hydrogel layers. Indeed, hydrogels possess interesting properties, compared to the commonly used perforated PDMS membranes. Notably, biocompatible hydrogels should allow for a new cell compartment, hosting stromal cells for instance, and requiring immune cells to rely on more complex migration mechanisms than crawling through a perforated membrane. These features should get us closer to relevant mimics of tissue physiology.
Today the device is patented, and a first application on gut infection is under investigation.