Apparatus for Active Tissue Scaffold Stretching in Cell Culture Conditions

Case ID:

This invention is a means to apply controlled dynamic forces on a macroscale tissue scaffold along a period of cell culture conditions that can range from minutes to weeks. This apparatus uses a mechanically compliant substrate, which can be made from various materials, that supports the attached tissue scaffold. The apparatus also contains a holder to attach the tissue scaffold and an actuator with controlled motion that stretches and compresses the tissues. 

The use of porous 3D scaffolds provide a suitable environment for the generation of tissues and organs, which allows for advancements in biomedical research. Applications of tissue stretching scaffold technology includes controlling cell orientation, growth, gene expression, lineage commitment, and differentiation and for achieving successful tissue engineering of mechanically functional tissues, including cardiac, muscle, vasculature, ligament, tendon, bone, etc. There are various biomaterials that have been used to create scaffolds for this purpose. However, it is essential that cell culture tools can stimulate dynamic mechanical stimuli to cells or tissue constructs on compliant scaffolds because of the complex interactions between biomechanical and physical aspects of the molecular functions in the tissues and organs.


  • Stretch and compress tissues
  • Assists in generation of tissues and organs
  • Controls cell orientation, growth, gene expression, lineage commitment, and differentiation


  • Compatible with most sterilization techniques
  • Compatible with various substrate materials
Patent Information:
Contact For More Information:
Garrett Edmunds
Licensing Manager, UAHS-TLA
The University of Arizona
Lead Inventor(s):
Ashlee Harris
Jerome Lacombe
Baiju Thomas
Matthew Barrett
Frederic Zenhausern
Alan Nordquist