Smart Design of Materials for Tissue Engineering
The aim of developing tissue engineering approaches are based on the principles of engineering and life sciences. Cells in multicellular tissues sense a set of complex biophysical and biochemical cues and integrate these inputs to greatly change their dynamic state. In this sense, the cell is itself a “smart material”. Thus, the key to the smart design of materials for tissue engineering is to consider the cell as a smart material. This chapter first explains the mechanism of cell material interactions with respect to how cells sense, integrate, transduce, and respond to factors inherent to the extracellular matrix (ECM). Second, the ECM determinants that affect tissue dynamics are listed with respect to space and time in the cell–ECM interaction. A phenomenological sense of space and time is important to design dynamic cues provided by the smart materials. Finally, these insights are organized into a design concept for smart materials in tissue engineering.