We developed a gel-embossing technique which could be used to fabricate gelatin nanopatterns for cell culture studies. A gel of gelatin solution was dropped on the surface of a glass slide and embossed using a gas permeable stamp made of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS). After drying in a desiccator, nanostructure patterns could be replicated from the stamp into the gelatin layer. After crosslinking in a 10% formaldehyde solution in phosphate buffered saline (PBS), the embossed gelatin layer could be used for cell culture studies. The gel-embossed patterns before and after crosslinking were characterized by atomic force microscopy, revealing significant changes of the pattern morphology introduced by both gel-emboss and crosslink processes. Nonetheless, strong effects of cell elongation and fast cell growth were observed for the proof-of-concept using NIH-3T3 cells cultured on gelatin nanogrooves.
- Cell culture