Tunable neuronal scaffold biomaterials through plasmonic photo-patterning of aerogels


The authors have shown recently that the neurite extension by neuronal PC12 cells is greatly impacted by aerogel topography. Indeed, the average neurite length of PC-12 cells grown on aerogels is greater than that in cells cultured on control substrates. Here, the authors report on the first experimental study focused on the design and development of a plasmonic photo-patterning technique for collagen-coated mesoporous aerogel biomaterials. Herein, the authors have produced specific patterns on silica aerogels by performing precise plasmonic photo-patterning on liquid crystal-coated aerogels. The authors report the methodology employed to create a collagen-liquid crystal gel mixture imprinted with precise plasmonic photo-patterns. PC12 cells plated on these patterns did attach and survive and followed the spatial cues of the pattern to align themselves in a similar pattern.

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MRS Communications