Modelling cell aggregation in liver tissue engineering
Edward Green (Mathematical Biosciences Institute (MBI), The Ohio State University)
(February 8, 2007 10:30 AM - 11:30 AM)
Tissue engineering might be characterised as 'the science of spare parts'. Although currently in its infancy, its long-term aim is to grow functional tissues and organs to replace those which have become defective through age, trauma or disease. A promising method for growing liver tissue in vitro involves the culture of hepatocytes (the cell type making up around 80% of the liver in vivo) as multicellular aggregates. At present, however, the aggregation process is not well understood. In this talk, I shall describe the development of simple mathematical models of the initial stages of aggregation, focusing on the effects of the hepatocytes' interactions with stellate cells (with which they are sometimes co-cultured), and adhesion to the extracellular matrix on which they are seeded.