BBC Sport picked up on our research into particles with surfaces designed to guide stem cell differentiation; unfortunately they were looking for an image to illustrate how surface texture can guide golf balls!
Dr Marta Alvarez Paino’s image of her microparticles (only 0.04 mm across) won the science photography prize for polymer particles in the EPSRC’s Science Photography Competition. The microparticles inadvertently found their way onto the BBC Sport home page as they resemble golf balls. The microparticle image was putt on the BBC Sport’s composite image of sport equipment, due to being mistaken for an image of the surface of a golf ball! Marta clearly has the development of these tiny ‘golf ball’ shaped mircoparticles down to a tee…
This work is all par for the course for the Regenerative Medicine aspect of the EPSRC Programme Grant in Next Generation Biomaterials Discovery, which is led by Prof Felicity Rose. The work is developing a new concept in studying mammalian cell - material interactions. Cell culture is being explored initially in particulate 2.5D with a view to move towards 3D culture, assessing the influence of surface topography, chemistry and elasticity on mesenchymal stem cell differentiation to bone and induced pluripotent stem cell derived cardioprogenitor cell maturation to functional cardiomyocytes.
Hopefully this case of mistaken identity will help drive this area of research forwards…
Written by Elizabeth Hufton
Laboratory of Biophysics and Surface Analysis, School of Pharmacy, The University of Nottingham
Nottingham, NG7 2RD
telephone: +44 (0) 115 846 6246
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