First secondments of BioTUNE, finished

Dr. Diego Pallarola and Dr. Nicolás Saffioti (Instituto de Nanosistemas, UNSAM, Argentina) have just finished their secondments with Dr. Ada Cavalcanti-Adam (Max Planck Institute, Germany).

On February 1st, Dr. Nicolás Saffioti (Instituto de Nanosistemas, UNSAM, Argentina) traveled to Germany to join Dr.  Ada Cavalcanti-Adam's research team, Growth Factor Mechanobiology (Max Planck Institute). One month later, on March 1st, Dr. Diego Pallarola joined them to carry on the first two secondments of the BioTUNE project.

During their time with Dr. Cavalcanti, the secondees attended an initial training in cell culture techniques and procedures. After this training, the visitors started a culture of mouse myoblasts (C2C12 cells) which are known to transdifferentiate into osteoblasts upon specific growth factor addition (e.g. BMP-2). 

Dr. Saffioti and Dr. Pallarola also learned the basics of fluorescence microscopy and performed fluorescence immunostaining of biological samples. Therefore, they could acquire important concepts regarding the evaluation of C2C12 differentiation by analysis of the images.

In a second set of investigations, secondees learned how to prepare arrays of gold nanoparticles on glass and ITO (indium tin oxide)-coated glass surfaces. After substrate fabrication, they were instructed in the functionalization of nanopatterned surfaces. Fabricated nanopatterns supported C2C12 cell adhesion, indicating that experiments to tune C2C12 differentiation on these surfaces can be performed in future steps. Furthermore, visitors also fabricated ITO microelectrodes by UV photolithography using the cleanroom facilities. 

Finally, secondees were also trained in the design and fabrication of PDMS microfluidic chips.