Our group implements various approaches involving synthetic polymers in new or improved biomedical applications in particular involving cell-material interactions. By looking at nature’s design with respect topography/structure dimensions, mechanical properties/stiffness, and (bio)chemistry insights are obtained on how to design new implant materials, coatings and diagnostics/delivery systems.
Materials involved are mostly of polymeric origin and entails macroscopic, mesoscopic, and nanoscopic structures. One of the primary aims is to develop a screening platform which allows us to optimize the current polymer-based medical technology where we tackle the demand of companies which are bound by the limitation of FDA-approved polymers and production lines but still want to improve their performance. Additional research lines involve polymeric microgels for cell scaffolds, delivery and diagnostics and artificial virus structures composed of protein-polymer hybrids.
The group is embedded within the University Medical Center Groningen but operates in close collaboration with the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials and thereby bridging fundamental materials science with medical technology and applications.