21 Feb

PhD Defence Shivesh Anand

Supervisor: Prof. dr. Lorenzo Moroni

Co-supervisor: Dr. Carlos Mota

Keywords: Tissue engineering, Biofabrication, Nanotechnology, Otologic implants

"Breaking The Silence: Nano-engineered Scaffolds for Tympanic Membrane Regeneration"

The tympanic membrane (TM) is an essential element of the human auditory system. Any damage to it directly affects the air conduction pathway of human hearing, resulting in impaired auditory function. This thesis aimed to advance the current tissue engineering strategies available for the restoration of perforated TMs by integrating a variety of nanofeatures into biofabricated constructs. Most clinical interventions addressing the repair of perforated TMs have predominantly relied on conventional therapies, resulting in suboptimal restoration of the patient’s hearing capacity. Therefore, four key aspects were identified by this thesis for an anatomical and functional replication of the native tissue: (1) geometry, (2) biomaterial, (3) drug delivery, and (4) stimulation. Ultimately, independent assessment of these elements at the sub-micron or nano level allowed the development of biomimetic scaffolds for reconstructing the damaged TM with the required 3D architecture, biomaterial properties, immunomodulatory response, antibacterial characteristics, and extracellular environment.

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