Research Interests: BioMEMS, MEMS, Microfluidics, Nanotechnology
Design of an Ex-vivo Prototype of a Bioartificial Kidney for Small Animals [BPN622]
The goal of this project is to design, fabricate, and study an bioartificial rat kidney. The motivation behind the project is to further the development toward an implantable bioartificial human kidney that will improve quality of life and reduce cost for end stage renal disease (ESRD) patients. My proposed device contains two units: i) a hemofilter based upon nanoporous silicon membranes, and ii) a bioreactor composed of kidney proximal tubule (PT) cells. The focus of my study is to develop a device design that is optimized for adequate mass transport so as to mimic natural kidney function. The Roy group has pioneered work in membranes that have been engineered with the use of silicon-based microfabrication techniques to attain pore slits with a height of 8-11 nm. The fabricated nanoporous membranes allow for a device with tight pore size distribution, complete immunoisolation, and durability. These are critical membrane specifications that make them well suited for this application.