Asymmetric biodegradable microdevices for cell-borne drug delivery

ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2015 Mar 25;7(11):6293-9. doi: 10.1021/acsami.5b00613. Epub 2015 Mar 16.


Use of live cells as carriers for drug-laden particulate structures possesses unique advantages for drug delivery. In this work, we report on the development of a novel type of particulate structures called microdevices for cell-borne drug delivery. The microdevices were fabricated by soft lithography with a disklike shape. Each microdevice was composed of a layer of biodegradable thermoplastic such as poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid). One face of the thermoplastic layer was covalently grafted with a cell-adhesive polyelectrolyte such as poly-l-lysine. This asymmetric structure allowed the microdevices to bind to live cells through bulk mixing without causing cell aggregation. Moreover, the cell-microdevice complexes were largely stable, and the viability and proliferation ability of the cells were not affected by the microdevices over a week. In addition, sustained release of a mock drug from the microdevices was demonstrated. This type of microdevice promises to be clinically useful for sustained intravascular drug delivery.

Keywords: PLGA; cell therapies; cell-mediated drug delivery; microcontact printing; microfabrication; microparticles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Absorbable Implants*
  • Cell Transplantation / instrumentation*
  • Delayed-Action Preparations / administration & dosage*
  • Delayed-Action Preparations / chemistry
  • Drug Implants / administration & dosage*
  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Failure Analysis
  • Lactic Acid / chemistry*
  • Materials Testing
  • Miniaturization
  • Polyglycolic Acid / chemistry*
  • Polylactic Acid-Polyglycolic Acid Copolymer
  • Tissue Scaffolds*


  • Delayed-Action Preparations
  • Drug Implants
  • Polylactic Acid-Polyglycolic Acid Copolymer
  • Polyglycolic Acid
  • Lactic Acid