Optical Pacing of Human-Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Cardiomyocytes Mediated by a Conjugated Polymer Interface

Adv Healthc Mater. 2019 Jul;8(13):e1900198. doi: 10.1002/adhm.201900198. Epub 2019 May 8.


The use of light for triggering skeletal and cardiac muscles allows lower invasiveness higher selectivity and unprecedented possibility to target individual cells or even subcellular compartments in a temporally and spatially precise manner. Because cells are in general transparent, this requires the development of suitable interfaces that bestow light sensitivity to living matter. In the present work, successfully demonstrated is the use of conjugated polymer films as transducer to optically enhance the contraction rate of a human and patient-specific cardiac in vitro cell model. By different experimental approaches, the coupling mechanism to the photothermal effect is assigned. This work extends the range of application of the polymer-mediated cell photostimulation phenomenon to cardiac muscle cells, opening up possible applications in cardiac therapy and for implementation of in vitro studies.

Keywords: cardiac therapy; geneless optostimulation; organic semiconductors; photostimulation; photothermal effects.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biocompatible Materials / chemistry
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cellular Reprogramming
  • Glass / chemistry
  • Humans
  • Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells / cytology*
  • Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells / metabolism
  • Light
  • Muscle Contraction / drug effects
  • Muscle Contraction / radiation effects
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / cytology
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / metabolism*
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / radiation effects
  • Polymers / chemistry*
  • Polymers / pharmacology
  • Temperature


  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Polymers