Living Responsive Materials and Devices

Poster Session: 



Xinyue Liu


Xinyue Liu, Hyunwoo Yuk, Shaoting Lin, German Parada, Zijay Tang, Timothy Lu, Xuanhe Zhao

Author Affiliation: 

Department of Chemical Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA, USA, 02141.


In nature, highly organized, three dimensional, multicellular living systems like biofilms, gut microbiota, and tumor tissues, can perform complex cellular functions over time, such as cell cooperation, competition, and proliferation, in response to different spatiotemporal signals. Here comes the first question, can we mimic highly organized, time-evolving biological constructs? On the other hand, single cells can be genetically programmed with synthetic circuits that execute sensing, computing, memory, and response functions. However, most of the gene editing and expression are completed in Petri dishes and centrifuge tubes. Can we incorporate the genetic engineered cells into large-scale, high-resolution devices, just like this integrated circuit? Or, is that possible to harness programed cells as active components to fabricate a living machine? 3D-printed architectures of programmed cells give us the answer: it will not only mimic highly organized, time-evolving biological constructs, but also provide new functions as living responsive materials and devices.