In vitro production of functional platelets has been demonstrated in microfluidic devices. Scaling-up the production is necessary for therapeutic applications.
Our project aims at engineering a dual-size bioreactor, to process large volumes, while retaining micron-size features requested for the precise hydrodynamic conditions at the cell level, similar to the ones determined by PDMS microfluidics.
Preliminary experiments with 3D porous random structures are encouraging. Our objective is to design a new bioreactor with a selected material allowing a first upscale at bench scale (1 L), before reaching a pilot scale at 10 L. We will use special imaging tools at the cell level as a readout for platelet quality control to facilitate material choice for scale-transition. Optimization will be driven by quantitative and qualitative platelet characteristics.
This program will allow us to obtain enough platelets for further in vivo animal and clinical studies. This new high-tech, low-cost bioreactor will reconcile large volumes of perfusion and very high confinement, and will certainly find other applications in therapeutic or other domains.