Visitors see how nanomaterials are able to form tiny structures called nanoscaffolds that help the body repair damaged muscle, bone, and nerve tissues. In the interactive, an injured nerve is unable to communicate messages. After injecting nanoparticles, visitors can watch as the nerve endings grow back together, and sensory messages are once again able to reach the brain.
This scanning electron microscope image shows an electrospun scaffold grown for studying brain tissue engineering and nerve regeneration.
Scaffolds are of great interest in tissue engineering and nerve regeneration because they form a framework on which soft tissue is supported and thereby start its regeneration process. Electrospinning is a versatile process that creates nanofibers by applying a high voltage to electrically charge a liquid. Researchers can tailor a scaffold to meet the requirements of the tissue they seek to regenerate.