STRUCTURE OF THE COURSE:
The course is organized in lessons which focus on different theoretical aspects at the micro- and nano -scale levels. Within the course an integrated perspective of the design of bioartificial devices will be provided, deriving from the interaction of bioengineering approaches acting at these scale levels. At the micro scale practicals and tutorials will teach how to approach the design of simple microdevices for cell culturing, from their dimensioning to their realization with microtechnologies and testing with current laboratory techniques. At the nano scale practicals will regard the design of systems at the nanoscale such as hierarchical structures of biomolecules for scaffolding and self-assembling molecular structures.
The first part of this integrated course will regard sytems at the microscale:
- The course will first deal with the design principles of small-scale devices enabling the culture of living cells, from cell monolayers to organized proto-tissues.
- On the ground of the design principles, the course will deal with the basic theoretical laws concerning transport phenomena at the microscopic scale. In particular, micro fluid-dynamics, particle transport, solute transport, etc. will be treated.
- In parallel to the theoretical aspects, the microfabrication technologies used for manufacturing and the techniques for manipulating fluids and particles at the microscopic scale will be reviewed, and their implications for microdevice design will be integrated in the general vision.
Regarding the second part of the course that will regard sytems at the nanoscale:
- the course will start discussing the technological impact of nanoscale systems and considering the top down and bottom up approaches for the architecture of nanoscale systems.
-Classical and quantum mechanics will be intruduced and discussed depending on the specific system to be described.
- In particular key techniques used extensively in the characterization of structures at the nanoscale will be described (Atomic Force Microscopy)
In this second part the course will cover quantum aspects in the biological fields such as:
quantum dots and wires;
DNA-based artificial structures (DNA origami);
nanoscale devices for drug discovery or delivery, and carbon nanostructures (nanotubes and graphene layers);