Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Biomedical Engineering

First Advisor

David Simpson


Electrospinning is a technique used to generate scaffolds composed of nano- to micron-sized fibers for use in tissue engineering. This technology possesses several key weaknesses that prevent it from adoption into the clinical treatment regime. One major weakness is the lack of porosity exhibited in most electrospun scaffolds, preventing cellular infiltration and thus hosts tissue integration. Another weakness seen in the field is the inability to physically cut electrospun scaffolds in the frontal plane for subsequent microscopic analysis (current electrospun scaffold analysis is limited to sectioning in the cross-sectional plane). Given this it becomes extremely difficult to associate spatial scaffold dynamics with a specific cellular response. In an effort to address these issues the research presented here will discuss modifications to electrospinning technology, cryosectioning technology, and our understanding of cellular infiltration mechanisms into electrospun scaffolds. Of note, the hypothesis of a potentially significant passive phase of cellular infiltration will be discussed as well as modifications to cell culture protocols aimed at establishing multiple passive infiltration phases during prolonged culture to encourage deep cellular infiltration.


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