Module 3 (2014-2018): Interactions of responsive materials with cells

Although smart (nano)materials with specific functionalities promise significant breakthroughs in diagnosis and therapy, the progress of, in particular, the latter is comparably slow, which is attributed to many factors, such as the lack of robustness of the materials and the limited understanding of the fundamental biological interactions. The main goal of Module 3 is thus to improve knowledge of the interaction of controlled stimuli-responsive materials with biological systems. The acquired know-how and achievements have resulted at the end of the first funding phase in developing robust smart systems capable of amplifying weak biochemical signals, modifying the stiffness of cell substrates in situ, and targeting and killing specific cells, e.g., cancer cells.