Fields of Impact
The DWI – Leibniz Institute for Interactive Materials develops materials with dynamic properties and active functions, following the example of living materials in nature. In order to realize this mission, research at DWI is organized in such a way as to promote the convergence of different scientific disciplines. Scientists from currently five Competences Areas join forces within interdisciplinary research projects that are associated to DWI’s three Fields of Impact, each of them addressing central societal needs: Biomedical Materials, Sustainable Materials, and Information Materials.
Research in the field of targeted drug delivery and biomedical materials in general has gained tremendous importance in the last two to three years. Biomedical materials, spanning various length scales from the nanometer scale to macroscopic objects, are being designed and fabricated to drive biological processes in living systems such as bacteria, blood, mammalian cells, and tissues. DWI combines chemistry, engineering, and biotechnology to develop biomedical materials that are inspired by nature and encode multiple feedback cycles with their environment. In addition, material properties can be varied in time and as needed by external stimuli to match the needs of the biological system or therapeutic effect. DWI focuses on the growth of ex vivo tissue models to study pathologies, in vivo regenerative medicine, biofunctional coatings of medical devices, spatiotemporally controlled activation of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), and theranostics triggered by external stimuli.