A light modulated hydrogel system
Cells in the human body are constantly subjected to internal forces and cyclic strains, rather than to constant forces. In order to mimic the dynamics of tissue-dependent natural forces, we have developed hybrid light-responsive hydrogels, which quickly respond to infrared radiation. These dynamic surface deformations of the hydrogel lead to (sub)-cellular mechanical forces on cells grown on top of the gel. Our innovative platform will provide answers to key mechanobiological questions.