Degree Objective: Ph.D. Chemical Engineering
Prior Degrees: B.Sc. Materials Science & Engineering
Undergraduate Institution: Donghua University
Polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) has been used for short- and long-term catheters. However, PDMS shunt tubing has been scrutinized recently because of their extremely high failure rates (such as their use to treat hydrocephalus). While there are many reasons why PDMS shunt systems fail, one is tissue occlusion of the ventricular catheter, most often caused by macrophages. Infection is also problematic. Nevertheless, few attempts have been made to detect and to manipulate shunt catheter inflammation and infection. It is hypothesized that nanotextured and nanotubular surfaces can be carefully manipulated to inhibit immune cell (specifically, macrophages) and bacteria responses. In my project, I’m trying to create PDMS molds of titanium (Ti) anodized to process nanotubes and test inflammatory and bacteria responses on such substrates.