One of the IIT main technological goals is to move ahead from traditional humanoids with mechanical hands and legs (hard-bodied systems) toward next generation hybrid systems realized with soft materials, artificial muscles, tendons, growing tissues, bio-sensors (soft-bodied systems). This ambitious goal requires a deep investigation of soft, functional, anisotropic materials mimicking our skin, tendons and bones but also development of self-repairing, evolvable materials. By endowing such materials with appropriate biocompatible and functional properties, highly efficient interfaces between biological systems and artificial devices may be created, allowing the development of innovative prosthetic devices.
To this end a Tissue Engineering Laboratory is established in Morego bringing together researchers from the IIT Central Labs and IIT Network with the common aim of interfacing biological systems to artificial devices.
- Formulating nanobiomaterial scaffolds
- Understanding and controlling cellular response: 3D organization
- Bio-reactor based tissue engineering and testing
- Robotic Prostheses development
- Coupling of structural elements of artificial limbs with bone tissue