Functionally Graded Biomaterials for Use as Model Systems and Replacement Tissues

Jeremy M. Lowen, J. Kent Leach

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The heterogeneity of native tissues requires complex materials to provide suitable substitutes for model systems and replacement tissues. Functionally graded materials have the potential to address this challenge by mimicking the gradients in heterogeneous tissues such as porosity, mineralization, and fiber alignment to influence strength, ductility, and cell signaling. Advancements in microfluidics, electrospinning, and 3D printing enable the creation of increasingly complex gradient materials that further the understanding of physiological gradients. The combination of these methods enables rapid prototyping of constructs with high spatial resolution. However, successful translation of these gradients requires both spatial and temporal presentation of cues to model the complexity of native tissues that few materials have demonstrated. This Review highlights recent strategies to engineer functionally graded materials for the modeling and repair of heterogeneous tissues, together with a description of how cells interact with various gradients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020


  • composites
  • gradient materials
  • light-based gradients
  • mesenchymal stromal cells
  • tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics


Dive into the research topics of 'Functionally Graded Biomaterials for Use as Model Systems and Replacement Tissues'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this