Dr. Stefan Giselbrecht

Dr. Stefan Giselbrecht graduated from the University of Saarbrücken, Germany, with a Diploma in Biology. He did his doctorate at the Institute of Microstructure Technology (Technical University of Karlsruhe, now Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, KIT, Germany) and the Institute of Medical Engineering and Biophysics (Research Center Karlsruhe, now KIT) under the supervision of Professor Volker Saile and received his Ph.D. degree from the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

From 2007 to 2014 he headed the research group 'Biomimetic Microdevices' at the Institute for Biological Interfaces-1 at KIT. Since 2014, he works at MERLN Institute for Technology-Inspired Regenerative Medicine and is appointed Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences of University Maastricht. He is also one of the founders of 300MICRONS, a spin-off from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology which develops and markets flexible solutions for 3D cell culture.

Dr. Stefan Giselbrecht is particularly interested in developing new and innovative micro-and nanotechnologies to create complex artificial microenvironments for three-dimensionally (3D) cultured cells. He is co-inventor of the SMART-technology (Substrate Modification And Replication by Thermoforming) and has a long-term expertise in producing film-based biomedical microdevices, based on various functionalization methods and microscale thermoforming.

Research 

The ability to design, fabricate and (bio-)functionalize devices, which offer a possibility to maintain, manipulate or control cells, is crucial for understanding mechanisms underlying a particular cellular function. Exploring the design principles found in nature, we apply these insights to engineer new complex microfluidic in vitro platforms, based on cell-responsive biomaterials and latest surface functionalization techniques, to mimic spatiotemporal aspects of the intricate relationship between cells and their microenvironment. The ultimate goal of mimicking particular components of the native environment of (stem) cells, developing tissues or even multicellular organisms in a defined spatiotemporal context, is the ability to regulate cell fate, differentiation outcomes, pattern formation, and morphogenetic movements in vitro.