Sustained drug delivery across a 3D hydrogel

Center channel (blue): an Elastin-Like Peptide hydrogel encapsulating neural spheres, each about 150 µm in diameter.  This channel is connected to the side channels via hundreds of tiny capillaries. 

Source channel (pink): contains an active flow of cell nutrients and neurotrophic drugs.

Sink channel (black): contains an active flow of cell nutrients. 

How it works: 

When active, this device delivers nutrients to the hydrogel via shear-free diffusion.  Because the source channel also delivers neurotrophic drugs, the dosage delivered to the hydrogel decreases across the width of the center channel. Neural spheres located closer to the source channel will experience higher dosages, while those close to the sink channel will receive a lower dosage.