The INM - Leibniz Institute for New Materials in Saarbrücken, Germany, is an internationally leading center for materials research. INM develops polymeric biomaterials and cellular microenvironments that mimic the structure and properties of natural tissues. Our biomaterials are used to guide specific cell processes in vitro and in vivo. They capture the multifaceted interactions between cells and natural scaffolds in relevant medical scenarios like cellular migration, angiogenesis or immunoregulation.
The regulation of biomaterial properties using light is at the core of our research. We exploit photoinitiated (bio)chemical reactions to confer biologically relevant compositional and structural changes to our biomaterials in space and time. Our 4D biomaterials, upstream of adaptive materials, are used for fundamental studies of cell-materials interactions.
Chemists, bioengineers and cell biologists cooperate with engineers at the INM-Innovation Center and medical partners to translate next-generation biomaterials into innovative medical products for regeneration and diagnostics. Relevant fields for translational approaches are predictive tissue models for personalized therapeutics and instructive scaffolds for regenerative medicine. Our understanding of cell-materials interactions is also transferred to safe-by-design principles in materials development.