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SQI: Simpson Querry Institute

Piuma Nanoindenter

Description and Applications

The compact, benchtop Piuma Nanoindenter from Optics 11 measures micromechanical properties (elastic or Young modulus, storage and loss modulus, creep and relaxation constant) of soft biomaterials in wet or dry environments. The Piuma allows researchers to map micromechanical properties of biomaterials and tissues, study the cell microenvironment, and identify variations within biomatrices as the result of cell population modifications. Therefore, the instrument can be used to observe and quantify parameters such as cell proliferation, adhesion, and differentiation as influenced by biomechanical cues from the surrounding microenvironment.

The user-friendly Piuma is specifically designed to study biomaterials with stiffnesses anywhere between 5Pa-1GPa. It excels in the Pa-kPa range, covering very soft hydrogels, scaffolds, spheroids, fibers, active polymers and elastomers, micro- and nanoparticles, 3D-printed biomaterials, bioengineered tissues, cartilage, and other biological tissues up to samples as stiff as trabecular bone.

At ANTEC, Piuma users have access to a fully equipped cell culture facility. Cell culture users are required to bring their own supplies and small equipment (pipettes).


Acknowledging ANTEC

Please acknowledge the use of ANTEC equipment when data obtained in our core is published, used for proposal or grant submissions, or included in your presentations. Acknowledgement helps demonstrate ANTEC’s value to the Northwestern University Research community and contributes to our efforts to secure funding for new instruments and services. See sample text.