Albert Folch received his BSc (1989) & PhD (1994) in Physics from Univ. of Barcelona. From 1994–1996, he was a postdoc at MIT/MTL (Prof. M. Schmidt) developing MEMS. In 1997, he joined the Toner lab at Harvard to develop soft lithographic approaches to tissue engineering. The Folch lab at UW BioE works at the interface between microfluidics, 3D-printing and cancer.
The microfluidics field is at a critical crossroads: the technology has had a huge impact, yet the fabrication of complex microfluidic devices remains technically challenging and expensive, and the community does not agree on the “ideal material”. I will review our recent efforts based on the 3D-Printing of biocompatible PEG-DA resins and laser cutting of plastic laminates. These techniques are suitable strategies for launching a startup based on complex (3D) devices such as organ/tissue-on-a-chip.