Ugur Bozuyuk, Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Germany
Magnetic Surface Microrollers for Endovascular Navigation
Written by Birgul Akolpoglu
Ugur Bozuyuk’s talk on magnetic surface microrollers addressed current challenges in drug delivery and presented microrobotic solutions. Bozuyuk focuses on the role of targeting for efficient drug delivery applications, and highlights the potential of microrobotic drug delivery by external control mechanisms, such as magnetic fields. However, a limitation exists: the difficulty of microrobot locomotion in the bloodstream due to strong fluidic forces and other physiological challenges. To overcome this, Bozuyuk introduced magnetic surface microrollers propelled by rotating magnetic fields, demonstrating fast locomotion. While their potential for navigation in blood vessels was evident in microfluidic chips, he acknowledged the need to explore real-world limitations. Investigating microtopography effects, they found that surface roughness influenced motion, and they revealed further insights through computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations. The confinement effect, explored using cylindrical channels, showcased a fundamental barrier generated by the flow generated inside, causing the microrollers swim against the intended direction. Examining flow effects in different blood vessels, Bozuyuk observed variations in microroller performance. Microroller locomotion in big blood vessels is relatively easy due to the parabolic flow profile, however smaller vessels such as venules and capillaries have more flow velocities, preventing upstream locomotion. The talk concluded with a focus on biocompatibility, as they optimized new materials and conducted imaging-guided navigation experiments, showing potential in physiological environments. Bozuyuk's research contributes to advancing microrobotic capabilities for targeted drug delivery in complex biological systems.