Štěpán Popelka, PhD
TopicPolymer scaffolds for cultivation and transplantation of retinal cells
AnnotationAge-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a frequent cause of vision loss in the individuals over the age of 60. This degenerative retinal disease is manifested by a progressive loss of central vision which makes reading and other activities impossible. Currently, there is no causal or specific cure that would stop the degeneration process or improve the quality of vision. One of the most promising treatments is based on replacement of degenerated outer parts of retina, reticular pigmented epithelium and adjacent photoreceptors, by transplantation of a graft of retinal cells pre-cultivated on a suitable polymer scaffold. Limited access into the subretinal space requires the size and mechanical properties to be well optimized in addition to the bioactivity and degradability of the scaffold. The aim of the project is the preparation of composite membranes from degradable aliphatic polyesters combined with hydrophilic biomimetic coatings, and the study of the physico-chemical, mechanical and morphological properties. Synthesis of the polymer and bioactive components of the scaffold will be an essential part of the project. The ability of the scaffolds to support attachment and growth of the retinal cells together with the suitability for transplantation into the subretinal space will be investigated at the cooperating biological and medical institutions. The topic is suitable for graduates in chemistry, above all macromolecular chemistry and biochemistry.

Otto Wichterle Centre of Polymer Materials and Technologies - CPMTOW

Centre of Biomedicinal Polymers - CBMP

Centre of Polymer Sensors - CPS

Polymers for Power Engineering - Energolab


Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry AS CR
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162 06 Prague 6
Czech Republic
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