AAT Bioquest

How are 3D cultures made?

Posted January 7, 2022


3D cultures are artificially created environments that enable biological cells to grow or interact with their surrounding extracellular framework in three dimensions. There are a number of ways 3D cell cultures can be made. Generally, they can be classified in 2 types of 3D culturing methods: scaffold technique and the scaffold-free technique. The scaffold techniques include the use of solid scaffolds, hydrogels and other materials which allow growth in all directions. Scaffold-free techniques include the use of low adhesion plates, hanging drop plates, micropatterned surfaces, and rotating bioreactors, magnetic levitation, and magnetic 3D bioprinting. This method relies on cells to self-assemble into clusters or spheroids.

Additional resources

3D cell culture: a review of current approaches and techniques