Dr. Solange Massa is a medical doctor and scientist developing biomaterials for tissue engineering. MIT Innovator under 35 and Women at the Frontier she explores the latest technologies in 3D printing and material science to create medical devices. In her latest award-winning work she developed vascular, liver and cardicac Organ-on-a-Chip platforms for drug toxicity testing. Her postgraduate work includes studies at Harvard-MIT Health Sciences & Technology, Universidad de los Andes and Universidad de Chile in cell biology, neuroscience and nanotechnology. Her work has been featured in MIT Technology Review, BBC, Wired and numerous scientific journals.

Honors & Awards

  • 40 Under 40, AFCEA (2018)
  • Women at the Frontier, Women at the Frontier (2017)
  • MIT Innovators under 35, MIT Technology Review (2016)
  • PMI Research Scholarship, Universidad de los Andes (2014-2015)
  • Academic and Financial Scholarship, Universidad de los Andes (2012-2014)

Professional Education

  • Ph.D. In Biomedicine, Universidad de los Andes, Biomedicine (2018)
  • M.D., Universidad Austral, Medicine (2012)
  • Bachelor of Arts and Science, Unlisted School (2002)

Research & Scholarship

Current Research and Scholarly Interests

Developing biomaterials and medical devices using chemistry and 3D printing.

Lab Affiliations


All Publications

  • Label-Free and Regenerative Electrochemical Microfluidic Biosensors for Continual Monitoring of Cell Secretomes. Advanced science Shin, S. R., Kilic, T., Zhang, Y. S., Avci, H., Hu, N., Kim, D., Branco, C., Aleman, J., Massa, S., Silvestri, A., Kang, J., Desalvo, A., Hussaini, M. A., Chae, S., Polini, A., Bhise, N., Hussain, M. A., Lee, H., Dokmeci, M. R., Khademhosseini, A. 2017; 4 (5): 1600522-?


    Development of an efficient sensing platform capable of continual monitoring of biomarkers is needed to assess the functionality of the in vitro organoids and to evaluate their biological responses toward pharmaceutical compounds or chemical species over extended periods of time. Here, a novel label-free microfluidic electrochemical (EC) biosensor with a unique built-in on-chip regeneration capability for continual measurement of cell-secreted soluble biomarkers from an organoid culture in a fully automated manner without attenuating the sensor sensitivity is reported. The microfluidic EC biosensors are integrated with a human liver-on-a-chip platform for continual monitoring of the metabolic activity of the organoids by measuring the levels of secreted biomarkers for up to 7 d, where the metabolic activity of the organoids is altered by a systemically applied drug. The variations in the biomarker levels are successfully measured by the microfluidic regenerative EC biosensors and agree well with cellular viability and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay analyses, validating the accuracy of the unique sensing platform. It is believed that this versatile and robust microfluidic EC biosensor that is capable of automated and continual detection of soluble biomarkers will find widespread use for long-term monitoring of human organoids during drug toxicity studies or efficacy assessments of in vitro platforms.

    View details for DOI 10.1002/advs.201600522

    View details for PubMedID 28546915

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5441508

  • Multisensor-integrated organs-on-chips platform for automated and continual in situ monitoring of organoid behaviors PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Zhang, Y. S., Aleman, J., Shin, S. R., Kilic, T., Kim, D., Shaegh, S. A., Massa, S., Riahi, R., Chae, S., Hu, N., Avci, H., Zhang, W., Silvestri, A., Nezhad, A. S., Manbohi, A., De Ferrari, F., Polini, A., Calzone, G., Shaikh, N., Alerasool, P., Budina, E., Kang, J., Bhise, N., Ribas, J., Pourmand, A., Skardal, A., Shupe, T., Bishop, C. E., Dokmeci, M. R., Atala, A., Khademhosseini, A. 2017; 114 (12): E2293-E2302


    Organ-on-a-chip systems are miniaturized microfluidic 3D human tissue and organ models designed to recapitulate the important biological and physiological parameters of their in vivo counterparts. They have recently emerged as a viable platform for personalized medicine and drug screening. These in vitro models, featuring biomimetic compositions, architectures, and functions, are expected to replace the conventional planar, static cell cultures and bridge the gap between the currently used preclinical animal models and the human body. Multiple organoid models may be further connected together through the microfluidics in a similar manner in which they are arranged in vivo, providing the capability to analyze multiorgan interactions. Although a wide variety of human organ-on-a-chip models have been created, there are limited efforts on the integration of multisensor systems. However, in situ continual measuring is critical in precise assessment of the microenvironment parameters and the dynamic responses of the organs to pharmaceutical compounds over extended periods of time. In addition, automated and noninvasive capability is strongly desired for long-term monitoring. Here, we report a fully integrated modular physical, biochemical, and optical sensing platform through a fluidics-routing breadboard, which operates organ-on-a-chip units in a continual, dynamic, and automated manner. We believe that this platform technology has paved a potential avenue to promote the performance of current organ-on-a-chip models in drug screening by integrating a multitude of real-time sensors to achieve automated in situ monitoring of biophysical and biochemical parameters.

    View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.1612906114

    View details for Web of Science ID 000396893600007

    View details for PubMedID 28265064

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5373350

  • Bioprinted 3D vascularized tissue model for drug toxicity analysis. Bioprinted 3D vascularized tissue model for drug toxicity analysis. Massa, S. 2017; 11 (4)

    View details for DOI 10.1063/1.4994708

  • Automated microfluidic platform of bead-based electrochemical immunosensor integrated with bioreactor for continual monitoring of cell secreted biomarkers SCIENTIFIC REPORTS Riahi, R., Shaegh, S. A., Ghaderi, M., Zhang, Y. S., Shin, S. R., Aleman, J., Massa, S., Kim, D., Dokmeci, M. R., Khademhosseini, A. 2016; 6


    There is an increasing interest in developing microfluidic bioreactors and organs-on-a-chip platforms combined with sensing capabilities for continual monitoring of cell-secreted biomarkers. Conventional approaches such as ELISA and mass spectroscopy cannot satisfy the needs of continual monitoring as they are labor-intensive and not easily integrable with low-volume bioreactors. This paper reports on the development of an automated microfluidic bead-based electrochemical immunosensor for in-line measurement of cell-secreted biomarkers. For the operation of the multi-use immunosensor, disposable magnetic microbeads were used to immobilize biomarker-recognition molecules. Microvalves were further integrated in the microfluidic immunosensor chip to achieve programmable operations of the immunoassay including bead loading and unloading, binding, washing, and electrochemical sensing. The platform allowed convenient integration of the immunosensor with liver-on-chips to carry out continual quantification of biomarkers secreted from hepatocytes. Transferrin and albumin productions were monitored during a 5-day hepatotoxicity assessment in which human primary hepatocytes cultured in the bioreactor were treated with acetaminophen. Taken together, our unique microfluidic immunosensor provides a new platform for in-line detection of biomarkers in low volumes and long-term in vitro assessments of cellular functions in microfluidic bioreactors and organs-on-chips.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/srep24598

    View details for Web of Science ID 000374485300001

    View details for PubMedID 27098564

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4838915

  • A liver-on-a-chip platform with bioprinted hepatic spheroids BIOFABRICATION Bhise, N. S., Manoharan, V., Massa, S., Tamayol, A., Ghaderi, M., Miscuglio, M., Lang, Q., Zhang, Y. S., Shin, S. R., Calzone, G., Annabi, N., Shupe, T. D., Bishop, C. E., Atala, A., Dokmeci, M. R., Khademhosseini, A. 2016; 8 (1)


    The inadequacy of animal models in correctly predicting drug and biothreat agent toxicity in humans has resulted in a pressing need for in vitro models that can recreate the in vivo scenario. One of the most important organs in the assessment of drug toxicity is liver. Here, we report the development of a liver-on-a-chip platform for long-term culture of three-dimensional (3D) human HepG2/C3A spheroids for drug toxicity assessment. The bioreactor design allowed for in situ monitoring of the culture environment by enabling direct access to the hepatic construct during the experiment without compromising the platform operation. The engineered bioreactor could be interfaced with a bioprinter to fabricate 3D hepatic constructs of spheroids encapsulated within photocrosslinkable gelatin methacryloyl (GelMA) hydrogel. The engineered hepatic construct remained functional during the 30 days culture period as assessed by monitoring the secretion rates of albumin, alpha-1 antitrypsin, transferrin, and ceruloplasmin, as well as immunostaining for the hepatocyte markers, cytokeratin 18, MRP2 bile canalicular protein and tight junction protein ZO-1. Treatment with 15 mM acetaminophen induced a toxic response in the hepatic construct that was similar to published studies on animal and other in vitro models, thus providing a proof-of-concept demonstration of the utility of this liver-on-a-chip platform for toxicity assessment.

    View details for DOI 10.1088/1758-5090/8/1/014101

    View details for Web of Science ID 000373289000002

    View details for PubMedID 26756674

  • Google Glass-Directed Monitoring and Control of Microfluidic Biosensors and Actuators SCIENTIFIC REPORTS Zhang, Y. S., Busignani, F., Ribas, J., Aleman, J., Rodrigues, T. N., Shaegh, S. A., Massa, S., Rossi, C. B., Taurino, I., Shin, S., Calzone, G., Amaratunga, G. M., Chambers, D. L., Jabari, S., Niu, Y., Manoharan, V., Dokmeci, M. R., Carrara, S., Demarchi, D., Khademhosseini, A. 2016; 6

    View details for DOI 10.1038/srep22237

    View details for Web of Science ID 000371050200001

  • Microfl uidic Bioprinting of Heterogeneous 3D Tissue Constructs Using Low-Viscosity Bioink ADVANCED MATERIALS Colosi, C., Shin, S. R., Manoharan, V., Massa, S., Costantini, M., Barbetta, A., Dokmeci, M. R., Dentini, M., Khademhosseini, A. 2016; 28 (4): 677-684


    A novel bioink and a dispensing technique for 3D tissue-engineering applications are presented. The technique incorporates a coaxial extrusion needle using a low-viscosity cell-laden bioink to produce highly defined 3D biostructures. The extrusion system is then coupled to a microfluidic device to control the bioink arrangement deposition, demonstrating the versatility of the bioprinting technique. This low-viscosity cell-responsive bioink promotes cell migration and alignment within each fiber organizing the encapsulated cells.

    View details for DOI 10.1002/adma.201503310

    View details for Web of Science ID 000368847800012

    View details for PubMedID 26606883

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4804470

  • Platinum nanopetal-based potassium sensors for acute cell death monitoring RSC ADVANCES Taurino, I., Massa, S., Sanzo, G., Aleman, J., Flavia, B., Shin, S. R., Zhang, Y. S., Dokmeci, M. R., De Micheli, G., Carrara, S., Khademhosseini, A. 2016; 6 (46): 40517-40526

    View details for DOI 10.1039/c6ra01664b

    View details for Web of Science ID 000374974300115

  • Organ-on-a-chip platforms for studying drug delivery systems JOURNAL OF CONTROLLED RELEASE Bhise, N. S., Ribas, J., Manoharan, V., Zhang, Y. S., Polini, A., Massa, S., Dokmeci, M. R., Khademhosseini, A. 2014; 190: 82-93


    Novel microfluidic tools allow new ways to manufacture and test drug delivery systems. Organ-on-a-chip systems - microscale recapitulations of complex organ functions - promise to improve the drug development pipeline. This review highlights the importance of integrating microfluidic networks with 3D tissue engineered models to create organ-on-a-chip platforms, able to meet the demand of creating robust preclinical screening models. Specific examples are cited to demonstrate the use of these systems for studying the performance of drug delivery vectors and thereby reduce the discrepancies between their performance at preclinical and clinical trials. We also highlight the future directions that need to be pursued by the research community for these proof-of-concept studies to achieve the goal of accelerating clinical translation of drug delivery nanoparticles.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jconrel.2014.05.004

    View details for Web of Science ID 000344470600007

    View details for PubMedID 24818770

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC4142092

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