Submitted by Aikaterini (Katerina) Mantzavinou of the Cima Lab at the Koch Institute
Clusters of lactose crystals can be seen captured inside a silicone lava-like matrix, creating a microporous material useful for drug delivery implants. The image was taken to inspect the cross-section of a supersoft, tissue-like silicone elastomer used to create drug delivery implants for cancer therapy. Lactose powder was used as a sacrificial agent to form micropores in the silicone matrix. These micropores will ultimately form interconnected channels through which drug can be delivered from the implant.