Production of cultured meat with the use of bovine pluripotent stem cells and a smart matrix in a 3D environment
Cellular agriculture is a promising avenue for sustainably contributing to the growing food demand. In this respect, cultured or in vitro meat receives increasing attention. Yet, there is currently no scientific evidence that animal myofibers equivalent to meat as a nutrient-dense, highly structured food, can be made in vitro. This proposal will address several existing hurdles. First, we will compare and enhance the proliferation and differentiation capacity of these three cell types, resulting in an informed choice of cell type for myofiber generation. Secondly, we will design a ‘smart matrix’, including food-grade components that contribute to texture, flavour and a good nutritional profile. Physicochemical stability of, and cellular adhesion and survival on these new matrices will be investigated. The best performing smart matrices will be tested on their potential to support muscle cell differentiation. These insights will be subsequently used to increase muscle fiber size and to study in vitro muscle development in a 3D architecture. In addition, strategies for stimulating the build-up of contractile proteins will be investigated.