Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Engineering

Degree Level



Biomedical Engineering


David Zaharoff

Committee Member/Reader

Michelle Kim

Committee Member/Second Reader

Narasimhan Rajaram


Cytokine-based cancer immunotherapies stimulate a host’s immune system to fight cancer. In particular, interleukin-12 (IL-12), a potent pro-inflammatory cytokine, has demonstrated the ability to eliminate tumors in a number of preclinical models. Toxicities associated with the systemic delivery of IL-12 have precluded its use in the clinic. We are developing a novel chitosan-based hydrogel to maintain high local concentrations of cytokines, such as IL-12, in the tumor while minimizing its systemic dissemination. This hydrogel was found to form spontaneously within ten seconds of mixing two proprietary components. To increase the usefulness of the hydrogel, an efficient mixing and delivery system is needed. We designed and evaluated a device capable of mixing two solutions from two syringes during injection. A total of eight prototypes were created using three-dimensional printers; six were printed on an Object30; one was printed on a MakerBot; another was printed on an uPrint SE Plus. Three tests were used to determine the effectiveness of the device. The first test was a dimensional test to check for fitting of the syringes and needle. After passing this test, the fluid dynamics were tested using distilled water. If the device pasted the previous tests, the third test determined the mixing ability of the device using the novel hydrogel. After success in all three tests, the sterility of the device became the main goal. Hydrogel formation was achieved but a better material for the device is still under investigation.