High-Resolution Surface Replication of Living Organisms using Air-Through-Precursor Suction-Augmented Replica Molding

Seok Joon Mun, Wookyoung Jang, Ji Yeon Eom, Hyeon Ung Kim, Ki Wan Bong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Replica molding is widely used to reproduce the surface microstructures that provide living organisms with distinct and useful functions. However, the existing methods are limited by the low resolution resulting from the air trapped in the structures during precursor solution loading. This study investigated replica molding with an air-through-precursor suction (APS) process, which used a degassed polydimethylsiloxane substrate to remove the trapped air through the precursor solution. The liquid loading times are characterized using a model template, and air suction that is up to 36 times faster can be achieved using the APS process relative to a conventional method. Using APS replica molding, biocompatible replicates from human fingerprints and gecko skin are fabricated using only a 3 min precursor solution loading step. Owing to the enhanced and reproducible resolution from APS replica molding, for the first time, the structural changes in the foot of a living gecko at the microscale can be observed when standing on a horizontal or vertical surface.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2204754
Issue number48
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Dec 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Korean Government Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT, Korea) (grant number 2016R1A5A1010148), Next‐Generation Biogreen 21 Program funded by the Rural Development Administration of the Republic of Korea (grant number PJ016004), Technology Innovation Program funded by the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy (MOTIE, Korea) (grant number 20018111), and Basic Science Research Program through the NRF funded by the Ministry of Education (grant number 2018R1D1A1B07046577).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Wiley-VCH GmbH.


  • high-resolution surface replication
  • living organisms
  • rapid precursor loading
  • replica molding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • General Chemistry
  • Biomaterials
  • General Materials Science


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