The development of functional legged robots has encountered its limits in human-made actuation technology. This paper describes research on the biomimetic design of legs for agile quadrupeds. A biomimetic leg concept that extracts key principles from horse legs which are responsible for the agile and powerful locomotion of these animals is presented. The proposed biomimetic leg model defines the effective leg length, leg kinematics, limb mass distribution, actuator power, and elastic energy recovery as determinants of agile locomotion, and values for these five key elements are given. The transfer of the extracted principles to technological instantiations is analyzed in detail, considering the availability of current materials, structures and actuators. A real leg prototype has been developed following the biomimetic leg concept proposed. The actuation system is based on the hybrid use of series elasticity and magneto-rheological dampers which provides variable compliance for natural motion. From the experimental evaluation of this prototype, conclusions on the current technological barriers to achieve real functional legged robots to walk dynamically in agile locomotion are presented.
legged robots; agile quadrupeds; biomimetic design; new actuators for robots
The repair of critical-sized bone defects is still challenging in the fields of implantology, maxillofacial surgery and orthopaedics. Current therapies such as autografts and allografts are associated with various limitations. Cytokine-based bone tissue engineering has been attracting increasing attention. Bone-inducing agents have been locally injected to stimulate the native bone-formation activity, but without much success. The reason is that these drugs must be delivered slowly and at a low concentration to be effective. This then mimics the natural method of cytokine release. For this purpose, a suitable vehicle was developed, the so-called biomimetic coating, which can be deposited on metal implants as well as on biomaterials. Materials that are currently used to fill bony defects cannot by themselves trigger bone formation. Therefore, biological functionalization of such materials by the biomimetic method resulted in a novel biomimetic coating onto different biomaterials. Bone morphogenetic protein 2 (BMP-2)-incorporated biomimetic coating can be a solution for a large bone defect repair in the fields of dental implantology, maxillofacial surgery and orthopaedics. Here, we review the performance of the biomimetic coating both in vitro and in vivo.
biomimetic; biphasic calcium phosphate coating; bone morphogenetic protein-2; bone tissue engineering
Natural materials exhibit anisotropy with variations in soluble factors, cell distribution, and matrix properties. The ability to recreate the heterogeneity of the natural materials is a major challenge for investigating cell-material interactions and for developing biomimetic materials. Here we present a generic fluidic approach using convection and alternating flow to rapidly generate multi-centimeter gradients of biomolecules, polymers, beads and cells and cross-gradients of two species in a microchannel. Accompanying theoretical estimates and simulations of gradient growth provide design criteria over a range of material properties. A poly(ethyleneglycol) hydrogel gradient, a porous collagen gradient and a composite material with a hyaluronic acid/gelatin cross-gradient were generated with continuous variations in material properties and in their ability to regulate cellular response. This simple yet generic fluidic platform should prove useful for creating anisotropic biomimetic materials and high-throughput platforms for investigating cell-microenvironment interaction.
anisotropic materials; composite materials; microfluidics; gradients
A biomimetic replacement for tooth enamel is urgently needed because dental caries is the most prevalent infectious disease to affect man. Here, design specifications for an enamel replacement material inspired by Nature are deployed for testing in an animal model. Using genetic engineering we created a simplified enamel protein matrix precursor where only one, rather than dozens of amelogenin isoforms, contributed to enamel formation. Enamel function and architecture were unaltered, but the balance between the competing materials properties of hardness and toughness was modulated. While the other amelogenin isoforms make a modest contribution to optimal biomechanical design, the enamel made with only one amelogenin isoform served as a functional substitute. Where enamel has been lost to caries or trauma a suitable biomimetic replacement material could be fabricated using only one amelogenin isoform, thereby simplifying the protein matrix parameters by one order of magnitude.
Biomimetic material; Biomineralization; ECM (extracellular matrix); Fracture toughness: Genetic engineering; Mechanical properties; Molecular biology
Biomimetic matrix material may be suitable for the long-term repair of inguinal hernia.
Background and Objectives:
Materials utilized for the repair of hernias fall into 2 broad categories, synthetics and biologics. Each has its merits and drawbacks. The synthetics have a permanent, inherent strength but are associated with some incidence of chronic pain. The biologics rely on variable tissue regeneration to give strength to the repair, limiting their use to specific situations. However, thanks to their transient presence and tissue ingrowth, the biologics do not result in a significant incidence of chronic pain. We studied the use of a biomimetic (REVIVE, Biomerix Corporation, Fremont, CA) in this setting in an attempt to obviate the disadvantages of each material.
Fourteen patients underwent laparoscopic repair by totally extraperitoneal and transabdominal preperitoneal techniques of 16 inguinal hernias. Follow-up was as long as 19 mo, and 8 patients were followed for > 12 mo. There were no recurrences and a 5% incidence of functionally insignificant discomfort.
REVIVE is shown in histology and in vivo to demonstrate regeneration and tissue ingrowth into the polycarbonate/polyuria matrix similar to that in the biologics rather than scarring or encapsulation. There were no recurrences, indicating its strength and resilience as a permanent repair similar to that in the synthetics.
This is proof of the concept that a biomimetic may bridge the gap between the biologics and synthetics and may be able to be utilized on a regular basis with the benefits of both materials and without their drawbacks.
Revive; biomimetic; synthetics; biologics; hernia
Biomimetic materials that mimic the extracellular matrix (ECM) provide a means to control cellular functions such as adhesion and growth, which are vital to successful engineering of tissue-incorporated biomaterials. Novel “ECM-like” biomimetic surfactant polymers consisting of a poly(vinyl amine) backbone with pendant cell-adhesive peptides derived from one of the heparin-binding domains of fibronectin were developed to improve endothelial cell adhesion and growth on vascular biomaterials. Heparin-binding peptide (HBP) sequences, alone and in combination with RGD peptides, were examined for their ability to promote human pulmonary artery endothelial cell (HPAEC) adhesion and growth (HBP1, WQPPRARI; HBP2, SPPRRARVT; HBP1:RGD; and HBP2:RGD) and compared with cell adhesion and growth on fibronectin and on negative control polymer surfaces in which alanines were substituted for the positively charged arginine residues in the two peptides. The results showed that HPAECs adhered and spread equally well on all HBP-containing polymers and the positive fibronectin control, showing similar stress fiber and focal adhesion formation. However, the HBP alone was unable to support long-term HPAEC growth and survival, showing a loss of focal adhesions and cytoskeletal disorganization by 24 h after seeding. With the addition of RGD, the surfaces behaved similarly or better than fibronectin. The negative control polymers showed little to no initial cell attachment, and the addition of soluble heparin to the medium reduced initial cell adhesion on both the HBP2 and HBP2:RGD surfaces. These results indicate that the HBP surfaces promote initial HPAEC adhesion and spreading, but not long-term survival.
The popularity of biomimetic membranes has recently increased due to their biomedical applications such as tissue engineering/regenerative medicine and biosensors. Characterization of the viscoelastic properties of these membranes is important in developing functional membranes. A new micro-shaft poking technique has been developed, which is free from the complication of substrate backing, and which is normally an intractable problem in conventional indentation testing of membrane materials. A tailored indentation apparatus with a spherical indenter and a force resolution and displacement of 1 μN and 1 μm was constructed. Alginate and agarose were used to fabricate biomimetic membranes. Chicken epidermis was examined to represent a real biological tissue. The results show that the elastic modulus increased with concentration in hydrogels. Epidermis moduli appeared to increase with increased strain. Stress relaxation tests have also been conducted to examine the time-dependent behaviours of various hydrogels and a viscoelastic model has been correspondingly developed and applied to describe the experimental results. Potential applications of this new instrument to other membranes, both artificial and biological, have also been addressed.
instrumentation; hydrogel; mechanical characterization; microengineering; biological tissue
Biomimetic nano-assembly formation offers a convenient and bio friendly approach to fabricate complex structures from simple components with sub-nanometer precision. Recently, biomimetic (employing microorganism/plants) synthesis of metal and inorganic materials nano-particles has emerged as a simple and viable strategy. In the present study, we have extended biological synthesis of nano-particles to organic molecules, namely the anticancer agent 5-fluorouracil (5-FU), using Aloe vera leaf extract.
The 5-FU nano- particles synthesized by using Aloe vera leaf extract were characterized by UV, FT-IR and fluorescence spectroscopic techniques. The size and shape of the synthesized nanoparticles were determined by TEM, while crystalline nature of 5-FU particles was established by X-ray diffraction study. The cytotoxic effects of 5-FU nanoparticles were assessed against HT-29 and Caco-2 (human adenocarcinoma colorectal) cell lines.
Transmission electron microscopy and atomic force microscopic techniques confirmed nano-size of the synthesized particles. Importantly, the nano-assembled 5-FU retained its anticancer action against various cancerous cell lines.
In the present study, we have explored the potential of biomimetic synthesis of nanoparticles employing organic molecules with the hope that such developments will be helpful to introduce novel nano-particle formulations that will not only be more effective but would also be devoid of nano-particle associated putative toxicity constraints.
Biocalcification of collagen matrices with calcium phosphate and biosilicification of diatom frustules with amorphous silica are two discrete processes that have intrigued biologists and materials scientists for decades. Recent advancements in the understanding of the mechanisms involved in these two biomineralisation processes have resulted in the use of biomimetic strategies to replicate these processes separately using polyanionic, polycationic or zwitterionic analogues of extracellular matrix proteins to stabilise amorphous mineral precursor phases. To date, there is a lack of a universal model that enables the subtleties of these two apparently dissimilar biomineralisation processes to be studied together. Here, we utilise the eggshell membrane as a universal model for differential biomimetic calcification and silicification. By manipulating the eggshell membrane to render it permeable to stabilised mineral precursors, it is possible to introduce nanostructured calcium phosphate or silica into eggshell membrane fibre cores or mantles. We provide a model for infiltrating the two compartmental niches of a biopolymer membrane with different intrafibre minerals to obtain materials with potentially improved structure-property relationships.
apatite; biomineralisation; silica; membrane
Fluoride-releasing restorative materials are available for remineralization of enamel and root caries. However, dentin remineralization is more difficult than enamel remineralization due to the paucity of apatite seed crystallites along the lesion surface for heterogeneous crystal growth. Extracellular matrix proteins play critical roles in controlling apatite nucleation/growth in collagenous tissues. This study examined the remineralization efficacy of mineral trioxide aggregate (MTA) in phosphate-containing simulated body fluid (SBF) by incorporating polyacrylic acid and sodium tripolyphosphate as biomimetic analogs of matrix proteins for remineralizing caries-like dentin. Artificial caries-like dentin lesions incubated in SBF were remineralized over a 6-week period using MTA or MTA containing biomimetic analogs in the absence or presence of dentin adhesive application. Lesion depths and integrated mineral loss were monitored with micro-computed tomography. Ultrastructure of baseline and remineralized lesions were examined by transmission electron microscopy. Dentin remineralization was best achieved using MTA containing biomimetic analogs regardless of whether an adhesive was applied; dentinal tubules within the remineralized dentin were occluded by apatite. It is concluded that the MTA version employed in the study may be doped with biomimetic analogs for remineralization of unbonded and bonded artificial caries-like lesions in the presence of SBF.
biomimetics; caries; micro-computed tomography; mineral trioxide aggregate; tubular occlusion
One of the main problems with current vascular stents is a lack of endothelial cell interactions, which if sufficient, would create a uniform healthy endothelium masking the underlying foreign metal from inflammatory cell interference. Moreover, if endothelial cells from the arterial wall do not adhere to the stent, the stent can become loose and dislodge. Therefore, the objective of this in vitro study was to design a novel biomimetic nanostructured coating (that does not contain drugs) on conventional vascular stent materials (specifically, titanium) for improving vascular stent applications. Rosette nanotubes (RNTs) are a new class of biomimetic nanotubes that self-assemble from DNA base analogs and have been shown in previous studies to sufficiently coat titanium and enhance osteoblast cell functions. RNTs have many desirable properties for use as vascular stent coatings including spontaneous self-assembly in body fluids, tailorable surface chemistry for specific implant applications, and nanoscale dimensions similar to those of the natural vascular extracellular matrix. Importantly, the results of this study provided the first evidence that RNTs functionalized with lysine (RNT–K), even at low concentrations, significantly increase endothelial cell density over uncoated titanium. Specifically, 0.01 mg/mL RNT–K coated titanium increased endothelial cell density by 37% and 52% compared to uncoated titanium after 4 h and three days, respectively. The excellent cytocompatibility properties of RNTs (as demonstrated here for the first time for endothelial cells) suggest the need for the further exploration of these novel nanostructured materials for vascular stent applications.
stents; nanotechnology; self-assembly; rosette nanotubes; endothelial cells; titanium
Bio-inspired material systems are derived from different living organisms such as plants, arthropods, mammals and marine organisms. These biomaterial systems from nature are always present in the form of composites, with molecular-scale interactions optimized to direct functional features. With interest in replacing synthetic materials with natural materials due to biocompatibility, sustainability and green chemistry issues, it is important to understand the molecular structure and chemistry of the raw component materials to also learn from their natural engineering, interfaces and interactions leading to durable and highly functional material architectures. This review will focus on applications of biomaterials in single material forms, as well as biomimetic composites inspired by natural organizational features. Examples of different natural composite systems will be described, followed by implementation of the principles underlying their composite organization into artificial bio-inspired systems for materials with new functional features for future medicine.
bio-inspired; cellulose; collagen; resilin; silk; SP1
Nature provides a wide range of materials with different functions and which may serve as a source of bio-inspiration for the materials scientist. The article takes the point of view that a successful translation of these ideas into the technical world requires more than the observation of nature. A thorough analysis of structure-function relations in natural tissues must precede the engineering of new bio-inspired materials. There are, indeed, many opportunities for lessons from the biological world: on growth and functional adaptation, about hierarchical structuring, on damage repair and self-healing. Biomimetic materials research is becoming a rapidly growing and enormously promising field. Serendipitous discovery from the observation of nature will be gradually replaced by a systematic approach involving the study of natural tissues in materials laboratories, the application of engineering principles to the further development of bio-inspired ideas and the generation of specific databases.
bionic; bio-inspired; adaptive; self-healing; hierarchical materials
Calcium phosphate materials are similar to bone in composition and in having bioactive and osteoconductive properties. Calcium phosphate materials in different forms, as cements, composites, and coatings, are used in many medical and dental applications. This paper reviews the applications of these materials in dentistry. It presents a brief history, dental applications, and methods for improving their mechanical properties. Notable research is highlighted regarding (1) application of calcium phosphate into various fields in dentistry; (2) improving mechanical properties of calcium phosphate; (3) biomimetic process and functionally graded materials. This paper deals with most common types of the calcium phosphate materials such as hydroxyapatite and tricalcium phosphate which are currently used in dental and medical fields.
Understanding the cues that guide axons and how we can optimize these cues to achieve directed neuronal growth is imperative for neural tissue engineering. Cells in the local environment influence neurons with a rich combination of cues. This study deconstructs the complex mixture of guidance cues by working at the biomimetic interface - isolating the topographical information presented by cells and determining its capacity to guide neurons. We generated replica materials presenting topographies of oriented astrocytes (ACs), endothelial cells (ECs), and Schwann cells (SCs) as well as computer-aided design materials inspired by the contours of these cells (bioinspired-CAD). These materials presented distinct topographies and anisotropies and in all cases were sufficient to guide neurons. Dorsal root ganglia (DRG) cells and neurites demonstrated the most directed response on bioinspired-CAD materials which presented anisotropic features with 90° edges. DRG alignment was strongest on SC bioinspired-CAD materials followed by AC bioinspired-CAD materials, with more uniform orientation to EC bioinspired-CAD materials. Alignment was strongest on SC replica materials followed by AC and EC replicas. These results suggest that the topographies of anisotropic tissue structures are sufficient for neuronal guidance. This work is discussed in the context of feature dimensions, morphology, and guidepost hypotheses.
astrocyte; Schwann cell; endothelial cell; dorsal root ganglia; biomaterial; replica; topography; axon guidance; contact guidance
Living organisms are adept in forming inorganic materials (biominerals) with unique structures and properties that exceed the capabilities of engineered materials. Biomimetic materials syntheses are being developed that aim at replicating the advantageous properties of biominerals in vitro and endow them with additional functionalities. Recently, proof-of-concept was provided for an alternative approach that allows for the production of biomineral-based functional materials in vivo. In this approach, the cellular machinery for the biosynthesis of nano-/micropatterned SiO2 (silica) structures in diatoms was genetically engineered to incorporate a monomeric, cofactor-independent (“simple”) enzyme, HabB, into diatom silica. In the present work, it is demonstrated that this approach is also applicable for enzymes with “complex” activity requirements, including oligomerization, metal ions, organic redox cofactors, and posttranslational modifications. Functional expression of the enzymes β-glucuronidase, glucose oxidase, galactose oxidase, and horseradish peroxidase in the diatom Thalassiosira pseudonana was accomplished, and 66 to 78% of the expressed enzymes were stably incorporated into the biosilica. The in vivo incorporated enzymes represent approximately 0.1% (wt/wt) of the diatom biosilica and are stabilized against denaturation and proteolytic degradation. Furthermore, it is demonstrated that the gene construct for in vivo immobilization of glucose oxidase can be utilized as the first negative selection marker for diatom genetic engineering.
Titanium and its alloys are currently the mainly used materials to manufacture orthopaedic implants due to their excellent mechanical properties and corrosion resistance. Although these materials are bioinert, the improvement of biological properties (e.g., bone implant contact) can be obtained by the application of a material that mimics the bone extracellular matrix. To this aim, this work describes a new method to produce nanostructured collagen-apatite composites on titanium alloy substrate, by combining electrospinning and biomimetic mineralization. The characterization results showed that the obtained mineralized scaffolds have morphological, structural, and chemical compositional features similar to natural bone extracellular matrix. Finally, the topographic distribution of the chemical composition in the mineralized matrix evaluated by Fourier Transform Infrared microspectroscopy demonstrated that the apatite nanocrystals cover the collagen fibers assembled by the electrospinning.
The treatment of oral and periodontal diseases and associated anomalies accounts for a significant proportion of the healthcare burden, with the manifestations of these conditions being functionally and psychologically debilitating. A challenge faced by periodontal therapy is the predictable regeneration of periodontal tissues lost as a consequence of disease. Growth factors are critical to the development, maturation, maintenance and repair of oral tissues as they establish an extra-cellular environment that is conducive to cell and tissue growth. Tissue engineering principles aim to exploit these properties in the development of biomimetic materials that can provide an appropriate microenvironment for tissue development. The aim of this paper is to review emerging periodontal therapies in the areas of materials science, growth factor biology and cell/gene therapy. Various such materials have been formulated into devices that can be used as vehicles for delivery of cells, growth factors and DNA. Different mechanisms of drug delivery are addressed in the context of novel approaches to reconstruct and engineer oral and tooth supporting structure.
Key words: Periodontal disease, gene therapy, regeneration, tissue repair, growth factors, tissue engineering.
The design criteria for matrices for encapsulation of cells for cell therapy include chemical, biological, engineering, marketing, regulatory, and financial constraints. What is required is a biocompatible material for culture of cells in three-dimensions (3-D) that offers ease of use, experimental flexibility to alter composition and compliance, and a composition that would permit a seamless transition from in vitro to in vivo use. The challenge is to replicate the complexity of the native extracellular matrix (ECM) environment with the minimum number of components necessary to allow cells to rebuild a given tissue. Our approach is to deconstruct the ECM to a few modular components that can be reassembled into biomimetic materials that meet these criteria. These semi-synthetic ECMs (sECMs) employ thiol-modified derivatives of hyaluronic acid (HA) that can form covalently crosslinked, biodegradable hydrogels. These sECMs are “living” biopolymers, meaning that they can be crosslinked in the presence of cells or tissues to enable cell therapy and tissue engineering. Moreover, the sECMs allow inclusion of the appropriate biological cues needed to simulate the complexity of the ECM of a given tissue. Taken together, the sECM technology offers a manufacturable, highly reproducible, flexible, FDA-approvable, and affordable vehicle for cell expansion and differentiation in 3-D.
hyaluronan; 3-D cell culture; tissue engineering; extracellular matrix; crosslinked hydrogel; design criteria; commercial utility; stem cells; regenerative medicine
Liquid crystal elastomers (LCEs) have recently been described as a new class of matter. Here we review the evidence for the novel conclusion that the fibrillar collagens and the dragline silks of orb web spiders belong to this remarkable class of materials. Unlike conventional rubbers, LCEs are ordered, rather than disordered, at rest. The identification of these biopolymers as LCEs may have a predictive value. It may explain how collagens and spider dragline silks are assembled. It may provide a detailed explanation for their mechanical properties, accounting for the variation between different members of the collagen family and between the draglines in different spider species. It may provide a basis for the design of biomimetic collagen and dragline silk analogues by genetic engineering, peptide- or classical polymer synthesis. Biological LCEs may exhibit a range of exotic properties already identified in other members of this remarkable class of materials. In this paper, the possibility that other transversely banded fibrillar proteins are also LCEs is discussed.
The treatment of oral and periodontal diseases and associated anomalies accounts for a significant proportion of the healthcare burden, with the manifestations of these conditions being functionally and psychologically debilitating. Growth factors are critical to the development, maturation, maintenance and repair of craniofacial tissues, as they establish an extracellular environment that is conducive to cell and tissue growth. Tissue-engineering principles aim to exploit these properties in the development of biomimetic materials that can provide an appropriate microenvironment for tissue development. These materials have been constructed into devices that can be used as vehicles for delivery of cells, growth factors and DNA. In this review, different mechanisms of drug delivery are addressed in the context of novel approaches to reconstruct and engineer oral- and tooth-supporting structures, namely the periodontium and alveolar bone.
biomimetics; gene therapy; osteogenesis; periodontal regeneration; tissue repair; wound healing
The common technique of growing cells in two-dimensions (2-D) is gradually being replaced by culturing cells on matrices with more appropriate composition and stiffness, or by encapsulation of cells in three-dimensions (3-D). The universal acceptance of the new 3-D paradigm has been constrained by the absence of a commercially available, biocompatible material that offers ease of use, experimental flexibility, and a seamless transition from in vitro to in vivo applications. The challenge – the puzzle that needs a solution – is to replicate the complexity of the native extracellular matrix (ECM) environment with the minimum number of components necessary to allow cells to rebuild and replicate a given tissue. For use in drug discovery, toxicology, cell banking, and ultimately in reparative medicine, the ideal matrix would therefore need to be highly reproducible, manufacturable, approvable, and affordable. Herein we describe the development of a set of modular components that can be assembled into biomimetic materials that meet these requirements. These semi-synthetic ECMs, or sECMs, are based on hyaluronan derivatives that form covalently crosslinked, biodegradable hydrogels suitable for 3-D culture of primary and stem cells in vitro, and for tissue formation in vivo. The sECMs can be engineered to provide appropriate biological cues needed to recapitulate the complexity of a given ECM environment. Specific applications for different sECM compositions include stem cell expansion with control of differentiation, scar-free wound healing, growth factor delivery, cell delivery for osteochondral defect and liver repair, and development of vascularized tumor xenografts for personalized chemotherapy.
semi-synthetic extracellular matrices; modular macromonomers; biomimetic materials
A biomimetic approach involving the self-assembly of mineral within the pores of three-dimensional porous polymer scaffolds is a promising strategy to integrate advantages of inorganic and organic phases into a single material for hard tissue engineering. Such a material enhances the ability of progenitor cells to differentiate down an osteoblast lineage in vitro and in vivo, compared with polymer scaffolds. The mechanisms regulating mineral formation in this one-step process, however, are poorly understood, especially the effects of ionic activity products (IP) of the mineralizing solution and incubation time. The aims of this study were to define the structure and composition of mineral formed within the pores of biodegradable polymer scaffolds as a function of IP and time. Three-dimensional poly(lactide-co-glycolide) scaffolds were fabricated by solvent casting/particulate leaching and incubated for 4–16 days in six variants of simulated body fluid whose IPs were varied by adjusting ionic concentrations. Scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy demonstrated the formation of carbonated apatite with sub-micrometer sized crystals that grew into spherical globules extending out of the scaffold pore surfaces. As IP increased, more mineral grew on the scaffold pore surfaces, but the apatite became less crystalline and the Ca/P molar ratio decreased from 1.63 ± 0.005 to 1.51 ± 0.002. Since morphology, composition, and structure of mineral are factors that affect cell function, this study demonstrates that the IP of the mineralizing solution is an important modulator of material properties, potentially leading to enhanced control of cell function.
biomimetic; mineralization; apatite; ionic activity products; scaffold
The field of biomaterial design has begun to focus upon methods by which materials can modulate immune response. While certain approaches appear promising, they are limited to isolated facets of inflammation. It is well documented that both bacteria and viruses have highly developed methods for evading the immune system, providing impetus for a more biomimetic approach to material design. This review presents the immune evasive tactics employed by viruses and bacteria and offers suggestions for future directions in applying these principles to biomaterial design.
inflammation; wound healing; immunomodulation; bacteria; biomimetic material
In this work, we present a class of hydrogels that leverage the favorable properties of the photocrosslinkable hyaluronic acid (HA) and semi-interpenetrating collagen components. The mechanical properties of the semi-interpenetrating network (semi-IPN) hydrogels far surpass those achievable with collagen gels or collagen gel based semi-IPNs. Furthermore, the inclusion of the semi-interpenetrating collagen chains provides a synergistic mechanical improvement in comparison to unmodified HA hydrogels. Collagen-HA semi-IPNs supported fibroblast adhesion and proliferation and were shown to be suitable for cell encapsulation at high levels of cell viability. To demonstrate the utility of the semi-IPNs as a microscale tissue engineering material, cell laden microstructures and microchannels were fabricated via soft lithographic techniques. Given their enhanced mechanical and biomimetic properties, we anticipate that these materials will be of value in tissue engineering and 3D cell culture applications.
hydrogels; tissue engineering; semi-interpenetrating network; hyaluronic acid; collagen