Cellular production of such cytokines as interferon (IFN)-γ and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α is used to determine disease-specific immune responses and may be used to diagnose infectious diseases such as tuberculosis. In this paper, we describe the development of micropatterned electrodes functionalized with electroactive aptamers for multiplexed detection of immune-cell-produced cytokines. A sequence of electrode deprotection and aptamer incubation steps were used to assemble anti–IFN–γ DNA aptamers and anti-TNF-α RNA aptamers on individually addressable half-ring electrodes. Aptamer molecules were thiolated for assembly on gold and were functionalized with methylene blue redox reporter for electrochemical signal transduction. Specificity of individual sensors to the correct cytokine species was confirmed by exposure to recombinant cytokines. For cell detection experiments, electrode arrays were integrated into microfluidic devices and incubated with immune cells. Design of the surface was such that a small group of ~400 cells attached in the circular adhesion sites surrounded by half-ring electrodes sensing IFN-γ and TNF-α. The microdevice consisted of two parallel microfluidic channels, each channel containing four cell capture/sensing sites. Upon mitogenic activation, secreted IFN-γ and TNF-α molecules were monitored by performing square wave voltammetry (SWV) at different time points at individually addressable electrodes. This biosensing platform was used to analyze the quantity and rate of cytokine release from primary T cells and a monocyte cell line. Upon further development of this platform may be enhanced to enable detection of larger number of cytokines and used to correlate the levels and dynamics of cytokine release in immune cells to diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases.
Cytokine biosensors; Aptasensors; Blood analysis; Surface modification; Micropatterning
Angiogenesis plays a prominent role in cancer progression. Anti-angiogenic therapy therefore, either alone or in combination with conventional cytotoxic therapy, offers a promising therapeutic approach. Paclitaxel (PTX) is a widely-used potent cytotoxic drug that also exhibits anti-angiogenic effects at low doses. However, its use, at its full potential, is limited by severe side effects. Here we designed and synthesized a targeted conjugate of PTX, a polymer and an integrin-targeted moiety resulting in a polyglutamic acid (PGA)-PTX-E-[c(RGDfK)2] nano-scaled conjugate. Polymer conjugation converted PTX to a macromolecule, which passively targets the tumor tissue exploiting the enhanced permeability and retention effect, while extravasating via the leaky tumor neovasculature. The cyclic RGD peptidomimetic enhanced the effects previously seen for PGA-PTX alone, utilizing the additional active targeting to the αvβ3 integrin overexpressed on tumor endothelial and epithelial cells. This strategy is particularly valuable when tumors are well-vascularized, but they present poor vascular permeability. We show that PGA is enzymatically-degradable leading to PTX release under lysosomal acidic pH. PGA-PTX-E-[c(RGDfK)2] inhibited the growth of proliferating αvβ3-expressing endothelial cells and several cancer cells. We also showed that PGA-PTX-E-[c(RGDfK)2] blocked endothelial cells migration towards vascular endothelial growth factor; blocked capillary-like tube formation; and inhibited endothelial cells attachment to fibrinogen. Orthotopic studies in mice demonstrated preferential tumor accumulation of the RGD-bearing conjugate, leading to enhanced antitumor efficacy and a marked decrease in toxicity as compared with free PTX-treated mice.
Angiogenesis; polymer therapeutics; Polyglutamic acid; paclitaxel; RGD peptidomimetic; integrin
Collagen and elastin networks contribute to highly specialized biomechanical responses in numerous tissues and species. Biomechanical properties such as modulus, elasticity, and strength ultimately affect tissue function and durability, as well as local cellular behavior. In the case of vascular bypass grafts, compliance at physiologic pressures is correlated with increased patency due to a reduction in anastomotic intimal hyerplasia. In this report, we combine extracellular matrix (ECM) protein analogues to yield multilamellar vascular grafts comprised of a recombinant elastin-like protein matrix reinforced with synthetic collagen microfibers. Structural analysis revealed that the fabrication scheme permits a range of fiber orientations and volume fractions, leading to tunable mechanical properties. Burst strengths of 239–2760 mm Hg, compliances of 2.8–8.4%/100 mm Hg, and suture retention strengths of 35–192 gf were observed. The design most closely approximating all target criteria displayed a burst strength of 1483 ± 43 mm Hg, a compliance of 5.1 ± 0.8%/100 mm Hg, and a suture retention strength of 173 ± 4 gf. These results indicate that through incorporation of reinforcing collagen microfibers, recombinant elastomeric protein-based biomaterials can play a significant role in load bearing tissue substitutes. We believe that similar composites can be incorporated into tissue engineering schemes that seek to integrate cells within the structure, prior to or after implantation in vivo.
Elastin; Collagen; Mechanical properties; Fiber-reinforced composite; Vascular graft; Recombinant protein
Ischemic heart disease is a leading cause of death, with few options to retain ventricular function following myocardial infarction. Hematopoietic-derived progenitor cells contribute to angiogenesis and tissue repair following ischemia reperfusion injury. Motivated by the role of bone marrow extracellular matrix (BM-ECM) in supporting the proliferation and regulation of these cell populations, we investigated BM-ECM injection in myocardial repair. In BM-ECM isolated from porcine sternum, we identified several factors important for myocardial healing, including vascular endothelial growth factor, basic fibroblast growth factor-2, and platelet-derived growth factor-BB. We further determined that BM-ECM serves as an adhesive substrate for endothelial cell proliferation. Bone marrow ECM was injected in a rat model of myocardial infarction, with and without a methylcellulose carrier gel. After one day, reduced infarct area was noted in rats receiving BM-ECM injection. After seven days we observed improved fractional shortening, decreased apoptosis, and significantly lower macrophage counts in the infarct border. Improvements in fractional shortening, sustained through 21 days, as well as decreased fibrotic area, enhanced angiogenesis, and greater c-kit-positive cell presence were associated with BM-ECM injection. Notably, the concentrations of BM-ECM growth factors were 103–108 fold lower than typically required to achieve a beneficial effect, as reported in pre-clinical studies that have administered single growth factors alone.
Bone marrow; Growth factors; ECM (extracellular matrix); Heart; Thermally responsive material; Porcine tissue
Reconstruction of large bone defects remains problematic in orthopedic and craniofacial clinical practice. Autografts are limited in supply and are associated with donor site morbidity while other materials show poor integration with the host’s own bone. This lack of integration is often due to the absence of periosteum, the outer layer of bone that contains osteoprogenitor cells and is critical for the growth and remodeling of bone tissue. In this study we developed a one-step platform to electrospin nanofibrous scaffolds from chitosan, which also contain hydroxyapatite nanoparticles and are crosslinked with genipin. We hypothesized that the resulting composite scaffolds represent a microenvironment that emulates the physical, mineralized structure and mechanical properties of non-weight bearing bone extracellular matrix while promoting osteoblast differentiation and maturation similar to the periosteum. The ultrastructure and physicochemical properties of the scaffolds were studied using scanning electron microscopy and spectroscopic techniques. The average fiber diameters of the electrospun scaffolds were 227±154 nm as spun, and increased to 335±119 nm after crosslinking with genipin. Analysis by X-ray diffraction, Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy and energy dispersive spectroscopy confirmed the presence of characteristic features of hydroxyapatite in the composite chitosan fibers. The Young’s modulus of the composite fibrous scaffolds was 142±13 MPa, which is similar to that of the natural periosteum. Both pure chitosan scaffolds and composite hydroxyapatite-containing chitosan scaffolds supported adhesion, proliferation and osteogenic differentiation of mouse 7F2 osteoblast-like cells. Expression and enzymatic activity of alkaline phosphatase, an early osteogenic marker, were higher in cells cultured on the composite scaffolds as compared to pure chitosan scaffolds, reaching a significant, 2.4 fold, difference by day 14 (p<0.05). Similarly, cells cultured on hydroxyapatite-containing scaffolds had the highest rate of osteonectin mRNA expression over 2 weeks, indicating enhanced osteoinductivity of the composite scaffolds. Our results suggest that crosslinking electrospun hydroxyapatite-containing chitosan with genipin yields bio-composite scaffolds, which combine non-weight-bearing bone mechanical properties with a periosteum-like environment and facilitate the proliferation, differentiation and maturation of osteoblast-like cells. We propose that these scaffolds might be useful for the repair and regeneration of maxillofacial defects and injuries.
Chitosan; hydroxyapatite; genipin; electrospinning; bone tissue engineering; osteoblast differentiation
Engineering of organized vasculature is a crucial step in the development of functional and clinically relevant tissue constructs. A number of previous techniques have been proposed to spatially regulate the distribution of angiogenic biomolecules and vascular cells within biomaterial matrices to promote vascularization. Most of these approaches have been limited to two-dimensional (2D) micropatterned features or have resulted in formation of random vasculature within three-dimensional (3D) microenvironments. In this study, we investigate 3D endothelial cord formation within micropatterned gelatin methacrylate (GelMA) hydrogels with varying geometrical features (50–150 µm height). We demonstrated the significance dependence of endothelial cells proliferation, alignment and cord formation on geometrical dimensions of the patterned features. The cells were able to align and organize within the micropatterned constructs and assemble to form cord structures with organized actin fibers and circular/elliptical cross-sections. The inner layer of the cord structure was filled with gel showing that the micropatterned hydrogel constructs guided the assembly of endothelial cells into cord structures. Notably, the endothelial cords were retained within the hydrogel microconstructs for all geometries after two weeks of culture; however, only the 100 µm-high constructs provided the optimal microenvironment for the formation of circular and stable cord structures. Our findings suggest that endothelial cord formation is a preceding step to tubulogenesis and the proposed system can be used to develop organized vasculature for engineered tissue constructs.
Microfabrication; Hydrogel; Gelatin methacrylate; Endothelial cells; Cords
Surface structural modifications at the micrometer and nanometer scales have driven improved success rates of dental and orthopaedic implants by mimicking the hierarchical structure of bone. However, how initial osteoblast-lineage cells populating an implant surface respond to different hierarchical surface topographical cues remains to be elucidated, with bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) or immature osteoblasts as possible initial colonizers. Here we show that in the absence of any exogenous soluble factors, osteoblastic maturation of primary human osteoblasts (HOBs) but not osteoblastic differentiation of MSCs is strongly influenced by nanostructures superimposed onto a microrough Ti6Al4V (TiAlV) alloy. The sensitivity of osteoblasts to both surface microroughness and nanostructures led to a synergistic effect on maturation and local factor production. Osteoblastic differentiation of MSCs was sensitive to TiAlV surface microroughness with respect to production of differentiation markers, but no further enhancement was found when cultured on micro/nanostructured surfaces. Superposition of nanostructures to microroughened surfaces affected final MSC numbers and enhanced production of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) but the magnitude of the response was lower than for HOB cultures. Our results suggest that the differentiation state of osteoblast-lineage cells determines the recognition of surface nanostructures and subsequent cell response, which has implications for clinical evaluation of new implant surface nanomodifications.
(4 to 6) metallic implants; osteointegration; titanium aluminum vanadium alloy; bone; nanostructures; osteoblast differentiation
Tissue-engineered constructs designed to treat large cartilage defects or osteoarthritic lesions may be exposed to significant mechanical loading as well as an inflammatory environment upon implantation in an injured or diseased joint. We hypothesized that a three-dimensionally (3D) woven poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) scaffold seeded with bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) would provide biomimetic mechanical properties in early stages of in vitro culture as the MSCs assembled a functional, cartilaginous extracellular matrix (ECM). We also hypothesized that these properties would be maintained even in the presence of the pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-1 (IL-1), which is found at high levels in injured or diseased joints. MSC-seeded 3D woven scaffolds cultured in chondrogenic conditions synthesized a functional ECM rich in collagen and proteoglycan content, reaching an aggregate modulus of ~0.75 MPa within 14 days of culture. However, the presence of pathophysiologically relevant levels of IL-1 limited matrix accumulation and inhibited any increase in mechanical properties over baseline values. On the other hand, the mechanical properties of constructs cultured in chondrogenic conditions for 4 weeks prior to IL-1 exposure were protected from deleterious effects of the cytokine. These findings demonstrate that IL-1 significantly inhibits the chondrogenic development and maturation of MSC-seeded constructs; however, the overall mechanical functionality of the engineered tissue can be preserved through the use of a 3D woven scaffold designed to recreate the mechanical properties of native articular cartilage.
cytokine; articular cartilage; tissue engineering; textile; stem cell; mesenchymal stem cell; differentiation; fiber; inflammation; fabric
Cancer cells cultured in physiologically relevant, three-dimensional (3D) matrices can recapture many essential features of native tumor tissues. In this study, a hyaluronic acid (HA)-based bilayer hydrogel system that not only supports the tumoroid formation from LNCaP prostate cancer (PCa) cells, but also simulates their reciprocal interactions with the tumor-associated stroma was developed and characterized. HA hydrogels were prepared by mixing solutions of HA precursors functionalized with acrylate groups (HA-AC) and reactive thiols (HA-SH) under physiological conditions. The resultant viscoelastic gels have an average elastic modulus of 234 ± 30 Pa and can be degraded readily by hyaluronidase. The orthogonal and cytocompatible nature of the crosslinking chemistry permits facile incorporation of cytokine-releasing particles and PCa cells. In our bilayer hydrogel construct, the top layer contains heparin (HP)-decorated, HA-based hydrogel particles (HGPs) capable of releasing heparin-binding epidermal growth factor-like growth factor (HB-EGF) in a sustained manner at a rate of 2.5wt%/day cumulatively. LNCaP cells embedded in the bottom layer receive the growth factor signals from the top, and in response form enlarging tumoroids with an average diameter of 85 μm by day 7. Cells in 3D hydrogels assemble into spherical tumoroids, form close cellular contacts through E-cadherin, and show cortical organization of F-actin, whereas those plated as 2D monolayers adopt a spread-out morphology. Compared to cells cultured on 2D, the engineered tumoroids significantly increased the expression of two pro-angiogenic factors, vascular endothelial growth factor-165 (VEGF165) and interleukin-8 (IL-8), both at mRNA and protein levels. Overall, the HA model system provides a useful platform for the study of tumor cell responses to growth factors and for screening of anticancer drugs targeting these pathways.
Hyaluronic Acid; Hydrogels; 3D Tumor Model; Growth Factor; Prostate Cancer; Tumoroid
Rebuilding injured tissue for regenerative medicine requires technologies to reproduce tissue/biomaterials mimicking the natural morphology. To reconstitute the tissue pattern, current approaches include using scaffold with specific structure to plate cells, guiding cell spreading, or directly moving cells to desired locations. However, the structural complexity is limited. Also, the artificially-defined patterns are usually disorganized by cellular self-organization in the subsequent tissue development, such as cell migration and cell-cell communication. Here, by working in concert with cellular self-organization rather than against it, we experimentally and mathematically demonstrate a method which directs self-organizing vascular mesenchymal cells (VMCs) to assemble into desired multicellular patterns. Incorporating the inherent chirality of VMCs revealed by interfacing with micro-engineered substrates and VMCs’ spontaneous aggregation, difference in distribution of initial cell plating can be amplified into the formation of exquisite radial structures or concentric rings mimicking the cross-sectional structure of liver lobules or osteons, respectively. Furthermore, when co-cultured with VMCs, non-pattern-forming endothelial cells tracked along the VMCs and formed a coherent radial or ring pattern in a coordinated manner, indicating the applicability to heterotypical cell organization.
Micropatterning; Self assembly; Co-culture; Mesenchymal Stem Cell
Hydrogel materials that display inherent activity against bacteria can be used to directly treat accessible wounds to prevent or kill existing infection. Hydrogels composed of self-assembling β-hairpin peptides, having a high content of arginine, were found to be extremely effective at killing both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria, including multi-drug resistant P. aeruginosa. No added antibacterial agents are necessary to realize activity. Using self-assembling peptides for material construction allows facile structure-activity relationships to be determined since changes in peptide sequence at the monomer level are directly transposed to the bulk material's antibacterial properties. SAR studies show that arginine content largely influences the hydrogel's antibacterial activity, and influences their bulk rheological properties. These studies culminated in an optimized gel, composed of the peptide PEP6R (VKVRVRVRVDPPTRVRVRVKV). PEP6R gels prepared at 1.5 wt % or higher concentration, demonstrate high potency against bacteria, but are cytocompatible towards human erythrocytes as well as mammalian mesenchymal stem cells. Rheological studies indicate that the gel is moderately stiff and displays shear-thin recovery behavior, allowing its delivery via simple syringe.
Hematogenous metastasis involves a glycoprotein mediated adhesion cascade of tumor cells with E-selectin on the endothelial layer of the blood vessels. Cell-cell interactions play a major role in cancer metastasis and invasiveness. Intercellular communication between two cancer cells or between a cancer cell with a stromal cell in the microenvironment such as fibroblasts or inflammatory cells play an important role in metastatic invasion. Culturing tumor cells as 3D spheroids can recapitulate these physiologically relevant cell-cell interactions. The heterogeneity in primary tumor is attributed to cell subpopulations with varying degree of invasiveness. Co-culturing cancer cells with different phenotypes as 3D spheroids can mimic this heterogeneity. Here we report, the effect of homotypic and heterotypic interactions in breast cancer cells cultured as 3D spheroids on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) on the adhesion phenotype to E-selectin. We show that breast cancer cell lines (BT20 and MCF7) propagating as 3D spheroids on PDMS exhibit a stronger interaction with human recombinant E-selectin when compared to their respective monolayer grown counterparts on tissue culture plate (TCP). Matrigel invasion assay also indicated that BT20 and MCF7 spheroids were more invasive than BT20 and MCF7 cells grown as monolayers. To mimic tumor heterogeneity in vitro, a co-culture model included tumorigenic cell lines BT20, MCF7 and a non-tumorigenic mammary epithelial cell line MCF10A. These cell lines were cultured together in equal seeding ratio on PDMS to generate co-culture spheroids. The heterotypic interactions in the co-culture model resulted in enhancement of the adhesion of the most invasive BT20 cell line to E-selectin. BT20 cells in co-culture bound to the greatest degree to soluble E-selectin compared to MCF7 and MCF10A cells in co-culture. Co-invasion assay with co-culture spheroids indicated that BT20 cells in co-culture were more invasive than MCF7 and MCF10A cells. The results presented here indicate that homotypic and heterotypic interaction in cancer cells favor adhesion to E-selectin thus representing a complexity beyond planar cell culture. Also, when cells of different phenotypes are mixed, the heterogeneity enhances the adhesive phenotype and invasiveness of the most invasive cell population. The results challenge the classic use of planar cell culture for evaluating the adhesion of cancer cells with E-selectin and establish our co-culture technique as a model that can help investigative studies in metastasis and invasiveness of breast and other types of cancers.
We have used a modified 3D cellular microarray platform for the high-throughput analysis of growth, cytotoxicity, and protein expression profile of a human hepatocellular carcinoma cell line, HepG2, in alginate. The results obtained were compared to analogous studies in 2D and 3D environments at the microtiter scale. The antiproliferative effects of four drugs, tamoxifen, 5-fluorouracil, doxorubicin, and amitriptyline, were studied as a function of seeding density in the three different culture platforms. The chemosensitivity of HepG2 cells to all four compounds decreased substantially with increasing cell number in the 2D and 3D microtiter-based cultures, while no seeding density-dependence was observed in the IC50 values obtained in the 3D microarray culture platform. These results can be rationalized based on the development of confluence-dependent resistance in cultures where proliferation is restricted by cell-cell contacts and nutrient availability, as is the case for both of the microtiter-based cultures. Additionally, further development of an on-chip, in-cell immunofluorescence assay provided quantitative data on the levels of specific target proteins involved in proliferation, adhesion, angiogenesis and drug metabolism, and was used to compare expression profiles between 2D and 3D environments. The up-regulation of several CYP450 enzymes, β1-integrin and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in the 3D microarray cultures suggests that this platform provides a more in vivo-like environment allowing cells to approach their natural phenotype.
3D cell culture; microarray; high-throughput; drug resistance
In the field of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine there is significant unmet need for critically-sized, fully degradable biomaterial scaffold systems with tunable properties for optimizing tissue formation in vitro and tissue regeneration in vivo. To address this need, we have developed a silk-based scaffold platform that has tunable material properties, including localized and bioactive functionalization, degradation rate, and mechanical properties and that provides arrays of linear hollow channels for delivery of oxygen and nutrients throughout the scaffold bulk. The scaffolds can be assembled with dimensions that range from millimeters to centimeters, addressing the need for a critically-sized platform for tissue formation. We demonstrate that the hollow channel arrays support localized and confluent endothelialization. This new platform offers a unique and versatile tool for engineering `tailored' scaffolds for a range of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine needs.
Peripheral nerve repair across long gaps remains clinically challenging despite progress made with autograft transplantation. While scaffolds that present trophic factors and extracellular matrix molecules have been designed, matching the performance of autograft-induced repair has been challenging. In this study, we explored the effect of cytokine mediated ‘biasing’ of macrophage phenotypes on Schwann cell (SC) migration and axonal regeneration in vitro and in vivo. Macrophage phenotype was successfully modulated by local delivery of either Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) or Interleukin-4 (IL-4) within polymeric nerve guidance channels, polarizing them toward pro-inflammatory (M1) or pro-healing (M2a and M2c) phenotypes, respectively. The initial polarization of macrophages to M2a and M2c phenotype results in enhanced SC infiltration and substantially faster axonal growth in a critically-sized rat sciatic nerve gap model (15 mm). The ratio of pro-healing to pro-inflammatory population of macrophages (CD206+/CCR7+), defined as regenerative bias, demonstrates a linear relationship with the number of axons at the distal end of the nerve scaffolds. The present results clearly suggest that rather than the extent of macrophage presence, their specific phenotype at the site of injury regulates the regenerative outcomes.
Immunomodulation; Nerve regeneration; Macrophage; Cytokine; Scaffold
The microclimate pH (µpH) in biodegradable polymers, such as poly(D,L-lactic-coglycolic acid) (PLGA) 50/50, commonly falls to deleterious acidic levels during biodegradation, resulting in instability of encapsulated acid-labile molecules. The µpH distribution in microspheres of a more hydrophilic polyester, poly(D,L-lactide-co-hydroxymethyl glycolide) (PLHMGA), was measured and compared to that in PLGA 50/50 of similar molecular weight and degradation time scales. pH mapping in the polymers was performed after incubation under physiological conditions by using a previously validated ratiometric confocal laser scanning microscopic (CLSM) method. Confocal µpH maps revealed that PLHMGA microspheres, regardless of copolymer composition, developed a far less acidic µpH during 4 weeks of incubation compared with microspheres from PLGA. A pH-independent fluorescent probe marker of polymer matrix diffusion of µpH-controlling water-soluble acid degradation products, bodipy, was observed by CLSM to diffuse ~3–7 fold more rapidly in PLHMGA compared to PLGA microspheres, consistent with much more rapid release of acids observed from the hydrophilic polymer during bioerosion. Hence, PLHMGA microspheres are less susceptible to acidification during degradation as compared to similar PLGA formulations, and therefore, PLHMGA may be more suitable to deliver acid labile molecules such as proteins.
microclimate pH; confocal laser scanning microscopy; hydrophilic polyesters; microsphere; pH distribution; poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid)
Although alginate-poly-L-lysine (APL) encapsulation of cells producing bioactive peptides has been widely tested, it is unknown whether APL supports lasting catabolic functions of encapsulated cells in adipose tissue, which are required for obesity reduction. We tested functions of APL-encapsulated fibroblasts isolated from wild-type (WT) and aldehyde dehydrogenase 1a1 knockout mice (KO), which resist obesity on a high-fat (HF) diet, have a higher metabolic rate, and express increased levels of thermogenic uncoupling protein-1 (Ucp1) in their deleterious visceral fat depots compared to WT mice. To enable in vivo detection and quantification, fibroblasts were stably transfected with green-fluorescent protein. WT- or KO-containing microcapsules were injected into two visceral depots of WT mice fed an HF diet. Eighty days after transplantation, microcapsules were located in vivo using magnetic resonance imaging. KO microcapsules prevented weight gain in obese WT mice compared to a mock- and WT capsule-injected groups on an HF diet. The weight loss in KO-treated mice corresponded to lipid reduction and induction of thermogenesis in the injected visceral fat. The non-treated subcutaneous fat was not altered. Our data suggest that the APL polymer supports long-term catabolic functions of genetically-modified fibroblasts, which can be potentially used for depot-specific obesity treatment.
Vitamin A; Aldehyde dehydrogenase; Abdominal obesity; Insulin resistance; Magnetic resonance imaging; Laser capture microdissection; Alginate-poly-L-lysine; Uncoupling protein 1; Thermogenesis; Lipolysis; Retinoids
Nitric oxide (NO) releasing films with a bilayer configuration are fabricated by doping dibutyhexyldiamine diazeniumdiolate (DBHD/N2O2) in a poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) layer and further encapsulating this base layer with a silicone rubber top coating. By incorporating pH sensitive dyes within the films, pH changes in the PLGA layer are visualized and correlated with the NO release profiles (flux vs. time). It is demonstrated that PLGA acts as both a promoter and controller of NO release from the coating by providing protons through its intrinsic acid residues (both end-groups and monomeric acid impurities) and hydrolysis products (lactic acid and glycolic acid). Control of the pH changes within the PLGA layer can be achieved by adjusting the ratio of DBHD/N2O2 and utilizing PLGAs with different hydrolysis rates. Coatings with a variety of NO release profiles are prepared with lifetimes of up to 15 d at room temperature (23 °C) and 10 d at 37 °C. When incubated in a CDC flow bioreactor for a one-week period at RT or 37 °C, all the NO releasing films exhibit considerable antibiofilm properties against gram-positive S. aureus and gram-negative E. coli. In particular, compared to the silicone rubber surface alone, an NO releasing film with a base layer of 30 wt% DBHD/N2O2 mixed with poly(lactic acid) exhibits an ~98.4% reduction in biofilm biomass of S. aureus and ~ 99.9% reduction for E. coli at 37 °C. The new diazeniumdiolate-doped PLGA-based NO releasing coatings are expected to be useful antibiofilm coatings for a variety of indwelling biomedical devices (e.g., catheters).
Biofilm; Nitric oxide; Diazeniumdiolate; Poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid)
Tissue engineering-based approaches have the potential to improve stem cell engraftment by increasing cell delivery to the myocardium. Our objective was to develop and characterize a naturally-derived, autologous, biodegradable hydrogel in order to improve acute stem cell retention in the myocardium. HA-blood hydrogels(HA-Bl) were synthesized by mixing in a 1:1(v/v) ratio, lysed whole blood and hyaluronic acid(HA), whose carboxyl groups were functionalized with N-hydroxysuccinimide(NHS) to yield HA succinimidyl succinate(HA-NHS). We performed physical characterization and measured survival/proliferation of cardiosphere-derived cells(CDCs) encapsulated in the hydrogels. Hydrogels were injected intramyocardially or applied epicardially in rats. NHS-activated carboxyl groups in HA react with primary amines present in blood and myocardium to form amide bonds, resulting in a 3D hydrogel bound to tissue. HA-Bl hydrogels had a gelation time of 58±12s, swelling ratio of 10±0.5, compressive and elastic modulus of 14±3 and 1.75±0.6 kPa respectively. These hydrogels were not degraded at 4wks by hydrolysis alone. CDC encapsulation promoted their survival and proliferation. Intra-myocardial injection of CDCs encapsulated in these hydrogels greatly increased acute myocardial retention(p=0.001). Epicardial application of HA-blood hydrogels improved left ventricular ejection fraction following myocardial infarction (P=0.01). HA-blood hydrogels are highly adhesive, biodegradable, promote CDC survival and increase cardiac function following epicardial application after myocardial infarction.
bioadhesive and biodegradable hydrogel; autologous blood hydrogel; modified hyaluronic acid; cardiac stem cell transplantation; molecular imaging; echocardiography
The existing surgical adhesives are not ideal for wet tissue adhesion required in many surgeries such as those for internal organs. Developing surgical adhesives with strong wet tissue adhesion, controlled degradability and mechanical properties, and excellent biocompatibility has been a significant challenge. Herein, learning from nature, we report a one-step synthesis of a family of injectable citrate-based mussel-inspired bioadhesives (iCMBAs) for surgical use. Within the formulations investigated, iCMBAs showed 2.5–8.0 folds stronger wet tissue adhesion strength over the clinically used fibrin glue, demonstrated controlled degradability and tissue-like elastomeric mechanical properties, and exhibited excellent cyto/tissue-compatibility both in vitro and in vivo. iCMBAs were able to stop bleeding instantly and suturelessly, and close wounds (2 cm long × 0.5 cm deep) created on the back of Sprague-Dawley rats, which is impossible when using existing gold standard, fibrin glue, due to its weak wet tissue adhesion strength. Equally important, the new bioadhesives facilitate wound healing, and are completely degraded and absorbed without eliciting significant inflammatory response. Our results support that iCMBA technology is highly translational and could have broad impact on surgeries where surgical tissue adhesives, sealants, and hemostatic agents are used.
Bioadhesives; Hydrogels; Hemostasis; Tissue adhesion; Wound healing
We developed a paclitaxel-conjugated polymeric micelle, ABP-PEG3.5k-Paclitaxel (APP) consisting of poly (ethylene glycol) (PEG) and arginine-grafted poly(cystaminebisacrylamide-diaminohexane) (ABP) for the co-delivery of gene and drug. The APP polymer self-assembled into cationic polymeric micelles with a critical micelle concentration (CMC) value of approximately 0.062 mg/mL, which was determined from measurements of the UV absorption of pyrene. The micelles have an average size of about 3 nm and a zeta potential of about +14 mV. Due to the positive surface charge, APP micelles formed polyplexes with plasmid DNA approximately 200 nm in diameter. The luciferase gene and mouse interleukin-12 (IL-12) gene was used to monitor gene delivery potency. APP polyplexes showed increased gene delivery efficiency and cellular uptake with higher anticancer potency than paclitaxel alone. These results demonstrate that an APP micelle-based delivery system is well suitable for the co-delivery of gene and drug.
Bioreducible polymer; Drug delivery; Gene therapy; Paclitaxel; Polymeric micelle; Interleukin-12
Enhancing human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) differentiation via RNA interference (RNAi) could provide an effective way of controlling cell fate for tissue engineering, but a safe and effective delivery vehicle must first be developed. Here, we evaluated an array of synthetic end-modified poly(beta-amino ester) (PBAE)-based nanoparticles to optimize siRNA delivery into hMSCs. In general, cystamine-terminated polymers caused the most knockdown, with the best polymer achieving 91% knockdown 20 days post-transfection. Binding studies revealed that the cystamine-terminated polymer bound siRNA tightly at lower weight ratios of polymer to siRNA but then efficiently released siRNA upon exposure to a reducing environment, suggesting that this class of PBAEs can form tight initial interactions with its cargo and then cause efficient, environmentally-triggered release in the cytoplasm. Finally, we tested a functional application of this system by transfecting hMSCs with siRNA against an inhibitor of osteogenesis, B-cell lymphoma (Bcl)-like protein 2 (BCL2L2). This resulted in enhanced osteogenesis over 4 weeks as evidenced by Alizarin Red S staining and calcium quantification. The bioreducible PBAE/siRNA nanoparticles developed here can provide a means of safe and effective control of hMSC differentiation for a wide variety of applications.
siRNA delivery; Nanoparticle; Mesenchymal stem cell; Genetic engineering; Bone tissue engineering
Cell migration is controlled by the integration of numerous distinct components. Consequently, the analysis of cell migration is advancing towards comprehensive, multifaceted in vitro models. To accurately evaluate the contribution of an underlying substrate to cell motility in complex cellular environments we developed a migration assay using magnetically attachable stencils (MAts). When attached to a culture surface, MAts create a defined void in the cell monolayer without disrupting the cells or damaging the underlying substrate. Quantitative analysis of migration into this void reveals the substrate's contribution to migration. The magnetically-guided placement of a microfabricated stencil allows for full experimental control of the substrate on which migration is analyzed. MAts enable the evaluation of intact, defined matrix, and make it possible to analyze migration on unique surfaces such as micropatterned proteins, nano-textured surfaces, and pliable hydrogels. These studies also revealed that mechanical disruption, including the damage that occurs during scratch assays, diminishes migration and confounds the analysis of individual cell behavior. Analysis of migration on increasingly complex biomaterials reveals that the contribution of the underlying matrix depends not only on its molecular composition but also its organization and the context in which it is presented.
The long-term performance of tissue-engineered bone grafts is determined by a dynamic balance between bone regeneration and resorption. We proposed using embedded cytokine slow-releasing hydrogels to tune this balance toward a desirable final bone density. In this study we established a systems biology model, and quantitatively explored the combinatorial effects of delivered cytokines from hydrogels on final bone density. We hypothesized that: 1) bone regeneration was driven by transcription factors Runx2 and Osterix, which responded to released cytokines, such as Wnt, BMP2, and TGFβ, drove the development of osteoblast lineage, and contributed to bone mass generation; and 2) the osteoclast lineage, on the other hand, governed the bone resorption, and communications between these two lineages determined the dynamics of bone remodeling. In our model, Intracellular signaling pathways were represented by ordinary differential equations, while the intercellular communications and cellular population dynamics were modeled by stochastic differential equations. Effects of synergistic cytokine combinations were evaluated by Loewe index and Bliss index. Simulation results revealed that the Wnt/BMP2 combinations released from hydrogels showed best control of bone regeneration and synergistic effects, and suggested optimal dose ratios of given cytokine combinations released from hydrogels to most efficiently control the long-term bone remodeling. We revealed the characteristics of cytokine combinations of Wnt/BMP2 which could be used to guide the design of in vivo bone scaffolds and the clinical treatment of some diseases such as osteoporosis.
Bone tissue engineering; Bone remodeling; Cytokine combination therapy; Systems biology; Osteogenic differentiation; Signaling pathway
Fracture healing and fracture fixation in the context of osteoporosis is extremely difficult. To inhibit osteoclast-induced bone resorption and associated implant loosening in this pathology, we describe a local delivery strategy to delivery RNA interfering technology to bone sites to target and down-regulate osteoclast formation and function. Resorbable polymer, poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) microparticles were exploited as a passive phagocyte-targeting carrier to deliver RANK siRNA to both osteoclast precursors and osteoclasts - the professional phagocytes in bone. These natural phagocytes internalize micron-sized particles while most other non-targeted cells in bone cannot. PLGA-siRNA microparticles were dispersed within biomedical grade calcium-based injectable bone cement clinically used in osteoporosis as a bone augmentation biomaterial for fragility fracture prevention and fixation. siRNA released from this formulation in vitro retains bioactivity against the cell target, RANK, in cultured osteoclast precursor cells, inhibiting their progression toward the osteoclastic phenotype. These data support the proof-of-concept to utilize a clinically relevant approach to locally deliver siRNA to phagocytes in bone and improve fragility fracture healing in the context of osteoporosis. This local delivery system delivers siRNA therapeutics directly to osteoporosis sites from clinically familiar injected bone augmentation materials but could be extended to other injectable biomaterials for local siRNA delivery.
siRNA; osteoclasts; bone resorption; PLGA microparticles; calcium phosphate bone cement; osteoporosis; bone augmentation; local delivery