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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18(9), 1829; doi:10.3390/ijms18091829

Fabrication of Innovative Silk/Alginate Microcarriers for Mesenchymal Stem Cell Delivery and Tissue Regeneration

Department of Drug Sciences, University of Pavia, Viale Taramelli 12, 27100 Pavia, Italy
Department of Biomedical and Neuromotor Sciences (DIBINEM), University of Bologna, Via Zamboni 33, 40126 Bologna, Italy
Osteoarticular Regeneration Laboratory, 3rd Orthopaedic and Traumatologic Clinic, Rizzoli Orthopaedic Institute, Via Giulio Cesare Pupilli 1, 40136 Bologna, Italy
IRCCS Istituto Ortopedico Galeazzi, Via R. Galeazzi 4, 20161 Milan, Italy
Silk Division, Innovhub, Stazioni Sperimentali per l’Industria, Via G. Colombo 83, 20133 Milan, Italy
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 July 2017 / Revised: 9 August 2017 / Accepted: 15 August 2017 / Published: 23 August 2017
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The aim of this study was to exploit silk fibroin’s properties to develop innovative composite microcarriers for mesenchymal stem cell (MSCs) adhesion and proliferation. Alginate microcarriers were prepared, added to silk fibroin solution, and then treated with ethanol to induce silk conformational transition. Microcarriers were characterized for size distribution, coating stability and homogeneity. Finally, in vitro cytocompatibility and suitability as delivery systems for MSCs were investigated. Results indicated that our manufacturing process is consistent and reproducible: silk/alginate microcarriers were stable, with spherical geometry, about 400 μm in average diameter, and fibroin homogeneously coated the surface. MSCs were able to adhere rapidly onto the microcarrier surface and to cover the surface of the microcarrier within three days of culture; moreover, on this innovative 3D culture system, stem cells preserved their metabolic activity and their multi-lineage differentiation potential. In conclusion, silk/alginate microcarriers represent a suitable support for MSCs culture and expansion. Since it is able to preserve MSCs multipotency, the developed 3D system can be intended for cell delivery, for advanced therapy and regenerative medicine applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: microcarriers; alginate; silk fibroin; mesenchymal stem cells; regenerative medicine; musculoskeletal tissues microcarriers; alginate; silk fibroin; mesenchymal stem cells; regenerative medicine; musculoskeletal tissues

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Perteghella, S.; Martella, E.; de Girolamo, L.; Perucca Orfei, C.; Pierini, M.; Fumagalli, V.; Pintacuda, D.V.; Chlapanidas, T.; Viganò, M.; Faragò, S.; Torre, M.L.; Lucarelli, E. Fabrication of Innovative Silk/Alginate Microcarriers for Mesenchymal Stem Cell Delivery and Tissue Regeneration. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2017, 18, 1829.

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