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Open AccessArticle

Dual-Functioning Scaffolds for the Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury: Alginate Nanofibers Loaded with the Sigma 1 Receptor (S1R) Agonist RC-33 in Chitosan Films

1
Department of Drug Sciences, University of Pavia, Viale Taramelli, 12, 27100 Pavia, Italy
2
Scuola Universitaria IUSS, Istituto Universitario di Studi Superiori, 27100 Pavia, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Mar. Drugs 2020, 18(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/md18010021
Received: 29 November 2019 / Revised: 19 December 2019 / Accepted: 23 December 2019 / Published: 26 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Marine Biopolymers and Drug Delivery)
The present work proposed a novel therapeutic platform with both neuroprotective and neuroregenerative potential to be used in the treatment of spinal cord injury (SCI). A dual-functioning scaffold for the delivery of the neuroprotective S1R agonist, RC-33, to be locally implanted at the site of SCI, was developed. RC-33-loaded fibers, containing alginate (ALG) and a mixture of two different grades of poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO), were prepared by electrospinning. After ionotropic cross-linking, fibers were incorporated in chitosan (CS) films to obtain a drug delivery system more flexible, easier to handle, and characterized by a controlled degradation rate. Dialysis equilibrium studies demonstrated that ALG was able to form an interaction product with the cationic RC-33 and to control RC-33 release in the physiological medium. Fibers loaded with RC-33 at the concentration corresponding to 10% of ALG maximum binding capacity were incorporated in films based on CS at two different molecular weights—low (CSL) and medium (CSM)—solubilized in acetic (AA) or glutamic (GA) acid. CSL- based scaffolds were subjected to a degradation test in order to investigate if the different CSL salification could affect the film behavior when in contact with media that mimic SCI environment. CSL AA exhibited a slower biodegradation and a good compatibility towards human neuroblastoma cell line. View Full-Text
Keywords: spinal cord injury; S1R agonist; chitosan; alginate; RC-33/ALG interaction product; electrospinning; film casting; mechanical properties; biodegradation; human neuroblastoma cells spinal cord injury; S1R agonist; chitosan; alginate; RC-33/ALG interaction product; electrospinning; film casting; mechanical properties; biodegradation; human neuroblastoma cells
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MDPI and ACS Style

Vigani, B.; Rossi, S.; Sandri, G.; Bonferoni, M.C.; Rui, M.; Collina, S.; Fagiani, F.; Lanni, C.; Ferrari, F. Dual-Functioning Scaffolds for the Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury: Alginate Nanofibers Loaded with the Sigma 1 Receptor (S1R) Agonist RC-33 in Chitosan Films. Mar. Drugs 2020, 18, 21.

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