Hydrogels in Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine II

A special issue of Polymers (ISSN 2073-4360). This special issue belongs to the section "Polymer Applications".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 November 2020) | Viewed by 28986

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Biomimetic Materials and Tissue Engineering Laboratory, Department of Chemical Engineering, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208, USA
Interests: bioinspired gels; gels for stem cell delivery; self-assembled micelles for growth factor immobilization; models gels to control cell microenvironment; composite materials with structure at multiple length scales; skeletal tissue engineering
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Dear Colleagues,

Hydrogels are hydrophilic macromolecular networks that retain a significant fraction of water in their structure in physiological solution without dissolving. Nutrient molecules, oxygen, nucleic acids, peptides, proteins, hormones and other biomolecules diffuse readily through the water-filled volume of hydrogels. Due to their high water content and diffusivity, hydrogels resemble the extracellular matrix (ECM) of living tissues. Human cells encapsulated in hydrogels display viability and function similar to the cells’ natural ECM. This special issue highlights those synthetic or natural hydrogels used as a matrix for the delivery of cells in regenerative medicine. The focus is on cell-hydrogel interaction and how the hydrogel affects viability, lineage, phenotype, function, and fate of the cells. Cells of interest include tissue-specific differentiated cells, stem cells, as well as induced pluripotent cells. Relevant topics include hydrogels with hierarchical structure, multi-functional hydrogels, for minimally-invasive regenerative procedures, immune-modulating hydrogels, for micro-patterning and organ-on-a-chip.

Prof. Dr. Esmaiel Jabbari
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • Hydrogel
  • Hierarchical
  • Multifunctional
  • Synthetic
  • Natural
  • Stem cells
  • Immune-modulating
  • Patterning
  • Cell encapsulation
  • Cell delivery
  • Growth factor delivery
  • Organ-on-a-chip
  • Tissue engineering
  • Regenerative medicine

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Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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16 pages, 2382 KiB  
Article
Modulating Functionalized Poly(ethylene glycol) Diacrylate Hydrogel Mechanical Properties through Competitive Crosslinking Mechanics for Soft Tissue Applications
by Rachel Chapla, Mera Alhaj Abed and Jennifer West
Polymers 2020, 12(12), 3000; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12123000 - 16 Dec 2020
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 4168
Abstract
Local mechanical stiffness influences cell behavior, and thus cell culture scaffolds should approximate the stiffness of the tissue type from which the cells are derived. In synthetic hydrogels, this has been difficult to achieve for very soft tissues such as neural. This work [...] Read more.
Local mechanical stiffness influences cell behavior, and thus cell culture scaffolds should approximate the stiffness of the tissue type from which the cells are derived. In synthetic hydrogels, this has been difficult to achieve for very soft tissues such as neural. This work presents a method for reducing the stiffness of mechanically and biochemically tunable synthetic poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate hydrogels to within the soft tissue stiffness regime by altering the organization of the crosslinking sites. A soluble allyl-presenting monomer, which has a higher propensity for chain termination than acrylate monomers, was introduced into the PEG-diacrylate hydrogel precursor solution before crosslinking, resulting in acrylate-allyl competition and a reduction in gel compressive modulus from 5.1 ± 0.48 kPa to 0.32 ± 0.09 kPa. Both allyl monomer concentration and chemical structure were shown to influence the effectiveness of competition and change in stiffness. Fibroblast cells demonstrated a 37% reduction in average cell spread area on the softest hydrogels produced as compared to cells on control hydrogels, while the average percentage of neural cells extending neurites increased by 41% on these hydrogels, demonstrating the potential for this technology to serve as a soft tissue culture system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrogels in Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine II)
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15 pages, 4772 KiB  
Article
Fabrication of Injectable, Porous Hyaluronic Acid Hydrogel Based on an In-Situ Bubble-Forming Hydrogel Entrapment Process
by Lixuan Wang, Shiyan Dong, Yutong Liu, Yifan Ma, Jingjing Zhang, Zhaogang Yang, Wen Jiang and Yuan Yuan
Polymers 2020, 12(5), 1138; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12051138 - 16 May 2020
Cited by 27 | Viewed by 6882
Abstract
Injectable hydrogels have been widely applied in the field of regenerative medicine. However, current techniques for injectable hydrogels are facing a challenge when trying to generate a biomimetic, porous architecture that is well-acknowledged to facilitate cell behaviors. In this study, an injectable, interconnected, [...] Read more.
Injectable hydrogels have been widely applied in the field of regenerative medicine. However, current techniques for injectable hydrogels are facing a challenge when trying to generate a biomimetic, porous architecture that is well-acknowledged to facilitate cell behaviors. In this study, an injectable, interconnected, porous hyaluronic acid (HA) hydrogel based on an in-situ bubble self-generation and entrapment process was developed. Through an amide reaction between HA and cystamine dihydrochloride activated by EDC/NHS, CO2 bubbles were generated and were subsequently entrapped inside the substrate due to a rapid gelation-induced retention effect. HA hydrogels with different molecular weights and concentrations were prepared and the effects of the hydrogel precursor solution’s concentration and viscosity on the properties of hydrogels were investigated. The results showed that HA10-10 (10 wt.%, MW 100,000 Da) and HA20-2.5 (2.5 wt.%, MW 200,000 Da) exhibited desirable gelation and obvious porous structure. Moreover, HA10-10 represented a high elastic modulus (32 kPa). According to the further in vitro and in vivo studies, all the hydrogels prepared in this study show favorable biocompatibility for desirable cell behaviors and mild host response. Overall, such an in-situ hydrogel with a self-forming bubble and entrapment strategy is believed to provide a robust and versatile platform to engineer injectable hydrogels for a variety of applications in tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, and personalized therapeutics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrogels in Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine II)
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Review

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65 pages, 1801 KiB  
Review
Hydrogels and Dentin–Pulp Complex Regeneration: From the Benchtop to Clinical Translation
by Marwa M. S. Abbass, Aiah A. El-Rashidy, Khadiga M. Sadek, Sara El Moshy, Israa Ahmed Radwan, Dina Rady, Christof E. Dörfer and Karim M. Fawzy El-Sayed
Polymers 2020, 12(12), 2935; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12122935 - 9 Dec 2020
Cited by 56 | Viewed by 17308
Abstract
Dentin–pulp complex is a term which refers to the dental pulp (DP) surrounded by dentin along its peripheries. Dentin and dental pulp are highly specialized tissues, which can be affected by various insults, primarily by dental caries. Regeneration of the dentin–pulp complex is [...] Read more.
Dentin–pulp complex is a term which refers to the dental pulp (DP) surrounded by dentin along its peripheries. Dentin and dental pulp are highly specialized tissues, which can be affected by various insults, primarily by dental caries. Regeneration of the dentin–pulp complex is of paramount importance to regain tooth vitality. The regenerative endodontic procedure (REP) is a relatively current approach, which aims to regenerate the dentin–pulp complex through stimulating the differentiation of resident or transplanted stem/progenitor cells. Hydrogel-based scaffolds are a unique category of three dimensional polymeric networks with high water content. They are hydrophilic, biocompatible, with tunable degradation patterns and mechanical properties, in addition to the ability to be loaded with various bioactive molecules. Furthermore, hydrogels have a considerable degree of flexibility and elasticity, mimicking the cell extracellular matrix (ECM), particularly that of the DP. The current review presents how for dentin–pulp complex regeneration, the application of injectable hydrogels combined with stem/progenitor cells could represent a promising approach. According to the source of the polymeric chain forming the hydrogel, they can be classified into natural, synthetic or hybrid hydrogels, combining natural and synthetic ones. Natural polymers are bioactive, highly biocompatible, and biodegradable by naturally occurring enzymes or via hydrolysis. On the other hand, synthetic polymers offer tunable mechanical properties, thermostability and durability as compared to natural hydrogels. Hybrid hydrogels combine the benefits of synthetic and natural polymers. Hydrogels can be biofunctionalized with cell-binding sequences as arginine–glycine–aspartic acid (RGD), can be used for local delivery of bioactive molecules and cellularized with stem cells for dentin–pulp regeneration. Formulating a hydrogel scaffold material fulfilling the required criteria in regenerative endodontics is still an area of active research, which shows promising potential for replacing conventional endodontic treatments in the near future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrogels in Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine II)
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