Authors: Wang F, Li Z, Khan M, Tamama K, Kuppusamy P, Wagner WR, Sen CK, Guan J.
Title: Injectable, Rapid Gelling and Highly Flexible Hydrogel Composites as Growth Factor and Cell Carriers.
Summary: A family of injectable, rapid gelling and highly flexible hydrogel composites capable of releasing insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) and delivering mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC) were developed. Hydrogel composites were fabricated from Type I collagen, chondroitin sulfate (CS) and a thermosensitive and degradable hydrogel copolymer based on N-isopropylacrylamide, acrylic acid, N-acryloxysuccinimide and a macromer poly(trimethylene carbonate)-hydroxyethyl methacrylate. The hydrogel copolymer was gellable at body temperature before degradation and soluble at body temperature after degradation. Hydrogel composites exhibited LCSTs around room temperature. They could easily be injected through a 26-gauge needle at 4(o)C, and were capable of gelling within 6 seconds at 37(o)C to form highly flexible gels with moduli matching those of the rat and human myocardium. The hydrogel composites showed good oxygen permeability, the oxygen pressure within the hydrogel composites was similar to that in the air. The effects of collagen and CS contents on LCST, gelation time, injectability, mechanical properties and degradation properties were investigated. IGF-1 was loaded into the hydrogel composites for enhanced cell survival/growth. The released IGF-1 remained bioactive during a 2-week release period. Small fraction of CS in the hydrogel composites significantly decreased IGF-1 release rate. The release kinetics appeared to be controlled mainly by hydrogel composite water content, degradation and interaction with IGF-1. Human MSC adhesion on the hydrogel composites was comparable to that on the tissue culture plate. MSCs were encapsulated in the hydrogel composites and were found to grow inside during a 7-day culture period. IGF-1 loading significantly accelerated MSC growth. RT-PCR analysis demonstrated that MSCs maintained their multipotent differentiation potential in hydrogel composites with and without IGF-1. These injectable and rapid gelling hydrogel composites demonstrated attractive properties for serving as growth factor and cell carriers for cardiovascular tissue engineering applications.
Source: Acta Biomaterialia. [Epub ahead of print]