Fabrication of injectable high strength hydrogel based on 4-arm star PEG for cartilage tissue engineering
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AbstractHydrogels prepared from poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) are widely applied in tissue engineering, especially those derived from a combination of functional multi-arm star PEG and linear crosslinker, with an expectation to form a structurally ideal network. However, the poor mechanical strength still renders their further applications. Here we examined the relationship between the dynamics of the pre-gel solution and the mechanical property of the resultant hydrogel in a system consisting of 4-arm star PEG functionalized with vinyl sulfone and short dithiol crosslinker. A method to prepare mechanically strong hydrogel for cartilage tissue engineering is proposed. It is found that when gelation takes place at the overlap concentration, at which a slow relaxation mode just appears in dynamic light scattering (DLS), the resultant hydrogel has a local maximum compressive strength similar to 20 MPa, while still keeps ultralow mass concentration and Young's modulus. Chondrocyte-laden hydrogel constructed under this condition was transplanted into the subcutaneous pocket and an osteochondral defect model in SCID mice. The in vivo results show that chondrocytes can proliferate and maintain their phenotypes in the hydrogel, with the production of abundant extracellular matrix (ECM) components, formation of typical chondrocyte lacunae structure and increase in Young's modulus over 12 weeks, as indicated by histological, immunohistochemistry, gene expression analyses and mechanical test. Moreover, newly formed hyaline cartilage was observed to be integrated with the host articular cartilage tissue in the defects injected with chondrocytes/hydrogel constructs. The results suggest that this hydrogel is a promising candidate scaffold for cartilage tissue engineering. (C) 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
All Author(s) ListJianqi WANG, Fengjie ZHANG, Wing Pui TSANG, Chao WAN, Chi WU
Journal nameBiomaterials
Year2017
Month3
Volume Number120
PublisherELSEVIER SCI LTD
Pages11 - 21
ISSN0142-9612
eISSN1878-5905
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom
KeywordsStar PEG, Overlap concentration, Injectable hydrogel, Chondrocyte, Cartilage tissue engineering, Young's modulus
Web of Science Subject CategoriesEngineering, Biomedical;Materials Science, Biomaterials;Engineering;Materials Science

Last updated on 2021-12-09 at 23:51