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Incorporation of biomimetic matrix molecules in PEG hydrogels enhances matrix deposition and reduces load-induced loss of chondrocyte-secreted matrix



Incorporation of biomimetic matrix molecules in PEG hydrogels enhances matrix deposition and reduces load-induced loss of chondrocyte-secreted matrix



Journal of Biomedical Materials Research. Part a 97(3): 281-291



Poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) hydrogels offer numerous advantages in designing controlled 3D environments for cartilage regeneration, but offer little biorecognition for the cells. Incorporating molecules that more closely mimic the native tissue may provide key signals for matrix synthesis and may also help in the retention of neotissue, particularly when mechanical stimulation is employed. Therefore, this research tested the hypothesis that exogenous hyaluronan encapsulated within PEG hydrogels improves tissue deposition by chondrocytes, while the incorporation of Link-N (DHLSDNYTLDHDRAIH), a fragment of link protein that is involved in stabilizing hyaluronan and aggrecan in cartilage, aids in the retention of the entrapped hyaluronan as well as cell-secreted glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), particularly when dynamic loading is employed. The incorporation of Link-N as covalent tethers resulted in a significant reduction, ~60%, in the loss of entrapped exogenous hyaluronan under dynamic stimulation. When chondrocytes were encapsulated in PEG hydrogels containing exogenous hyaluronan and/or Link-N, the extracellular matrix (ECM) analogs aided in the retention of cell-secreted GAGs under loading. The presence of hyaluronan led to enhanced deposition of collagen type II and aggrecan. In conclusion, our results highlight the importance of ECM analogs, specifically hyaluronan and Link-N, in matrix retention and matrix development and offer new strategies for designing scaffolds for cartilage regeneration.

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Accession: 053797145

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 21442729

DOI: 10.1002/jbm.a.33057


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