Hydrogels for the production of artificial tissue with enhanced mechanical properties

Preparation of hydrogels with enhanced properties for the production of artificial tissue for organ regeneration and organ functional activity restoration.

Preparation of hydrogels with enhanced properties for the production of artificial tissue for organ regeneration and organ functional activity restoration.

Abstract

A method for preparing hydrogels suitable for producing artificial tissues has been developed. The technique combines fibrin, fibrinogen, and short-chained peptides, which interact to enhance cell adhesion and proliferation. The resulting tissues could be used as a medicine for organ regeneration and could restore the functional activity of a damaged or diseased organ.

DESCRIPTION

Tissue engineering focuses on developing strategies to replace, repair, maintain and/or improve biological tissues. There are three different approaches: the exclusive use of cells; the exclusive use of polymeric matrices; or the combination of both cells and polymeric matrices.

The extracellular matrix plays an essential role since it provides the necessary support for cell proliferation and the maintenance of cell functions. An ideal matrix should be three-dimensional and highly porous; with a surface of appropriate chemical properties to allow cell adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation; and with adequate biomechanical properties for the native tissue intended to replace.

Materials currently used to generate the polymeric matrix are biocompatible, biodegradable, and provide suitable physiological conditions for cell adhesion and proliferation. However, they all have a lack well-organized and controlled internal structure, they are biomechanically weak and rapidly degraded in vivo. In addition, it is hard to balance their mechanical properties and porosity.

In this invention, a new method for preparing a hydrogel suitable for the production of artificial tissues has been developed. It consists of the combination of fibrin and fibrinogen with short-chain peptides, in a way that their interactions lead to a more appropriate internal structure compared to current solutions. While showing high biocompatibility, the resulting material improves the biomechanical properties and the porosity and enhances cell adhesion and the proliferation of the tissue to be regenerated.

ADVANTAGES AND BENEFITS

  • Enhanced biomechanical properties. The use of short-chain peptides improves the mechanical strength of the material and does not depend on agarose concentration, which would worsen the porosity.
  • Adequate porosity, allowing cell growth in the material.
  • Biocompatibility. Thanks to the interactions between fibrin, fibrinogen, and peptides, biocompatibility improves in comparison to current solutions.

Funding