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Macromolecular Biomaterials for Biomedical Technologies and Regenerative Medicine

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Macromolecules".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 May 2023) | Viewed by 7165

Special Issue Editors

School of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 637459, Singapore
Interests: polyelectrolytes; biological macromolecules; nanoparticle complex; drug delivery; polysaccharide; amorphous systems
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Health Science Center Scientific Research, Shenzhen University, Shenzhen, China
Interests: stem cell; biomaterial; tissue engineering; regenerative medicine; bionanotechnology; drug delivery

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The demand for macromolecular biomaterials and health-care related macromolecular materials for various medical applications has been increasing significantly across the globe over the last decade, and has been even more acute these days. This special issue is aimed at providing the recent advances in fundamental research on biological, physical and chemical sciences that underpin the design of biomaterials and its application in regenerative medicine, which include polymer synthesis and characterization, multi-material construct, drug and gene vector design, interaction between stem cell and scaffold, more precise mimic for biochemical and physical microenvironment in native tissues, versatile strategies for tissue and organ regeneration. All these techniques will present pioneering tools and paradigms for medical applications.

The special issue “Macromolecular Biomaterials for Biomedical Technologies and Regenerative Medicine” will provide significant reference and guideline for scholars  who work in inter-disciplinary areas of biomaterials, stem cells, tissue engineering, and regenerative medicine.

This special issue aims at expanding the current knowledge on new macromolecular biomaterials and on its potential medical applications. Research article on experimental studies, as well as review articles are all welcome for consideration.

Dr. Kunn Hadinoto Ong
Dr. Yanxia Zhu
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. There is an Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal. For details about the APC please see here. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • macromolecular biomaterial
  • stem cell
  • biotechnology
  • tissue engineering
  • regenerative medicine
  • biocompatibility
  • three-dimensional culture
  • bionanotechnology
  • drug delivery system

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

26 pages, 5159 KiB  
Article
Open-Spaced Ridged Hydrogel Scaffolds Containing TiO2-Self-Assembled Monolayer of Phosphonates Promote Regeneration and Recovery Following Spinal Cord Injury
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(12), 10250; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms241210250 - 16 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1216
Abstract
The spinal cord has a poor ability to regenerate after an injury, which may be due to cell loss, cyst formation, inflammation, and scarring. A promising approach to treating a spinal cord injury (SCI) is the use of biomaterials. We have developed a [...] Read more.
The spinal cord has a poor ability to regenerate after an injury, which may be due to cell loss, cyst formation, inflammation, and scarring. A promising approach to treating a spinal cord injury (SCI) is the use of biomaterials. We have developed a novel hydrogel scaffold fabricated from oligo(poly(ethylene glycol) fumarate) (OPF) as a 0.08 mm thick sheet containing polymer ridges and a cell-attractive surface on the other side. When the cells are cultured on OPF via chemical patterning, the cells attach, align, and deposit ECM along the direction of the pattern. Animals implanted with the rolled scaffold sheets had greater hindlimb recovery compared to that of the multichannel scaffold control, which is likely due to the greater number of axons growing across it. The immune cell number (microglia or hemopoietic cells: 50–120 cells/mm2 in all conditions), scarring (5–10% in all conditions), and ECM deposits (Laminin or Fibronectin: approximately 10–20% in all conditions) were equal in all conditions. Overall, the results suggest that the scaffold sheets promote axon outgrowth that can be guided across the scaffold, thereby promoting hindlimb recovery. This study provides a hydrogel scaffold construct that can be used in vitro for cell characterization or in vivo for future neuroprosthetics, devices, or cell and ECM delivery. Full article
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11 pages, 1859 KiB  
Article
Microdialysis Reveals Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Sulfated Glycosaminoglycanes in the Early Phase of Bone Healing
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2023, 24(3), 2077; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms24032077 - 20 Jan 2023
Viewed by 1034
Abstract
Although chronic inflammation inhibits bone healing, the healing process is initiated by an inflammatory phase. In a well-tuned sequence of molecular events, pro-inflammatory cytokines are secreted to orchestrate the inflammation response to injury and the recruitment of progenitor cells. These events in turn [...] Read more.
Although chronic inflammation inhibits bone healing, the healing process is initiated by an inflammatory phase. In a well-tuned sequence of molecular events, pro-inflammatory cytokines are secreted to orchestrate the inflammation response to injury and the recruitment of progenitor cells. These events in turn activate the secretion of anti-inflammatory signaling molecules and attract cells and mediators that antagonize the inflammation and initiate the repair phase. Sulfated glycosaminoglycanes (sGAG) are known to interact with cytokines, chemokines and growth factors and, thus, alter the availability, duration and impact of those mediators on the local molecular level. sGAG-coated polycaprolactone-co-lactide (PCL) scaffolds were inserted into critical-size femur defects in adult male Wistar rats. The femur was stabilized with a plate, and the defect was filled with either sGAG-containing PCL scaffolds or autologous bone (positive control). Wound fluid samples obtained by microdialysis were characterized regarding alterations of cytokine concentrations over the first 24 h after surgery. The analyses revealed the inhibition of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and MIP-2 in the sGAG-treated groups compared to the positive control. A simultaneous increase of IL-6 and TNF-α indicated advanced regenerative capacity of sGAG, suggesting their potential to improve bone healing. Full article
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23 pages, 7030 KiB  
Article
Human Vascular Endothelial Cells Promote the Secretion of Vascularization Factors and Migration of Human Skin Fibroblasts under Co-Culture and Its Preliminary Application
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(22), 13995; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms232213995 - 13 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1153
Abstract
The good treatment of skin defects has always been a challenge in the medical field, and the emergence of tissue engineering skin provides a new idea for the treatment of injured skin. However, due to the single seed cells, the tissue engineering skin [...] Read more.
The good treatment of skin defects has always been a challenge in the medical field, and the emergence of tissue engineering skin provides a new idea for the treatment of injured skin. However, due to the single seed cells, the tissue engineering skin has the problem of slow vascularization at the premonitory site after implantation into the human body. Cell co-culture technology can better simulate the survival and communication environment of cells in the human body. The study of multicellular co-culture hopes to bring a solution to the problem of tissue engineering. In this paper, human skin fibroblasts (HSFs) and human vascular endothelial cells (HVECs) were co-cultured in Transwell. The Cell Counting Kit 8 (CCK8), Transwell migration chamber, immunofluorescence, Western blot (WB), and real time quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) were used to study the effects of HVECs on cell activity, migration factor (high mobility group protein 1, HMGB1) and vascularization factor (vascular endothelial growth factor A, VEGFA and fibroblast growth factor 2, FGF2) secretion of HSFs after co-cultured with HVECs in the Transwell. The biological behavior of HSFs co-cultured with HVECs was studied. The experimental results are as follows: (1) The results of cck8 showed that HVECS could promote the activity of HSFs. (2) HVECs could significantly promote the migration of HSFs and promote the secretion of HMGB1. (3) HVECs could promote the secretion of VEGFA and FGF2 of HSFs. (4) The HVECs and HSFs were inoculated on tissue engineering scaffolds at the ratio of 1:4 and were co-cultured and detected for 7 days. The results showed that from the third day, the number of HSFs was significantly higher than that of the control group without HVECs. Full article
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15 pages, 5114 KiB  
Article
Stepwise Proliferation and Chondrogenic Differentiation of Mesenchymal Stem Cells in Collagen Sponges under Different Microenvironments
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(12), 6406; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23126406 - 08 Jun 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1606
Abstract
Biomimetic microenvironments are important for controlling stem cell functions. In this study, different microenvironmental conditions were investigated for the stepwise control of proliferation and chondrogenic differentiation of human bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs). The hMSCs were first cultured in collagen porous sponges and [...] Read more.
Biomimetic microenvironments are important for controlling stem cell functions. In this study, different microenvironmental conditions were investigated for the stepwise control of proliferation and chondrogenic differentiation of human bone-marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs). The hMSCs were first cultured in collagen porous sponges and then embedded with or without collagen hydrogels for continual culture under different culture conditions. The different influences of collagen sponges, collagen hydrogels, and induction factors were investigated. The collagen sponges were beneficial for cell proliferation. The collagen sponges also promoted chondrogenic differentiation during culture in chondrogenic medium, which was superior to the effect of collagen sponges embedded with hydrogels without loading of induction factors. However, collagen sponges embedded with collagen hydrogels and loaded with induction factors had the same level of promotive effect on chondrogenic differentiation as collagen sponges during in vitro culture in chondrogenic medium and showed the highest promotive effect during in vivo subcutaneous implantation. The combination of collagen sponges with collagen hydrogels and induction factors could provide a platform for cell proliferation at an early stage and subsequent chondrogenic differentiation at a late stage. The results provide useful information for the chondrogenic differentiation of stem cells and cartilage tissue engineering. Full article
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12 pages, 5294 KiB  
Article
Photodynamic Activity of Protoporphyrin IX-Immobilized Cellulose Monolith for Nerve Tissue Regeneration
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2022, 23(3), 1035; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms23031035 - 18 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1544
Abstract
The development of nerve conduits with a three-dimensional porous structure has attracted great attention as they closely mimic the major features of the natural extracellular matrix of the nerve tissue. As low levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) function as signaling molecules to [...] Read more.
The development of nerve conduits with a three-dimensional porous structure has attracted great attention as they closely mimic the major features of the natural extracellular matrix of the nerve tissue. As low levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) function as signaling molecules to promote cell proliferation and growth, this study aimed to fabricate protoporphyrin IX (PpIX)-immobilized cellulose (CEPP) monoliths as a means to both guide and stimulate nerve regeneration. CEPP monoliths can be fabricated via a simple thermally induced phase separation method and surface modification. The improved nerve tissue regeneration of CEPP monoliths was achieved by the activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases, such as extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERKs). The resulting CEPP monoliths exhibited interconnected microporous structures and uniform morphology. The results of in vitro bioactivity assays demonstrated that the CEPP monoliths with under 0.54 ± 0.07 μmol/g PpIX exhibited enhanced photodynamic activity on Schwann cells via the generation of low levels of ROS. This photodynamic activation of the CEPP monoliths is a cell-safe process to stimulate cell proliferation without cytotoxic side effects. In addition, the protein expression of phospho-ERK increased considerably after the laser irradiation on the CEPP monoliths with low content of PpIX. Therefore, the CEPP monoliths have a potential application in nerve tissue regeneration as new nerve conduits. Full article
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