Electrospun Nanofibers for Biomedical Applications

A special issue of Nanomaterials (ISSN 2079-4991).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 February 2019) | Viewed by 94367

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Special Issue Editors

University of Minho, I3B's - Research Institute on Biomaterials, Biodegradables and Biomimetics, Guimarães, Portugal
Interests: surface biofunctionalization; drug delivery systems; fibrous scaffolds; mesenchymal stem cells
University of Minho, I3B's - Research Institute on Biomaterials, Biodegradables and Biomimetics, Guimarães, Portugal
Interests: natural origin materials; marine-derived materials; biomaterials processing; porous scaffolds; tissue engineering; regenerative medicine; stem cells; biomimetics; biodegradables; drug delivery; nanotechnology; polymer chemistry; bioceramics; microfluidics; 3D in-vitro cancer models; biodegradable urological stents
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
University of Minho, I3B's - Research Institute on Biomaterials, Biodegradables and Biomimetics, Guimarães, Portugal
Interests: biodegradable biomaterials; polymer science; porous biomaterials; natural origin biomaterials; surface biofunctionalization of biomaterials; nanostructured biomaterials and composites; bone and cartilage tissue engineering; adult stem cells; advanced therapies; regenerative medicine; animal models for testing of biomaterials
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nanomaterial-based solutions are amongst the most promising therapies to face the increasing incidences of cancer, cardiovascular, respiratory, musculoskeletal and neurodegenerative diseases, associated with the aging of the world population. Nanofibers have already been proposed as devices for a wide range of applications. In particular, the unique properties of electrospun nanofibers have supported the development of highly effective therapeutic solutions to many unmet clinical needs.

This Special Issue aims at assembling a set of highly-innovative contributions on the most advanced solutions and therapies based on or involving electrospun meshes, as well as radical new strategies to extend its applicability. Of particular interest are papers tackling the following research topics:

- scaffolds structure and functionalization for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine;

- delivery systems for drugs/proteins/genes;

- bioactive wound dressings;

- membranes for different medical applications including filtration and dialysis;

- imaging and biosensing for disease diagnostics and/or prognosis.

Dr. Albino Martins
Prof. Dr. Rui L. Reis
Prof. Dr. Nuno M. Neves
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Electrospinning
  • Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
  • Drug Delivery Systems
  • Wound dressing
  • Filtration and dialysis
  • Imaging
  • Biosensing

Published Papers (17 papers)

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13 pages, 2633 KiB  
Article
Effect of Electrospun Fiber Mat Thickness and Support Method on Cell Morphology
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 644; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040644 - 20 Apr 2019
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 4305
Abstract
Electrospun fiber mats (EFMs) are highly versatile biomaterials used in a myriad of biomedical applications. Whereas some facets of EFMs are well studied and can be highly tuned (e.g., pore size, fiber diameter, etc.), other features are under characterized. For example, although substrate [...] Read more.
Electrospun fiber mats (EFMs) are highly versatile biomaterials used in a myriad of biomedical applications. Whereas some facets of EFMs are well studied and can be highly tuned (e.g., pore size, fiber diameter, etc.), other features are under characterized. For example, although substrate mechanics have been explored by several groups, most studies rely on Young’s modulus alone as a characterization variable. The influence of fiber mat thickness and the effect of supports are variables that are often not considered when evaluating cell-mechanical response. To assay the role of these features in EFM scaffold design and to improve understanding of scaffold mechanical properties, we designed EFM scaffolds with varying thickness (50–200 µm) and supporting methodologies. EFM scaffolds were comprised of polycaprolactone and were either electrospun directly onto a support, suspended across an annulus (3 or 10 mm inner diameter), or “tension-released” and then suspended across an annulus. Then, single cell spreading (i.e., Feret diameter) was measured in the presence of these different features. Cells were sensitive to EFM thickness and suspended gap diameter. Overall, cell spreading was greatest for 50 µm thick EFMs suspended over a 3 mm gap, which was the smallest thickness and gap investigated. These results are counterintuitive to conventional understanding in mechanobiology, which suggests that stiffer materials, such as thicker, supported EFMs, should elicit greater cell polarization. Additional experiments with 50 µm thick EFMs on polystyrene and polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) supports demonstrated that cells can “feel” the support underlying the EFM if it is rigid, similar to previous results in hydrogels. These results also suggest that EFM curvature may play a role in cell response, separate from Young’s modulus, possibly because of internal tension generated. These parameters are not often considered in EFM design and could improve scaffold performance and ultimately patient outcomes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrospun Nanofibers for Biomedical Applications)
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12 pages, 2546 KiB  
Article
In Vitro and In Vivo Studies of Hydrophilic Electrospun PLA95/β-TCP Membranes for Guided Tissue Regeneration (GTR) Applications
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 599; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040599 - 11 Apr 2019
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 3258
Abstract
The guided tissue regeneration (GTR) membrane is a barrier intended to maintain a space for alveolar bone and periodontal ligament tissue regeneration but prevent the migration of fast-growing soft tissue into the defect sites. This study evaluated the physical properties, in vivo animal [...] Read more.
The guided tissue regeneration (GTR) membrane is a barrier intended to maintain a space for alveolar bone and periodontal ligament tissue regeneration but prevent the migration of fast-growing soft tissue into the defect sites. This study evaluated the physical properties, in vivo animal study, and clinical efficacy of hydrophilic PLA95/β-TCP GTR membranes prepared by electrospinning (ES). The morphology and cytotoxicity of ES PLA95/β-TCP membranes were evaluated by SEM and 3-(4,5-cimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide (MTT) respectively. The cementum and bone height were measured by an animal study at 8 and 16 weeks after surgery. Fifteen periodontal patients were selected for the clinical trial by using a commercial product and the ES PLA95/β-TCP membrane. Radiographs and various indexes were measured six months before and after surgery. The average fiber diameter for this ES PLA95/β-TCP membrane was 2.37 ± 0.86 µm. The MTT result for the ES PLA95/β-TCP membrane showed negative for cytotoxicity. The significant differences in the cementum and bone height were observed between empty control and the ES PLA95/β-TCP membrane in the animal model (p < 0.05). Clinical trial results showed clinical attachment level (CAL) of both control and ES PLA95/β-TCP groups, with a significant difference from the pre-surgery results after six months. This study demonstrated that the ES PLA95/β-TCP membrane can be used as an alternative GTR membrane for clinical applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrospun Nanofibers for Biomedical Applications)
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12 pages, 3901 KiB  
Article
A Microfluidic Chip Embracing a Nanofiber Scaffold for 3D Cell Culture and Real-Time Monitoring
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 588; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040588 - 10 Apr 2019
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 4458
Abstract
Recently, three-dimensional (3D) cell culture and tissue-on-a-chip application have attracted attention because of increasing demand from the industries and their potential to replace conventional two-dimensional culture and animal tests. As a result, numerous studies on 3D in-vitro cell culture and microfluidic chip have [...] Read more.
Recently, three-dimensional (3D) cell culture and tissue-on-a-chip application have attracted attention because of increasing demand from the industries and their potential to replace conventional two-dimensional culture and animal tests. As a result, numerous studies on 3D in-vitro cell culture and microfluidic chip have been conducted. In this study, a microfluidic chip embracing a nanofiber scaffold is presented. A electrospun nanofiber scaffold can provide 3D cell culture conditions to a microfluidic chip environment, and its perfusion method in the chip can allow real-time monitoring of cell status based on the conditioned culture medium. To justify the applicability of the developed chip to 3D cell culture and real-time monitoring, HepG2 cells were cultured in the chip for 14 days. Results demonstrated that the cells were successfully cultured with 3D culture-specific-morphology in the chip, and their albumin and alpha-fetoprotein production was monitored in real-time for 14 days. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrospun Nanofibers for Biomedical Applications)
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16 pages, 4606 KiB  
Article
Biofunctional Nanofibrous Substrate for Local TNF-Capturing as a Strategy to Control Inflammation in Arthritic Joints
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 567; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040567 - 08 Apr 2019
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 3287
Abstract
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease that affects the synovial cavity of joints, and its pathogenesis is associated with an increased expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, namely tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α). It has been clinically shown to have an adequate response to systemic [...] Read more.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease that affects the synovial cavity of joints, and its pathogenesis is associated with an increased expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, namely tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α). It has been clinically shown to have an adequate response to systemic administration of TNF-α inhibitors, although with many shortcomings. To overcome such limitations, the immobilization of a TNF-α antibody on a nanofibrous substrate to promote a localized action is herein proposed. By using this approach, the antibody has its maximum therapeutic efficacy and a prolonged therapeutic benefit, avoiding the systemic side-effects associated with conventional biological agents’ therapies. To technically achieve such a purpose, the surface of electrospun nanofibers is initially activated and functionalized, allowing TNF-α antibody immobilization at a maximum concentration of 6 µg/mL. Experimental results evidence that the biofunctionalized nanofibrous substrate is effective in achieving a sustained capture of soluble TNF-α over time. Moreover, cell biology assays demonstrate that this system has no deleterious effect over human articular chondrocytes metabolism and activity. Therefore, the developed TNF-capturing system may represent a potential therapeutic approach for the local management of severely affected joints. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrospun Nanofibers for Biomedical Applications)
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13 pages, 18799 KiB  
Article
Electrospun Gelatin Fibers Surface Loaded ZnO Particles as a Potential Biodegradable Antibacterial Wound Dressing
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(4), 525; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9040525 - 03 Apr 2019
Cited by 33 | Viewed by 3703
Abstract
Traditional wound dressings require frequent replacement, are prone to bacterial growth and cause a lot of environmental pollution. Therefore, biodegradable and antibacterial dressings are eagerly desired. In this paper, gelatin/ZnO fibers were first prepared by side-by-side electrospinning for potential wound dressing materials. The [...] Read more.
Traditional wound dressings require frequent replacement, are prone to bacterial growth and cause a lot of environmental pollution. Therefore, biodegradable and antibacterial dressings are eagerly desired. In this paper, gelatin/ZnO fibers were first prepared by side-by-side electrospinning for potential wound dressing materials. The morphology, composition, cytotoxicity and antibacterial activity were characterized by using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), X-ray diffractometry (XRD), particle size analyzer (DLS), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), thermogravimetry (TGA) and Incucyte™ Zoom system. The results show that ZnO particles are uniformly dispersed on the surface of gelatin fibers and have no cytotoxicity. In addition, the gelatin/ZnO fibers exhibit excellent antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) and Escherichia coli (E. coli) with a significant reduction of bacteria to more than 90%. Therefore, such a biodegradable, nontoxic and antibacterial fiber has excellent application prospects in wound dressing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrospun Nanofibers for Biomedical Applications)
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20 pages, 15676 KiB  
Article
Physical Properties and In Vitro Biocompatible Evaluation of Silicone-Modified Polyurethane Nanofibers and Films
Nanomaterials 2019, 9(3), 367; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano9030367 - 05 Mar 2019
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2897
Abstract
In this study, the physical properties and the biocompatibility of electrospun silicone-modified polyurethane (PUSX) nanofibers were discussed and compared with PUSX films. To investigate the effects of different structures on the physical properties, tensile strength, elongation at break, Young’s modulus, water retention, water [...] Read more.
In this study, the physical properties and the biocompatibility of electrospun silicone-modified polyurethane (PUSX) nanofibers were discussed and compared with PUSX films. To investigate the effects of different structures on the physical properties, tensile strength, elongation at break, Young’s modulus, water retention, water contact angle (WCA) and thermal conductivity measurements were performed. To prove the in vitro biocompatibility of the materials, cell adhesion, cell proliferation, and cytotoxicity were studied by NIH3T3 mouse embryonic fibroblasts cells following by lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) analysis. As a conclusion, the mechanical properties, water retention, and WCA were proven to be able to be controlled and improved by adjusting the structure of PUSX. A higher hydrophobicity and lower thermal conductivity were found in PUSX nanofibers compared with polyurethane (PU) nanofibers and films. An in vitro biocompatibility evaluation shows that the cell proliferation can be performed on both PUSX nanofibers and films. However, within a short period, cells prefer to attach and entangle on PUSX nanofibers rather than PUSX films. PUSX nanofibers were proven to be a nontoxic alternative for PU nano-membranes or films in the biomedical field, because of the controllable physical properties and the biocompatibility. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electrospun Nanofibers for Biomedical Applications)
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16 pages, 5982 KiB