Development of bioactive photocrosslinkable fibrous hydrogels.
Three-dimensional (3D) fibrous hydrogels were fabricated by blending two photoactive polymers, poly(ethylene glycol) diacrylate (PEGDA) and poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA), and the resulting solution was electrospun. PEGDA is a commonly used hydrogel material for tissue engineering applications since its interaction with cells can be tuned by crosslinking in a variety of bioactive molecules including peptides and proteins. The PVA in these materials aids in fiber formation and stabilizes the fibrous network when hydrated. The average dry fiber diameter in the hydrogels was 1.02 μm and upon swelling, the fiber diameter increased approximately six-fold. Fibers were stable under cell culture conditions for up to 5 days. The adhesive ligand, RGDS, was readily incorporated into the fibrous network via the conjugation of RGDS to PEG-monoacrylate which was then crosslinked with the fibers. The bioactivity of the fibrous hydrogels was compared with peptide-modified PEGDA-based hydrogels. The two hydrogel materials had similar cell adhesion and viability. Cell morphology on the fibrous hydrogels was dendritic showing a more in vivo like representation, as compared to spread cell morphology on the PEGDA gels. The ability to generate 3D fibrous architectures in hydrogel systems opens up new areas of investigation in cell-material interactions and tissue formation.
Stephens-Altus, JS; Sundelacruz, P; Rowland, ML; West, JL
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