Synthetic biomimetic hydrogels incorporated with ephrin-A1 for therapeutic angiogenesis.
Eph receptors and ephrin ligands are essential for vascular development and angiogenic remodeling. In this work, we developed biomimetic poly(ethylene glycol)-diacrylate hydrogels incorporated with ephrin-A1 and examined their angiogenic properties. Ephrin-A1 was covalently immobilized on the surface of hydrogels by chemical modification and photopolymerization. Ephrin-A1 immobilized on hydrogels was found to retain its capacity to stimulate endothelial cell adhesion in a dose-dependent manner as similar findings were observed on polystyrene culture wells pre-adsorbed with ephrin-A1. Cell adhesion stimulated by ephrin-A1 was abolished by treatment with soluble RGDS and anti-alpha(v)beta3 integrin but not anti-alpha(v)beta5 integrin antibodies, suggesting that ephrin-A1 activates cell adhesion through alpha(v)beta3 integrins. Also, surface immobilized ephrin-A1 was found to induce endothelial tubule formation with luminal diameters ranging 5-30 microm on hydrogels. The results of these studies demonstrate that pro-angiogenic properties of ephrin-A1 are preserved in hydrogels and suggest potential applications of this hydrogel system in regenerative medicine and tissue engineering.
Moon, JJ; Lee, S-H; West, JL
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