Kartogenin-loaded coaxial PGS/PCL aligned nanofibers for cartilage tissue engineering

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Silva, J.C.
Udangawa, R.N.
Chen, J.
Mancinelli, C.D.
Garrudo, F.F.F.
Mikael, P.E.
Cabral, J.M.S.
Ferreira, F.C.
Linhardt, Robert J.
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Biology , Chemistry and chemical biology , Chemical and biological engineering , Biomedical engineering
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Electrospinning is a valuable technology for cartilage tissue engineering (CTE) due to its ability to produce fibrous scaffolds mimicking the nanoscale and alignment of collagen fibers present within the superficial zone of articular cartilage. Coaxial electrospinning allows the fabrication of core-shell fibers able to incorporate and release bioactive molecules (e.g., drugs or growth factors) in a controlled manner. Herein, we used coaxial electrospinning to produce coaxial poly(glycerol sebacate) (PGS)/poly(caprolactone) (PCL) aligned nanofibers (core:PGS/shell:PCL). The obtained scaffolds were characterized in terms of their structure, chemical composition, thermal properties, mechanical performance and in vitro degradation kinetics, in comparison to monoaxial PCL aligned fibers and respective non-aligned controls. All the electrospun scaffolds produced presented average fiber diameters within the nanometer-scale and the core-shell structure of the composite fibers was clearly confirmed by TEM. Additionally, fiber alignment significantly increased (>2-fold) the elastic modulus of both coaxial and monoxial scaffolds. Kartogenin (KGN), a small molecule known to promote mesenchymal stem/stromal cells (MSC) chondrogenesis, was loaded into the core PGS solution to generate coaxial PGS-KGN/PCL nanofibers. The KGN release kinetics and scaffold biological performance were evaluated in comparison to KGN-loaded monoaxial fibers and respective non-loaded controls. Coaxial PGS-KGN/PCL nanofibers showed a more controlled and sustained KGN release over 21 days than monoaxial PCL-KGN nanofibers. When cultured with human bone marrow MSC in incomplete chondrogenic medium (without TGF-β3), KGN-loaded scaffolds enhanced significantly cell proliferation and chondrogenic differentiation, as suggested by the increased sGAG amounts and chondrogenic markers gene expression levels. Overall, these findings highlight the potential of using coaxial PGS-KGN/PCL aligned nanofibers as a bioactive scaffold for CTE applications.
Materials Science & Engineering C, 107, 110291
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Kartogenin-loaded coaxial PGS/PCL aligned nanofibers for cartilage tissue engineering, J. C. Silva, R. N. Udangawa, J. Chen, C. D. Mancinelli, F. F. F. Garrudo, P. E. Mikael, J. M. S. Cabral, F. C. Ferreira, R. J. Linhardt, Materials Science & Engineering C, 107, 110291, 2020.
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