Foster, NC, Allen, P, El Haj, AJ, Grover, LM and Moakes, RJA (2021) Tailoring Therapeutic Responses via Engineering Microenvironments with a Novel Synthetic Fluid Gel. Advanced Healthcare Materials, 10 (16). 1 - 12. ISSN 2192-2640

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This study reports the first fully synthetic fluid gel (SyMGels) using a simple poly(ethylene glycol) polymer. Fluid gels are an interesting class of materials: structured during gelation via shear-confinement to form microparticulate suspensions, through a bottom-up approach. Structuring in this way, when compared to first forming a gel and subsequently breaking it down, results in the formation of a particulate dispersion with particles “grown” in the shear flow. Resultantly, systems form a complex microstructure, where gelled particles concentrate remaining non-gelled polymer within the continuous phase, creating an amorphous-like interstitial phase. As such, these materials demonstrate mechanical characteristics typical of colloidal glasses, presenting solid-like behaviors at rest with defined yielding; likely through intrinsic particle-particle and particle-polymer interactions. To date, fluid gels have been fabricated using polysaccharides with relatively complex chemistries, making further modifications challenging. SyMGels are easily functionalised, using simple click-chemistry. This chemical flexibility, allows the creation of microenvironments with discrete biological decoration. Cellular control is demonstrated using MSC (mesenchymal stem cells)/chondrocytes and enables the regulation of key biomarkers such as aggrecan and SOX9. These potential therapeutic platforms demonstrate an important advancement in the biomaterial field, underpinning the mechanisms which drive their mechanical properties, and providing a versatile delivery system for advanced therapeutics.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: ©  The Authors. Advanced Healthcare Materials published byWiley-VCH GmbH. This is an open access article under the terms of theCreative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distributionand reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properlycited.
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
R Medicine > R Medicine (General) > R735 Medical education. Medical schools. Research
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > School of Pharmacy and Bioengineering
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2021 10:33
Last Modified: 15 Oct 2021 10:33

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