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Acrylamide-based hydrogels with distinct osteogenic and chondrogenic differentiation potential.

Acrylamide-based hydrogels with distinct osteogenic and chondrogenic differentiation potential. Thumbnail


Regeneration solutions for the osteochondral interface depth are limited, where multi-material implants have the potential to delaminate affecting the regeneration process and impacting the final integrity of tissue interface. Here we explore regionally mixed hydrogel networks, presenting distinct chemical features to determine their compatibility in supporting osteogenic or chondrogenic cell behaviour and differentiation. Poly(N-isopropylacrylamide) (pNIPAM) and poly(N-tert-butylacrylamide) (pNTBAM) hydrogels were assessed in terms of their chemical differences, mechanical strength, internal architecture, porosity and capacity to support cell viability, migration, and differentiation. pNTBAM polymerized with a Young's modulus of up to 371?±?31 kPa compared to the more flexible pNIPAM, 16.5?±?0.6 kPa. Viability testing revealed biocompatibility of both hydrogels with significantly increased cell numbers observed in pNTBAM (500?±?95 viable cells/mm2) than in pNIPAM (60?±?3 viable cells/mm2) (P?=?0.05). Mineralization determined through alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity, calcium ion and annexin A2 markers of mineralization) and osteogenic behaviour (collagen I expression) were supported in both hydrogels, but to a greater extent in pNTBAM. pNTBAM supported significantly elevated levels of chondrogenic markers as evidenced by collagen II and glycosaminoglycan expression in comparison to little or no evidence in pNIPAM (P?=?0.05). In conclusion, structurally similar, chemically distinct, acrylamide hydrogels display variable capacities in supporting osteochondral cell behaviours. These systems demonstrate spatial control of cell interaction through simple changes in monomer chemistry. Fine control over chemical presentation during the fabrication of biomaterial implants could lead to greater efficacy and targeted regeneration of semi-complex tissues.

Acceptance Date Jun 28, 2022
Publication Date Jul 16, 2022
Journal Progress in Biomaterials
Publisher Springer Verlag
Pages 297-309
Keywords Hydrogel; Osteochondral; Osteogenic; Chondrogenic; Mineralization
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