In the growing market of regenerative medicine, the graft of stem cells is a promising strategy but limited survival of cells post implantation reduces its efficacy. The main role of stem cells in tissue regeneration is to release paracrine factors and therefore stimulate the creation of new vessels, cells recruitment and tissue remodeling. Though to have a significant efficacy, stem cells have to stay alive long enough post-implantation in an ischemic environment.
The research team has demonstrated that mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can withstand exposure to severe, continuous hypoxia provided that they have access to glucose ,2. Therefore, they designed a biocompatible material which provides a release of glucose, with good mechanical properties making it easy to handle and injectable. The hydrogel is based on a co-polymer of fibrin and starch containing enzymes capable of producing glucose by consuming starch and therefore, inducing an enhancement of stem cell survival. The enzymes can be encapsulated or not in nanoparticles playing a role of reservoir.
The hydrogel presents interesting mechanical properties, better in vitro and in vivo stem cells survival (tested on three different cell lines), and in vivo cellular colonization. The hydrogel can be conditioned in a doublechamber syringe (injectable form) and has been tested under sterile and different storage conditions.
This technology is providing an environment suitable for stem cell survival even under hypoxic conditions.
Competitive advantages :
Biomaterial, Hydrogel, Stem cells, Regenerative medicine, Tissue engineering, Bone reconstruction