Epitope‐Imprinted Nanoparticles as Transforming Growth Factor‐β3 Sequestering Ligands to Modulate Stem Cell Fate

last updated: 2020-10-20
ProjectSmarTendon :: publications list
TitleEpitope‐Imprinted Nanoparticles as Transforming Growth Factor‐β3 Sequestering Ligands to Modulate Stem Cell Fate
Publication TypePapers in Scientific Journals
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsTeixeira S. P. B., Domingues R. M. A., Babo P. S., Berdecka D., Miranda M. S., Gomes M. E., Peppas N. A., and Reis R. L.

Growth factors (GFs) are biomolecules with potent biological effects but inherent limitations hinder their potential as therapeutic agents and cell culture supplements in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine (TERM). Biomaterials that sequester endogenous GFs by affinity binding might circumvent such limitations and thus are being increasingly investigated. Here, molecularly imprinted nanoparticles (MINPs) are proposed as specific abiotic ligands for GFs. As a proof of concept, a conformational epitope of transforming growth factor‐β3 (TGF‐β3) is designed and surface imprinted onto polyacrylamide‐based nanoparticles by inverse microemulsion polymerization. It is found that, depending on the polymerization mixture composition, MINPs can recognize and preferentially bind TGF‐β3, either in noncompetitive assays or from a complex human fluid (platelet lysate). Substrates functionalized with MINPs are then used for 2D culture of adipose‐derived stem cells. Remarkably, gene and protein expression profiles show a marked upregulation of SOX‐9, suggesting activation of TGF‐β3 signaling pathways without requiring supplementation with exogenous GF. Likewise, culturing these cells in pellets incorporating MINPs previously incubated with platelet lysate results in higher collagen II‐rich matrix deposition, compared to pellets incorporating non‐imprinted nanoparticles. In summary, results suggest MINPs can be used as cost‐effective, stable, and scalable alternative abiotic GF ligands to guide cell fate in TERM applications.

JournalAdvanced Functional Materials
Date Published2020-10-20
Keywordsepitopes, Molecular imprinting, Molecular recognition, protein corona, Transforming growth factor-β3 (TGF-β3)
Peer reviewedyes

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