Functional Nanofibrous Scaffolds Combined with Stem Cells for Advanced Biomedical Devices and Therapies

last updated: 2019-12-18
ProjectSPARTAN :: publications list
TitleFunctional Nanofibrous Scaffolds Combined with Stem Cells for Advanced Biomedical Devices and Therapies
Publication TypeInvited Lecture
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsNeves N. M.

Among the various possible embodiements of Advanced Therapies and in particular of Tissue Engineering the use of temporary scaffolds to regenerate tissue defects is one of the key issues. The scaffolds should be specifically designed to create environments that promote tissue development and not merely to support the maintenance of communities of cells. To achieve that goal, highly functional scaffolds may combine specific morphologies and surface chemistry with the local release of bioactive agents. 

Many biomaterials have been proposed to produce scaffolds aiming the regeneration of a wealth of human tissues. We have a particular interest in developing systems based in nanofibrous biodegradable polymers1,2. Those demanding applications require a combination of mechanical properties, processability, cell-friendly surfaces and tunable biodegradability that need to be tailored for the specific application envisioned. Those biomaterials are usually processed by different routes into devices with wide range of morphologies such as biodegradable fibers and meshes, films or particles and adaptable to different biomedical applications.

In our approach, we combine the temporary scaffolds populated with therapeutically relevant communities of cells to generate a hybrid implant. For that we have explored different sources of adult and also embryonic stem cells. We are exploring the use of adult MSCs3, namely obtained from the bone marrow for the development autologous-based therapies. We also develop strategies based in extra-embryonic tissues, such as amniotic fluid (AF) and the perivascular region of the umbilical cord4 (Wharton´s Jelly, WJ). Those tissues offer many advantages over both embryonic and other adult stem cell sources.

The comparatively large volume of tissue and ease of physical manipulation facilitates the isolation of larger numbers of stem cells.  The fetal stem cells appear to have more pronounced immunomodulatory properties than adult MSCs. This allogeneic escape mechanism may be of therapeutic value, because the transplantation of readily available allogeneic human MSCs would be preferable as opposed to the required expansion stage (involving both time and logistic effort) of autologous cells.


Topics to be covered

This talk will review our latest developments of nanostructured-based biomaterials and scaffolds in combination with stem cells for bone and cartilage tissue engineering.

EventXII Spanish-Portuguese Conference on Controlled Drug Delivery - Tailoring drug delivery systems to the patients needs
Event Date2018-01-15
Event LocationCoimbra, Portugal
KeywordsBiomateriais, scaffolds
Peer reviewedno

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