Biomaterials, Biodegradables and Biomimetics Research Group

Comunications - Poster

Advanced tissue engineering strategies for biofabrication of complex tissues


Meniscus plays an important role on the knee performance and it has been described as “functionless remnants of leg muscle origin” [1]. The mean incidence of meniscal injury in
the United States is 66/100,000 [2] which implies over 1 million surgical procedures each year [2]. Total/partial meniscectomy has been the gold standard treatment but it contributes
significantly for early arthritic changes in the joint. The need for tools and technologies for meniscal repair or regeneration has been increasing the scientific and clinical interest. In
the last few years, the characteristics and behaviors of different biomaterials were explored and several processing routes attempted to obtain an adequate architecture for proper
cells adhesion, ingrowths, proliferation and differentiation. Tissue engineering (TE) strategies based on combination of advanced biomaterials and stem cells (respecting human
anatomy) can provide a new horizon for partial and/or complete meniscus regeneration, and pain management [6]. Rapid prototyping (RP) technologies, including 3D bioplotting, are
interesting processing technologies to precisely control the architecture of TE scaffolds [8]. Reverse engineering concerns the data acquisition and 3D model preparation which is
followed by RP for processing the scaffold into the desired physical form. This tissue engineering (TE) strategy aims to provide a patient-specific tool for meniscus regeneration.We
hypothesize that this advanced TE strategy that makes use of 3D printing tools and reverse engineering for the designing of anatomical implants will provide a faster and reliable
regeneration of meniscus. The proposed construct will be obtained by bioprinting the biodegradable and bioadhesive silk hydrogel alone or combined with the non-angiogenic
methacrylated gellan gum (iGG-MA) hydrogel. Cell-loaded multilayered constructs will be obtained by bioprinting alternate layers of silk hydrogels and cell-loaded iGG-MA hydrogels
in the W-W region of the implant. Both developed anatomical scaffolds will be physicochemically and biologically characterized in vitro.

Term Stem 2016
3D printing, Patient-specific, Silk Fibroin
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