Protease-degradable microgels for protein delivery for vascularization

Foster, G. A., Headen, D. M., González-García, C., Salmerón-Sánchez, M. , Shirwan, H. and García, A. J. (2017) Protease-degradable microgels for protein delivery for vascularization. Biomaterials, 113, pp. 170-175. (doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2016.10.044) (PMID:27816000)

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Degradable hydrogels to deliver bioactive proteins represent an emerging platform for promoting tissue repair and vascularization in various applications. However, implanting these biomaterials requires invasive surgery, which is associated with complications such as inflammation, scarring, and infection. To address these shortcomings, we applied microfluidics-based polymerization to engineer injectable poly(ethylene glycol) microgels of defined size and crosslinked with a protease degradable peptide to allow for triggered release of proteins. The release rate of proteins covalently tethered within the microgel network was tuned by modifying the ratio of degradable to non-degradable crosslinkers, and the released proteins retained full bioactivity. Microgels injected into the dorsum of mice were maintained in the subcutaneous space and degraded within 2 weeks in response to local proteases. Furthermore, controlled release of VEGF from degradable microgels promoted increased vascularization compared to empty microgels or bolus injection of VEGF. Collectively, this study motivates the use of microgels as a viable method for controlled protein delivery in regenerative medicine applications.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Salmeron-Sanchez, Professor Manuel and Gonzalez Garcia, Dr Cristina
Authors: Foster, G. A., Headen, D. M., González-García, C., Salmerón-Sánchez, M., Shirwan, H., and García, A. J.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Biomedical Engineering
Journal Name:Biomaterials
Published Online:28 October 2016
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd.
First Published:First published in Biomaterials 113: 170-175
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
626901HEALINSYNERGY - Material-driven fibronectin fibrillogenesis to engineer synergistic growth factor microenvironmentsManuel Salmeron-SanchezEuropean Research Council (ERC)306990ENG - BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING