Electrospun Biomaterials for Tissue Repair

Within the field of “Regenerative Medicine”, which seeks to replace or repair damaged or diseased cells or tissues or to simulate the body’s own repair mechanisms, there is increasing interest in the use of implantable biomaterials. A biomaterial is any substance that has been engineered to interact with biological systems for a medical purpose. Biomaterials can be derived either from nature (e.g. collagen) or synthesised from a range of raw materials including polymers, ceramics, metals, proteins or composites. One approach is to de-cellularise a donor organ and using the remaining extracellular matrix as a “scaffold”. This has limitations with regard to the availability of donor organs and generation of an immune response, therefore biomedical engineers are developing a range of  synthetic scaffolds. for different therapeutic applications. These can be implanted on their own to promote healing driven by the patient’s own cells, loaded with cells to mimic artificial micro-organs or loaded with growth factors or pharmaceuticals to aid healing.

Endogenous Tissue Repair is a simple therapeutic approach in which a scaffold, without cells, is implanted to promote repair or regeneration by the patient’s own cells. A biomaterial can be implanted, alone or as part of a medical device, to guide cells to heal damaged tissues and to minimise scarring.

Regenerative Medicine Case Studie

6-bone-bigBone Tissue Engineering

Researchers at the University of Malaya conducted a study to test whether a biocomposite electrospun scaffold has the ability to induce differentiation of hMSCs into osteogenic lineage without specific growth factors.

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Human Retinal Pigment Epithelium

This case study evaluated whether the Mimetix scaffold can mimic Bruch’s membrane and assess the attachment, proliferation and differentiation of human retinal pigment epithelium cells (ARPE-19) within it.

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Cornea regeneration using limbal tissue explants

The Electrospinning Company has supplied biodegradable synthetic membranes for affordable corneal surface regeneration techniques in collaboration with the University of Sheffield and experts in India.

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Lung Fibroblast Culture on Bioactive Scaffolds

A novel electrospun scaffold containing Copaiba oil has been developed in collaboration with the University of Campinas in Brazil, UCL and Nottingham Trent University for potential use in applications such as wound care.