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Fabrication of gelatin methacrylate/nanohydroxyapatite microgel arrays for periodontal tissue regeneration

Authors Chen X, Bai S, Li B, Liu H, Wu G, Liu S, Zhao Y

Received 29 April 2016

Accepted for publication 10 June 2016

Published 14 September 2016 Volume 2016:11 Pages 4707—4718

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S111701

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Lei Yang


Xi Chen,1 Shizhu Bai,1 Bei Li,2 Huan Liu,1 Guofeng Wu,1 Sha Liu,3 Yimin Zhao1

1State Key Laboratory of Military Stomatology and National Clinical Research Center for Oral Diseases, Shaanxi Key Laboratory of Oral Diseases, Department of Prosthodontics, 2State Key Laboratory of Military Stomatology and National Clinical Research Center for Oral Diseases, Shaanxi Key Laboratory of Oral Diseases, Center for Tissue Engineering, School of Stomatology, 3Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Xijing Hospital, The Fourth Military Medical University, Shaanxi, People’s Republic of China

Introduction: Periodontitis is a chronic infectious disease and is the major cause of tooth loss and other oral health issues around the world. Periodontal tissue regeneration has therefore always been the ultimate goal of dentists and researchers. Existing fabrication methods mainly focused on a top–down tissue engineering strategy in which several drawbacks remain, including low throughput and limited diffusion properties resulting from a large sample size. Gelatin methacrylate (GelMA) is a kind of photocrosslinkable and biocompatible hydrogel, with the capacities of enabling cell encapsulation and regeneration of functional tissues. Here, we developed a novel method to fabricate GelMA/nanohydroxylapatite (nHA) microgel arrays using a photocrosslinkable strategy. The viability, proliferation, and osteogenic differentiation and in vivo osteogenesis of human periodontal ligament stem cells (hPDLSCs) encapsulated in microgels were evaluated. The results suggested that such microgels provide great potential for periodontal tissue repair and regeneration.
Methods: Microgel arrays were fabricated by blending different weight ratios of GelMA and nHA. hPDLSCs were encapsulated in GelMA/nHA microgels of various ratios for a systematic evaluation of cell viability, proliferation, and osteogenic differentiation. In vivo osteogenesis in nude mice was also studied.
Results: The GelMA/nHA microgels exhibited appropriate microarchitecture, mechanical strength, and surface roughness, thus enabling cell adhesion and proliferation. Additionally, the GelMA/nHA microgels (10%/2% w/v) enhanced the osteogenic differentiation of hPDLSCs by elevating the expression levels of osteogenic biomarker genes, such as ALP, BSP, OCN, and RUNX2. In vivo ectopic transplantation results showed that GelMA/nHA microgels (10%/2% w/v) increased mineralized tissue formation with abundant vascularization, compared with the 1%, 3%, and the pure GelMA group.
Conclusion: The GelMA/nHA microgels (10%/2% w/v) facilitated hPDLSCs viability, proliferation, and osteogenic differentiation in vitro and further promoted new bone formation in vivo, suggesting that the GelMA/nHA microgels (10%/2% w/v) provide great potential for periodontal tissue regeneration.

Keywords: periodontal ligament stem cells, gelatin methacrylate, nanohydroxyapatite, microgel array, differentiation, periodontal tissue regeneration

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