Hydrogel particles that can be engineered to compartmentally culture cells in a three-dimensional (3D) and high-throughput manner have attracted increasing interest in the biomedical area. However, the ability to generate hydrogel particles with specially designed structures and their potential biomedical applications need to be further explored. This work introduces a method for fabricating hydrogel particles in an ellipsoidal cap-like shape (i.e., ellipsoidal cap-like hydrogel particles) by employing an open-pore anodic aluminum oxide membrane. Hydrogel particles of different sizes are fabricated. The ability to produce ellipsoidal cap-like magnetic hydrogel particles with controlled distribution of magnetic nanoparticles is demonstrated. Encapsulated cells show high viability, indicating the potential for using these hydrogel particles as structure- and remote-controllable building blocks for tissue engineering application. Moreover, the hydrogel particles are also used as sacrificial templates for fabricating ellipsoidal cap-like concave wells, which are further applied for producing size controllable cell aggregates. The results are beneficial for the development of hydrogel particles and their applications in 3D cell culture.
Immediate control of uncontrolled bleeding and infection are essential for saving lives in both combat and civilian arenas. Inorganic well-ordered mesoporous silica and bioactive glasses have recently shown great promise for accelerating hemostasis and infection control. However, to date, there has been no comprehensive report assessing their specific mechanism of action in accelerating the hemostasis process and exerting an antibacterial effect. After providing a brief overview of the hemostasis process, this review presents a critical overview of the recently developed inorganic mesoporous silica and bioactive glass-based materials proposed for hemostatic clinical applications and specifically investigates their unique characteristics that render them applicable for hemostatic applications and preventing infections. This article also identifies promising new research directions that should be undertaken to ascertain the effectiveness of these materials for hemostatic applications.
Recombinant vitronectin-grafted hydrogels were developed by adjusting surface charge of the hydrogels with grafting of poly-l-lysine for optimal culture of human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) under xeno- and feeder-free culture conditions, with elasticity regulated by crosslinking time (10-30 kPa), in contrast to conventional recombinant vitronectin coating dishes, which have a fixed stiff surface (3 GPa). hESCs proliferated on the hydrogels for over 10 passages and differentiated into the cells derived from three germ layers indicating the maintenance of pluripotency. hESCs on the hydrogels differentiated into cardiomyocytes under xeno-free culture conditions with much higher efficiency (80% of cTnT+ cells) than those on conventional recombinant vitronectin or Matrigel-coating dishes just only after 12 days of induction. It is important to have an optimal design of cell culture biomaterials where biological cues (recombinant vitronectin) and physical cues (optimal elasticity) are combined for high differentiation of hESCs into specific cell lineages, such as cardiomyocytes, under xeno-free and feeder-free culture conditions.