Micropatterned carbon nanotube embedded cell-laden gelatin methacrylate hybrid hydrogels for cardiac tissue
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of mortality in the world. Cardiac tissue engineering promises to replace damaged organs and tissues with biologically compatible engineered substitutes. Micro- and nanotechnologies have proven to be effective to address current challenges in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. A principle approach in tissue engineering is the integration of innovative biomaterials with micro- and nanofabrication techniques to generate constructs that recapitulate the in vivo cellular microenvironments. In this study, highly organized three-dimensional (3D) cardiac tissue constructs in carbon nanotube (CNT) embedded gelatin methacrylate (GelMA) were generated using micropatterning techniques. Neonatal rat ventricular cardiomyocytes (NRVMs) and cardiac fibroblasts (CFs) were used as the primary cardiac cell types to be encapsulated in the three-dimensional tissue constructs. The resulting cardiac constructs in CNT-GelMA hybrid hydrogels from various methods showed enhanced cell viability and higher spontaneous synchronous beating rates, compared to those in pristine GelMA hydrogels. Further studies are necessary to determine the efficacy of micropatterned 3D cardiac tissue constructs in CNT-GelMA hybrid hydrogels for in vitro studies and therapeutic purposes.
Thesis (M.A.)--Boston University