Research Article: Biologically Inspired, Cell-Selective Release of Aptamer-Trapped Growth Factors by Traction Forces

Date Published: January 15, 2019


Author(s): Anna Stejskalová, Nuria Oliva, Frances J. England, Benjamin D. Almquist.


Biomaterial scaffolds that are designed to incorporate dynamic,
spatiotemporal information have the potential to interface with cells and
tissues to direct behavior. Here, a bioinspired, programmable
nanotechnology-based platform is described that harnesses cellular traction
forces to activate growth factors, eliminating the need for exogenous triggers
(e.g., light), spatially diffuse triggers (e.g., enzymes, pH changes), or
passive activation (e.g., hydrolysis). Flexible aptamer technology is used to
create modular, synthetic mimics of the Large Latent Complex that restrains
transforming growth factor-β1
(TGF-β1). This flexible nanotechnology-based
approach is shown here to work with both platelet-derived growth factor-BB
(PDGF-BB) and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF-165), integrate with
glass coverslips, polyacrylamide gels, and collagen scaffolds, enable activation
by various cells (e.g., primary human dermal fibroblasts, HMEC-1 endothelial
cells), and unlock fundamentally new capabilities such as selective activation
of growth factors by differing cell types (e.g., activation by smooth muscle
cells but not fibroblasts) within clinically relevant collagen sponges.

Partial Text

Detailed experimental methods can be found in the Supporting Information.

Supporting Information is available from the Wiley Online Library or from
the author.




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