Micro-clotting of platelet-rich plasma upon loading in hydrogel microspheres leads to prolonged protein release and slower microsphere degradation

Miran Hannah Choi, Alexandra Blanco, Samuel Stealey, Xin Duan, Natasha Case, Scott Allen Sell, Muhammad Farooq Rai, Silviya Petrova Zustiak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) is an autologous blood product that contains a variety of growth factors (GFs) that are released upon platelet activation. Despite some therapeutic potential of PRP in vitro, in vivo data are not convincing. Bolus injection of PRP is cleared rapidly from the body diminishing its therapeutic efficacy. This highlights a need for a delivery vehicle for a sustained release of PRP to improve its therapeutic effect. In this study, we used microfluidics to fabricate biodegradable PRP-loaded polyethylene glycol (PEG) microspheres. PRP was incorporated into the microspheres as a lyophilized PRP powder either as is (powder PRP) or first solubilized and pre-clotted to remove clots (liquid PRP). A high PRP loading of 10% w/v was achieved for both PRP preparations. We characterized the properties of the resulting PRP-loaded PEG microspheres including swelling, modulus, degradation, and protein release as a function of PRP loading and preparation. Overall, loading powder PRP into the PEG microspheres significantly affected the properties of microspheres, with the most pronounced effect noted in degradation. We further determined that microsphere degradation in the presence of powder PRP was affected by platelet aggregation and clotting. Platelet aggregation did not prevent but prolonged sustained PRP release from the microspheres. The delivery system developed and characterized herein could be useful for the loading and releasing of PRP to promote tissue regeneration and wound healing or to suppress tissue degeneration in osteoarthritis, and intervertebral disc degeneration.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1712
JournalPolymers
Volume12
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2020

Keywords

  • Drug delivery
  • Injectable
  • Microspheres
  • PRP therapy
  • Polyethylene glycol

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