The successful replacement of large-scale cartilage defects or osteoarthritic lesions using tissue-engineering approaches will likely require composite biomaterial scaffolds that have biomimetic mechanical properties and can provide cell-instructive cues to control the growth and differentiation of embedded stem or progenitor cells. This study describes a novel method of constructing multifunctional scaffolds for cartilage tissue engineering that can provide both mechanical support and biological stimulation to seeded progenitor cells. 3-D woven PCL scaffolds were infiltrated with a slurry of homogenized CDM of porcine origin, seeded with human ASCs, and cultured for up to 42 d under standard growth conditions. These constructs were compared to scaffolds derived solely from CDM as well as 3-D woven PCL fabric without CDM. While all scaffolds promoted a chondrogenic phenotype of the ASCs, CDM scaffolds showed low compressive and shear moduli and contracted significantly during culture. Fiber-reinforced CDM scaffolds and 3-D woven PCL scaffolds maintained their mechanical properties throughout the culture period, while supporting the accumulation of a cartilaginous extracellular matrix. These findings show that fiber-reinforced hybrid scaffolds can be produced with biomimetic mechanical properties as well as the ability to promote ASC differentiation and chondrogenesis in vitro.In this work a novel method of constructing multifunctional scaffolds for cartilage tissue engineering is described. 3-D woven poly(ε-caprolactone) scaffolds are infiltrated with homogenized cartilage-derived matrix, seeded with human adipose-derived stem cells, and cultured for up to 42 d under standard growth conditions.
- Biological applications of polymers
- Mechanical properties