Structure-Property Evaluation of Thermally and Chemically Gelling Injectable Hydrogels for Tissue Engineering
The impact of synthesis and solution formulation parameters on the swelling and mechanical properties of a novel class of thermally and chemically gelling hydrogels combining poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)-based thermogelling macromers containing pendant epoxy rings with polyamidoamine-based hydrophilic and degradable diamine cross-linking macromers was evaluated. Through variation of network hydrophilicity and capacity for chain rearrangement, the often problematic tendency of thermogelling hydrogels to undergo significant syneresis was addressed. The demonstrated ability to tune postformation dimensional stability easily at both the synthesis and formulation stages represents a significant novel contribution toward efforts to utilize poly(N-isopropylacrylamide)-based polymers as injectable biomaterials. Furthermore, the cytocompatibility of the hydrogel system under relevant conditions was established while demonstrating time- and dose-dependent cytotoxicity at high solution osmolality. Such injectable in situ forming degradable hydrogels with tunable water content are promising candidates for many tissue-engineering applications, particularly for cell delivery to promote rapid tissue regeneration in non-load-bearing defects.
poly(N-isopropylacrylamide); polyamidoamine; tissue engineering; injectable; hydrogel