Bone tissue engineering is an emerging medical field that has been developed in recent years to address pathologies with limited ability of bones to regenerate. Here we report the fabrication and characterization of microbial transglutaminase crosslinked gelatin-based scaffolds designed for serving as both cell substrate and growth factor release system. In particular, morphological, biomechanical and biological features have been analyzed. The enzyme ratio applied during the fabrication of the scaffolds affects the swelling capacity and the mechanical properties of the final structure. The developed systems are not cytotoxic according to the biocompatibility tests. The biological performance of selected formulations was studied using L-929 fibroblasts, D1 MSC and MG63 osteoblasts. Moreover, scaffolds allowed efficient osteogenic differentiation and signaling of MSCs. MSC cultured on the scaffolds not only presented lower proliferative and stemness profile, but also increased expression of osteoblast-related genes (Col1a1, Runx2, Osx). Furthermore, the in vitro release kinetics of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and bone morphogenetic protein -2 (BMP-2) from the scaffolds were also investigated. The release of the growth factors produced from the scaffolds followed a first order kinetics. These results highlight that the scaffolds designed and developed in this work may be suitable candidates for bone tissue regeneration purposes.
- Drug Delivery
- Tissue Engineering