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Pharm Res. 2013 Aug;30(8):2157-65. doi: 10.1007/s11095-013-1076-6. Epub 2013 May 18.

Co-delivery of vascular endothelial growth factor and angiopoietin-1 using injectable microsphere/hydrogel hybrid systems for therapeutic angiogenesis.

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  • 1Department of Bioengineering, Hanyang University, Seoul 133-791, Republic of Korea.



We hypothesized that combined delivery of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1) using microsphere/hydrogel hybrid systems could enhance mature vessel formation compared with administration of each factor alone.


Hybrid delivery systems composed of alginate hydrogels and poly(D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) microspheres containing angiogenic factors were prepared. The release behavior of angiogenic factors from hybrid systems was monitored in vitro. The hybrid systems were injected into an ischemic rodent model, and blood vessel formation at the ischemic site was evaluated.


The sustained release over 4 weeks of both VEGF and Ang-1 from hybrid systems was achieved in vitro. Co-delivery of VEGF and Ang-1 was advantageous to retain muscle tissues and significantly induced vessel enlargement at the ischemic site, compared to mice treated with either VEGF or Ang-1 alone.


Sustained and combined delivery of VEGF and Ang-1 significantly enhances vessel enlargement at the ischemic site, compared with sustained delivery of either factor alone. Microsphere/hydrogel hybrid systems may be a promising vehicle for delivery of multiple drugs for many therapeutic applications.

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