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J Biomater Sci Polym Ed. 2007;18(8):1017-30.

Photopolymerized poly(ethylene glycol)/poly(L-lysine) hydrogels for the delivery of neural progenitor cells.

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Department of Biomedical Engineering, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520, USA.


Neural progenitor cells (NPCs) have shown promise in a number of models of disease and injury, but for these cells to be safe and effective, they must be directed to differentiate appropriately following transplantation. We have developed a photopolymerized hydrogel composed of macromers of poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) bound to poly(L-lysine) (PLL) that supports NPC survival and directs differentiation. Green fluorescent protein (GFP) positive NPCs were encapsulated in these gels and demonstrated survival up to 17 days. When encapsulated in the gels at a photoinitiator concentration of 5.0 mg/ml, few NPCs (0.5 +/- 0.25%) demonstrated apoptosis. Furthermore, 55 +/- 6% of the NPCs cultured within the gels in epidermal growth factor (EGF) containing media differentiated into a mature neuronal cell type (neurofilament 200 positive) while the remainder 44 +/- 8% were undifferentiated (nestin positive). A small percentage, 1 +/- 0.4%, expressed the astrocytic marker glial acidic fibrilary protein. Photopolymerized PEG/PLL gels promote the survival and direct the differentiation of NPCs, making this system a promising delivery vehicle for NPCs in the treatment of injuries and diseases of the central nervous system.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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