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Biomaterials. 2009 Feb;30(6):1214-21. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2008.11.017. Epub 2008 Dec 6.

Drug carrier systems based on collagen-alginate composite structures for improving the performance of GDNF-secreting HEK293 cells.

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Medical Engineering Program, Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam Road, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China.


Glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) is a potent neurotrophic factor. Development of drug delivery technologies facilitating controlled release of GDNF is critical to applying GDNF in treating neurodegenerative diseases. We previously developed 3D collagen microspheres and demonstrated enhanced GDNF secretion after encapsulation of HEK293 cells, which were transduced to overexpress GDNF in these microspheres. However, the entrapped HEK293 cells were able to migrate out of the collagen microspheres, making it undesirable for clinical applications. In this report, we investigate two new carrier designs, namely collagen-alginate composite gel and collagen microspheres embedded in alginate gel in preventing cell leakage, maintaining cell growth and controlling GDNF secretion in the HEK293 cells. We demonstrated that inclusion of alginate gel in both designs is efficient in preventing cell leakage to the surrounding yet permitting the GDNF secretion, although the cellular growth rate is reduced in an alginate concentration dependent manner. Differential patterns of GDNF secretion in the two designs were demonstrated. The collagen-alginate composite gel maintains a more or less constant GDNF secretion over time while the collagen microspheres embedded in alginate gel continue to increase the secretion level of GDNF over time. This study contributes towards the development of cell-based GDNF delivery devices for the future therapeutics of neurodegenerative diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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