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Adv Healthc Mater. 2017 Nov;6(21). doi: 10.1002/adhm.201700598. Epub 2017 Jul 31.

Freeze-Drying as a Novel Biofabrication Method for Achieving a Controlled Microarchitecture within Large, Complex Natural Biomaterial Scaffolds.

Author information

1
Tissue Engineering Research Group, Department of Anatomy, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, 123 St. Stephen's Green, Dublin 2, Ireland.
2
School of Mechanical and Design Engineering, Dublin Institute of Technology, Bolton St, Dublin 1, Ireland.
3
Advanced Materials and Bioengineering Research (AMBER) Centre, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland.
4
Trinity Centre for Bioengineering, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland.
5
School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, Dublin City University, Dublin 9, Ireland.
6
Department of Women's Health, Research Institute of Women's Health, University Hospital of the Eberhard Karls University Tübingen, 72074, Tübingen, Germany.
7
Department of Cell and Tissue Engineering, Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB, 70569, Stuttgart, Germany.
8
Department of Biohybrid and Medical Textiles (BioTex) at AME-Helmholtz Institute for Biomedical Engineering and ITA-Institut für Textiltechnik, RWTH Aachen University, 52074, Aachen, Germany.
9
School of Medicine, University College Dublin, Dublin 4, Ireland.

Abstract

The biofabrication of large natural biomaterial scaffolds into complex 3D shapes which have a controlled microarchitecture remains a major challenge. Freeze-drying (or lyophilization) is a technique used to generate scaffolds in planar 3D geometries. Here we report the development of a new biofabrication process to form a collagen-based scaffold into a large, complex geometry which has a large height to width ratio, and a controlled porous microarchitecture. This biofabrication process is validated through the successful development of a heart valve shaped scaffold, fabricated from a collagen-glycosaminoglycan co-polymer. Notably, despite the significant challenges in using freeze-drying to create such a structure, the resultant scaffold has a uniform, homogenous pore architecture throughout. This is achieved through optimization of the freeze-drying mold and the freezing parameters. We believe this to be the first demonstration of using freeze-drying to create a large, complex scaffold geometry with a controlled, porous architecture for natural biomaterials. This study validates the potential of using freeze-drying for development of organ-specific scaffold geometries for tissue engineering applications, which up until now might not have been considered feasible.

KEYWORDS:

collagen; freeze-drying; heart valves; scaffolds; tissue engineering

PMID:
28758358
DOI:
10.1002/adhm.201700598
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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