Facile Method for Fabrication of Meter-Long Multifunctional Hydrogel Fibers with Controllable Biophysical and Biochemical Features
2020-02-13T18:35:18Z (GMT) by
Hydrogel structures with microscale morphological features have extensive application in tissue engineering owing to their capacity to induce desired cellular behavior. Herein, we describe a novel biofabrication method for fabrication of grooved solid and hollow hydrogel fibers with control over their cross-sectional shape, surface morphology, porosity, and material composition. These fibers were further configured into three-dimensional structures using textile technologies such as weaving, braiding, and embroidering methods. Additionally, the capacity of these fibers to integrate various biochemical and biophysical cues was shown via incorporating drug-loaded microspheres, conductive materials, and magnetic particles, extending their application to smart drug delivery, wearable or implantable medical devices, and soft robotics. The efficacy of the grooved fibers to induce cellular alignment was evaluated on various cell types including myoblasts, cardiomyocytes, cardiac fibroblasts, and glioma cells. In particular, these fibers were shown to induce controlled myogenic differentiation and morphological changes, depending on their groove size, in C2C12 myoblasts.