Multivalent nano-conjugates for targeted penetration of and delivery to dense extracellular matrices and, specifically, bone regeneration can be achieved through the temporal release of controlled doses of growth factors. These growth factors can improve cell differentiation and healing responses. By tuning their release kinetics over time, growth factors can be administered from a tissue engineering scaffold to better guide cell behavior. The Hammond group has developed layer-by-layer (LBL) growth factor coating processes that can cover surfaces ranging from nanoparticles to physiologically sized polymeric implants. Applying these hydrolytically degradable coatings allows for sequential or multi-drug release which can be used to tune tissue response to 3D printed tissue engineering scaffolds.
This project aims to enhance the osteogenic differentiation response of seeded MSCs on LBL-coated scaffolds. LBL coatings will consist of various BMP2 concentrations in three layers, and the 3DP scaffolds will contain different concentrations of ceramics based on TR&D3’s previous work. Concentrations of growth factors and ceramics will be tuned to achieve the highest level of osteogenic response from MSCs. Scaffolds will be validated in vivo for further optimization of the best performing coating and ceramic compositions within the 3DP scaffolds. Once these studies are completed, similar aims will be developed using the decellularized extracellular matrix (dECM)-based 3D-printing materials developed by TR&D3 for muscle tissue.