Silk scaffolds for artificial organs
doi:10.1038/nindia.2009.329 Published online 9 November 2009
Researchers have designed a silk protein-based tiny scaffold that could revolutionize tissue engineering1.
The tiny biocompatible fibrous scaffold may have a wide range of applications in making dressing materials for burns and wounds or as a matrix for bio artificial liver devices.
The researchers purified fibroin, a protein from the cocoons of Antheraea assama, an indigenous species of silkworm from Assam.
They fabricated a non-woven scaffold comprising micro (1-20 micrometer) and nano fibres (150-500 nm). It split fibroin into fibrils. The nano-fibrous network provided increased surface area for cell growth and the micro-fibres provide adequate mechanical strength.
Studies with cultured lung carcinoma cell line reveal that the fibroin-based scaffolds are biocompatible, nontoxic and possess enhanced blood compatibility.
"The scaffold has a favorable chemistry and internal micro-architecture required for a good biological response," says lead researcher Utpal Bora. The team is exploring the possibility of a fibroin-based template for three dimensional cell culture of cells for application in drug screening.
The authors of this work are from: Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering Laboratory, Department of Biotechnology, Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati, Assam and Tissue Engineering and Banking Laboratory, National Centre for Cell Science, Pune, Maharashtra, India.
- Kasoju, N. et al. Fabrication of a novel micro–nano fibrous nonwoven scaffold with Antheraea assama silk fibroin for use in tissue engineering. Mater. Lett. 63, 2466-2469 (2009) | Article |