Success of tissue implants 'depends on cell shape'

15 August 2012

While tissue implants created from cells grown on a sponge-like scaffold have been shown in clinical trials to help heal arteries in a number of capsular diseases, scientists have thus far been baffled as to why some implants work better than others.

However, new research has found that the therapeutic properties of implanted cells very much depend on their shape, according to research published online in the journal Biomaterials.

The shape of the cells is determined by the type of scaffold on which they are grown, meaning this work could help scientists to develop more effective implants and target even more diseases than the cells are currently used for, like cancer.

Researcher Laura Indolfi explained: "The goal is to design a material that can engineer the cells to release whatever we think is most appropriate to fight a specific disease. Then we can implant the cells and use them as an incubator."

Posted by Philip Briggs

 

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