Bioprinting for bone repair improved with genes
Published in Bioprinting.
Given enough time and energy, the body will heal, but when doctors or engineers intervene, the processes do not always proceed as planned because chemicals that control and facilitate the healing process are missing. Now, an international team of engineers is bioprinting bone along with two growth factor encoding genes that help incorporate the cells and heal defects in the skulls of rats.
“Growth factors are essential for cell growth,” said Ibrahim T. Ozbolat, associate professor of engineering science and mechanics. “We use two different genes encoding two different growth factors. These growth factors help stem cells to migrate into the defect area and then help the progenitor cells to convert into bone.”
The researchers used gene encoding PDGF-B, platelet derived-growth factor, which encourages cells to multiply and to migrate, and gene encoding BMP-2, bone morphogenetic protein, which improves bone regeneration. They delivered both genes using bioprinting.
“We used a controlled co-delivery release of plasmids from a gene-activated matrix to promote bone repair,” the researchers stated in the journal Biomaterials.