(Peer-Reviewed) Hydrogels with Dynamically Controllable Mechanics and Biochemistry for 3D Cell Culture Platforms
Hai-Yang Wu 吴海洋 ¹ ² ³, Lei Yang 杨磊 ¹ ² ³, Jiang-Shan Tu ¹ ² ³, Jie Wang 王杰 ⁴, Jin-Ge Li 李金歌 ¹ ² ³, Hong-Ying Lv 吕红英 ¹ ³, Xiao-Niu Yang 杨小牛 ¹ ² ³
¹ State Key Laboratory of Polymer Physics and Chemistry, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022, China
中国 长春 中国科学院长春应用化学研究所 高分子物理与化学国家重点实验室
² School of Applied Chemistry and Engineering, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei 230026, China
中国 合肥 中国科学技术大学应用化学与工程学院
³ Polymer Composite Engineering Laboratory, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun 130022, China
中国 长春 中国科学院长春应用化学研究所 高分子复合材料工程实验室
⁴ Huangpu Institute of Advanced Materials, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510530, China
中国 广州 中国科学院长春应用化学研究所 黄埔先进材料研究所
Many cell-matrix interaction studies have proved that dynamic changes in the extracellular matrix (ECM) are crucial to maintain cellular properties and behaviors. Thus, developing materials that can recapitulate the dynamic attributes of the ECM is highly desired for three-dimensional (3D) cell culture platforms.
To this end, we sought to develop a hydrogel system that would enable dynamic and reversible turning of its mechanical and biochemical properties, thus facilitating the control of cell culture to imitate the natural ECM. Herein, a hydrogel with dynamic mechanics and a biochemistry based on an addition-fragmentation chain transfer (AFCT) reaction was constructed. Thiol-modified hyaluronic acid (HA) and allyl sulfide-modified ε-poly-L-lysine (EPL) were synthesized to form hydrogels, which were non-swellable and biocompatible.
The reversible modulus of the hydrogel was first achieved through the AFCT reaction; the modulus can also be regulated stepwise by changing the dose of UVA irradiation. Dynamic patterning of fluorescent markers in the hydrogel was also realized. Therefore, this dynamically controllable hydrogel has great potential as a 3D cell culture platform for tissue engineering applications.