alexa Hydrogels as Biomaterials How Long More is the Road Ahead? | OMICS International
ISSN: 1662-100X
Journal of Biomimetics Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering
Make the best use of Scientific Research and information from our 700+ peer reviewed, Open Access Journals that operates with the help of 50,000+ Editorial Board Members and esteemed reviewers and 1000+ Scientific associations in Medical, Clinical, Pharmaceutical, Engineering, Technology and Management Fields.
Meet Inspiring Speakers and Experts at our 3000+ Global Conferenceseries Events with over 600+ Conferences, 1200+ Symposiums and 1200+ Workshops on
Medical, Pharma, Engineering, Science, Technology and Business

Hydrogels as Biomaterials ? How Long More is the Road Ahead?

Loh Xian Jun*

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, National University of Singapore, 9 Engineering Drive 1, Singapore 117576, Singapore

Corresponding Author:
Loh Xian Jun
Department of Materials Science and Engineering
National University of Singapore
9 Engineering Drive 1
Singapore 117576, Singapore
Tel: + (65)65167484
Fax: +( 65)67763604
E-mail: [email protected]

Received January 25, 2014; Accepted January 27, 2014; Published February 03, 2014

Citation: Jun LX (2014) Hydrogels as Biomaterials – How Long More is the Road Ahead? J Biomim Biomater Tissue Eng 19:e104. doi:10.4172/1662-100X.1000e104

Copyright: © 2014 Jun LX. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Visit for more related articles at Journal of Biomimetics Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering

This is my first editorial contribution to Journal of Biomimetics, Biomaterials & Tissue Engineering and I would like to take the opportunity to discuss the potential of hydrogels as biomaterials. From contact lens to diapers, we find hydrogels everywhere. In terms of development of the material, there is still much more to be done.

As society ages, there is greater demand for improved organ functions and repair of damaged tissues. This has led to the use of synthetic materials in different parts of our body. Traditional covalent chemistry has served us well in terms of the design of materials. The question is what lies ahead for the future of biomaterials? The future of soft biomaterials demands easy synthesis, the ability to respond to multistimuli, safety and efficacy. Polymeric hydrogels can be categorized in numerous ways depending on the type of polymer and their structural characteristics. Chemically cross linked hydrogels are formed by polymer chains linked permanently by non-reversible covalent bonds. This causes the hydrogels to be brittle, at times opaque and not having the self-healing property when the network is disrupted. These covalent bonds can be made using various reactions such as Michael type addition, Schiff base formation, thiol-ene photopolymerizations, free radical photo polymerisation, enzyme-triggered reactions and “click” reactions. Chemical cross-linking can be modulated in order to sufficiently modify the mechanical properties of hydrogels and it has been frequently used when tough and stable hydrogels are desired. Unlike traditional chemistry which relies on covalent interactions, supramolecular chemistry focuses on weaker and reversible noncovalent interactions between molecules. Supramolecular hydrogels are the next-generation materials to enter the biomedical arena. These materials are three-dimensional entities built from cross-linking agents which bond non-covalently (via hydrogen bonds, π-π stacking and van der Waals interactions) to produce fibers and cross linking among fibers. The properties of these materials are vastly different from their covalent counterparts.

The use of injectable supramolecular hydrogels as tissue engineering scaffolds is promising owing to their ability to delivery therapeutics in a sustained and controlled manner. Drugs and cells can be easily encapsulated within the hydrogel matrix. The ideal injectable hydrogel needs to be carefully designed, taking into consideration the hydrogel’s physical, chemical and biological properties. Enormous efforts have been put into the development of injectable hydrogels for the support and repair of the body tissues. Ideally, an injectable hydrogel should mimic the role of the extracellular matrix found in tissues. The biomaterials reported up to date do not meet all the design parameters simultaneously (e.g., lifetime, compatibility with the body or mechanical strength). It can be expected that research into the development of injectable hydrogels will have a huge impact on the progress of tissue engineering. Looking towards the future, the design of bioactive materials that canbe injected at room temperature and form semi-solid gels under physiological conditions will be greatly explored. These gels would also need to be optimised to support cell induction. New crosslinking methods should be developed, both to enhance the material biocompatibility (in terms of the cross-linking agents used) as well as control the mechanical properties. Finally, a truly biomimetic hydrogel should include the natural cell induction ligands such as growth factors and genes which have to be incorporated into the injectable hydrogel constructs so that definite and precise signals can be delivered in an appropriate spatial and temporal manner.

Select your language of interest to view the total content in your interested language
Post your comment

Share This Article

Relevant Topics

Recommended Journals

Article Usage

  • Total views: 11623
  • [From(publication date):
    February-2014 - Jun 24, 2018]
  • Breakdown by view type
  • HTML page views : 7799
  • PDF downloads : 3824

Post your comment

captcha   Reload  Can't read the image? click here to refresh

Peer Reviewed Journals
Make the best use of Scientific Research and information from our 700 + peer reviewed, Open Access Journals
International Conferences 2018-19
Meet Inspiring Speakers and Experts at our 3000+ Global Annual Meetings

Contact Us

Agri & Aquaculture Journals

Dr. Krish

[email protected]

+1-702-714-7001Extn: 9040

Biochemistry Journals

Datta A

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9037

Business & Management Journals


[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

Chemistry Journals

Gabriel Shaw

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9040

Clinical Journals

Datta A

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9037

Engineering Journals

James Franklin

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

Food & Nutrition Journals

Katie Wilson

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

General Science

Andrea Jason

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9043

Genetics & Molecular Biology Journals

Anna Melissa

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9006

Immunology & Microbiology Journals

David Gorantl

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9014

Materials Science Journals

Rachle Green

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9039

Nursing & Health Care Journals

Stephanie Skinner

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9039

Medical Journals

Nimmi Anna

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9038

Neuroscience & Psychology Journals

Nathan T

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9041

Pharmaceutical Sciences Journals

Ann Jose

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9007

Social & Political Science Journals

Steve Harry

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

© 2008- 2018 OMICS International - Open Access Publisher. Best viewed in Mozilla Firefox | Google Chrome | Above IE 7.0 version
Leave Your Message 24x7