Author(s): Gelain F
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Abstract Over the last decades, tissue engineering has demonstrated an unquestionable potential to regenerate damaged tissues and organs. Some tissue-engineered solutions recently entered the clinics (eg, artificial bladder, corneal epithelium, engineered skin), but most of the pathologies of interest are still far from being solved. The advent of stem cells opened the door to large-scale production of "raw living matter" for cell replacement and boosted the overall sector in the last decade. Still reliable synthetic scaffolds fairly resembling the nanostructure of extracellular matrices, showing mechanical properties comparable to those of the tissues to be regenerated and capable of being modularly functionalized with biological active motifs, became feasible only in the last years thanks to newly introduced nanotechnology techniques of material design, synthesis, and characterization. Nanostructured synthetic matrices look to be the next generation scaffolds, opening new powerful pathways for tissue regeneration and introducing new challenges at the same time. We here present a detailed overview of the advantages, applications, and limitations of nanostructured matrices with a focus on both electrospun and self-assembling scaffolds.
This article was published in Int J Nanomedicine
and referenced in Journal of Nanomedicine & Biotherapeutic Discovery