Biodegradeable Nanopolymer Bone and Tissue Scaffolds

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Researchers have developed biodegradeable nanopolymer scaffolds as improvements over traditional solid scaffolds for bone and tissue growth and regeneration.  These bone and tissue scaffolds are engineered to have better cell adhesion, proliferation and differentiation than traditional scaffolds, allowing for more functional tissue, organ and bone growth or grafts in patients with deterioration[1]

The scaffolds work by allowing for the attachment of tissue cells to a biodegradeable matrix that acts as an intermediate extracellular matrix (ECM).  In the body, cells interact with the ECM of other cells before forming new tissue, and this technology improves that interaction over previous scaffolds.  The nanoporous materials used in these new tissue and bone scaffolds have greater surface area and are textured to create stronger bonds between the graft and the tissue.  Tissue structures are naturally made by collagen strands that form matrices, and these scaffolds better mimic the natural fibrous collagen structures present in tissues.

The scaffolds are manufactured through various processes including electrospinning, molecular self-assembly, and phase separation.  Three dimensional printing techniques that work in combination with electrospinning fabrication are currently in the development phase.  Different types of cell scaffolds are used depending on the tissue type to optimize tissue regeneration in patients.  The nanomaterials used include various synthetic and natural materials that include poly acids, alcohols, and ethylene oxides and fibrous nanomaterials created from gelatin, collagen, silk protein and fibrinogen.



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The purpose of this product is to improve tissue regeneration in bone and tissue grafting by creating biodegradable nano-structures that mimic the 50-500nm thick strands common in tissue collagen.






Benefit Summary: 

This technology has the potential to reduce immune rejection and improve the regeneration of tissue grafts in patients, positively impacting quality of care and healthcare costs.


Risk Summary: 

The ecological and human health risks of this technology are low. The Scaffolds are made from biodegradable synthetic and organic materials that closely mimic biological materials inside of tissue. The techniques used to fabricate these scaffolds are also relatively safe and create scaffolds from liquid solutions.

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