University of Toronto researchers show that engineered ‘hydrogels’ not only help with stem cell transplantation, but actually speed healing in both the eye and brain
Toronto scientists and engineers have made a breakthrough in cell transplantation using a gel-like biomaterial that keeps cells alive and helps them integrate better into tissue. In two early lab trials, this has already shown to partially reverse blindness and help the brain recover from stroke.
Led by University of Toronto professors Molly Shoichet (ChemE, IBBME) and Derek van der Kooy, together with Professor Cindi Morshead, the team encased stem cells in a hydrogel that boosted their healing abilities when transplanted into both the eye and the brain. These findings are part of an ongoing effort to develop new therapies to repair nerve damage caused by a disease or injury.
Conducted through the U of T’s Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research, their research was published in today’s issue of Stem Cell Reports, the official scientific journal of the International Society for Stem Cell Research.
Stem cells hold great therapeutic promise because of their ability to turn into any cell type in the body, including their potential to generate replacement tissues and organs. While scientists are adept at growing stem cells in a lab dish, once these cells are on their own—transplanted into a desired spot in the body—they have trouble thriving. The new environment is complex and poorly understood, and implanted stem cells often die or don’t integrate properly into the surrounding tissue.
Shoichet, a bioengineer who recently won the prestigious L’Oreal-UNESCO for Women in Science Award, and her team created the hydrogel several years ago as a kind of a bubble wrap to hold cells together during transport and delivery into a transplant site.
“This study goes one step further, showing that the hydrogels do more than just hold stem cells together; they directly promote stem cell survival and integration. This brings stem-cell based therapy closer to reality” says Shoichet, whose affiliations span the Donnelly Centre, the Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry and the Institute of Biomaterials & Biomedical Engineering at U of T.
Restoring partial vision
In addition to examining how the stem cells benefit from life in hydrogels, the researchers also showed that these new cells could help restore function that was lost due to damage or disease.
One part of the Stem Cell Reports study involved the team injecting hydrogel-encapsulated photoreceptors, grown from stem cells, into the eyes of blind mice. Photoreceptors are the light sensing cells responsible for vision in the eye. With increased cell survival and integration in the stem cells, they were able to partially restore vision.
The Latest on: Hydrogels
via Google News
The Latest on: Hydrogels
- CorMedix Inc. To Report Second Quarter 2022 Financial Results and Provide a Corporate Update on August 11on August 1, 2022 at 5:30 am
CorMedix Inc. (NASDAQ:CRMD), a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing therapeutic products for the prevention and treatment of ...
- Inflating spider corpse creates robotic claw game of nightmareson July 29, 2022 at 11:11 am
They transformed a dead wolf spider into a gripping tool with just a single assembly step—essentially launching a novel new research area they have cheekily dubbed "necrobotics." They outlined the ...
- Scientists kill spiders and turn them into clawed ‘necrobots’on July 29, 2022 at 2:53 am
Researchers have used deceased spiders ’ legs as mechanical grippers in a macabre experiment. Rice University mechanical engineers have been developing ‘necrobotics’ based on existing research of ...
- Self-Healing Hydrogels for Smart Wearable Strain Sensors Inspired by Muscleson July 29, 2022 at 1:05 am
The hydrogels were based on flexible poly [acrylamide-co-(acrylic acid)] (poly (AAm-co-AAc)), and rigid graphene oxide-functionalized nanocellulose ([email protected]) networks were integrated into ...
- Hydrogels with Flexible Electronics Herald New Medical Possibilitieson July 28, 2022 at 5:00 pm
Scientists around the world are actively using hydrogels as novel materials to interface with the body in a variety of ways. At the same time, the field of flexible electronics has progressed to ...
- Bacterial Microrobots Deliver Drug Payload to Tumorson July 28, 2022 at 12:45 pm
Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Germany have developed tumor-targeting microrobots using bacteria. The team exploited the tendency of bacteria to naturally gravitate ...
- Global 3D Hydrogels for Cell Culture Market Competitive Landscape and Analysis by Recent Trends 2022 to 2028on July 19, 2022 at 3:32 am
Jul 18, 2022 (CDN Newswire via Comtex) -- The Global 3D Hydrogels for Cell Culture Market research report by the MarketsandResearch.biz is an in-depth study analysis of the strategies of the key ...
- Probiotic Hydrogels Designed as Spray-On Bandage for Intestineson July 14, 2022 at 5:01 pm
Hydrogels are finding their way into medical applications due to their softness and the ease with which they can be made bio-compatible. One latest use for this type of materials comes from Harvard ...
- Study Expands Gold Nanomaterial Potential for Anticounterfeiting Applicationson June 30, 2022 at 8:07 am
Study: Au Nanocluster-Based Smart Multicolor Luminescent Hydrogels for Encryption Applications. Image Credit: wk1003mike/Shutterstock.com An ordered arrangement of the coassembled PRT-AuNCs/TA ...
- Are 4D Hydrogels the Shape of Things to Come in Tissue Engineering?on June 29, 2022 at 5:00 pm
New 4D hydrogels — 3D materials that have the ability to change shape over time in response to stimuli — may lead to the development of human tissues, and even organs, that are more like their natural ...
via Bing News