Assessments of injectable alginate particle-embedded fibrin hydrogels for soft tissue reconstruction

C. M. Hwang, B. Ay, D. L. Kaplan, J. P. Rubin, K. G. Marra, A. Atala, J. J. Yoo, S. J. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Soft tissue reconstruction is often needed after massive traumatic damage or cancer removal. In this study, we developed a novel hybrid hydrogel system consisting of alginate particles and a fibrin matrix that could maintain tissue volume long term. Alginate particles were fabricated by mixing 5% alginate with a 20 mM calcium solution. Cells and these alginate particles were then embedded in fibrin (alginate-fibrin) hydrogels using a dual syringe mixer. Cell-hydrogel constructs were evaluated in terms of cell survival and proliferation in the constructs in vitro. The results indicated that cellular viability, spreading and proliferation in the alginate-fibrin hydrogels were significantly higher compared to constructs fabricated with fibrin or alginate only. In vivo explants showed that cells contained within fibrin-only hydrogels did not contribute to neo-tissue formation, and the fibrin was fully degraded within a 12 week period. In the alginate-fibrin system, higher cellularity and vascular ingrowth were observed in vivo. This resulted in neo-tissue formation in the alginate-fibrin hydrogels. These results demonstrate that fibrin may enhance cell proliferation and accelerate the formation of extracellular matrix proteins in the alginate-fibrin system, while the alginate particles could contribute to volume retention. This injectable hybrid system composed of degradable and non-degradable hydrogels may be a preferable approach to the repair of soft tissue defects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number014105
JournalBiomedical Materials (Bristol)
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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