Background: Fibrinogen is a soluble plasma protein that is converted to insoluble fibrin fibers in response to damage to the vascular system. The temporary fibrin matrix promotes cell adhesion, migration, and proliferation, which are essential to wound healing. Bioengineered fibrin gels are used to promote wound healing in various clinical applications. However, most commercially available fibrin gels do not fully match the mechanical properties of the target tissues. High concentrations of protein inhibit cellular infiltration and biomaterial integration. Low concentrations of protein result in gels with weak mechanical strength that are not practical for clinical use. The ideal fibrin material would be both permissive to cell infiltration and regeneration while retaining mechanical properties appropriate to each specific application.
Technology: Investigators at Georgia Tech have developed hybrid fibrin-microgel constructs for enhanced cell infiltration and wound healing applications. Proof of concept studies show that incorporating microgels (hydrogel microparticles) into fibrin gels generates a more porous matrix while maintaining its mechanical properties. Microgels form unique interconnected structures within the fibrin matrix, allowing for enhanced cell infiltration, remodeling, and regeneration, when compared to currently available fibrin gels. These hybrid constructs can also be used to deliver therapeutic, diagnostic, nutraceuticals, prophylactic, and cosmetic agents to a desired site.
Potential Commercial Applications: The hybrid fibrin-microgel can be used to facilitate tissue engineering, biologics delivery, wound healing, tissue regeneration, stem cell delivery, and angiogenesis.
Enables cell spreading and migration within dense fibrin networks
Retains overall mechanical properties of fibrin matrices
Can be used to deliver therapeutic, diagnostic, nutraceuticals, prophylactic, and cosmetic agents to a desired site.
Applications in tissue engineering, biologics delivery, wound healing, tissue regeneration, stem cell delivery, and angiogenesis.