Instructive electroactive electrospun silk fibroin-based biomaterials for peripheral nerve tissue engineering

Phamornnak, Chinnawich and Han, Bing and Spencer, Ben and Ashton, Mark and Blanford, Chris and Hardy, John and Blaker, Jonny and Cartmell, Sarah (2022) Instructive electroactive electrospun silk fibroin-based biomaterials for peripheral nerve tissue engineering. Biomaterials Advances. ISSN 2772-9508

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Aligned sub-micron fibres are an outstanding surface for orienting and promoting neurite outgrowth; therefore, attractive features to include in peripheral nerve tissue scaffolds. A new generation of peripheral nerve tissue scaffolds is under development incorporating electroactive materials and electrical regimes as instructive cues in order to facilitate full functional regeneration. Herein, electroactive fibres composed of silk fibroin (SF) and poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene):polystyrene sulfonate (PEDOT:PSS) were developed as a novel peripheral nerve tissue scaffold. Mats of SF with sub-micron diameter of 190 ± 50 nm were fabricated by double layers electrospinning with thicknesses of ~100 μm (~70–80 μm random fibres and ~20–30 μm aligned fibres). Electrospun SF mats were modified with interpenetrating polymer networks (IPN) of PEDOT:PSS in various ratios of PSS/EDOT (α) and the polymerization was assessed by hard X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (HAXPES). The mechanical properties of electrospun SF and IPNs mats were characterized by the wet state tensile and the electrical properties were examined by cyclic voltammetry (CV) and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The cytotoxicity and biocompatibility of the optimal IPNs (α = 2.3 and 3.3) mats were ascertained via the growth and neurite extension of mouse neuroblastoma x rat glioma hybrid cells (NG108-15) for 7 days. The longest neurite outgrowth of 300 μm was observed in the parallel direction of fibre alignment on laminin-coated electrospun SF and IPN (α = 2.3) mats which is the material with the lowest electron transfer resistance (Ret, ca. 330 Ω). These electrically conductive composites with aligned sub-micron fibres exhibit promise for axon guidance and also has the potential to be combined with electrical stimulation treatment as a further step for the effective regeneration of nerves.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Biomaterials Advances
Additional Information:
This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Biomaterials Advances. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Biomaterials Advances, Vol., pages, 2022 DOI: 10.1016/j.bioadv.2022.213094
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30 Aug 2022 09:25
Last Modified:
14 Sep 2022 10:05