“Like fishermen, Rice University bioengineers are angling for their daily catch. But their bait, biomolecules in a hydrogel scaffold, lures microscopic stem cells instead of fish.
These, they say, will seed the growth of new tissue to heal wounds.
The team led by Brown School of Engineering bioengineer Antonios Mikos and graduate student Jason Guo have developed modular, injectable hydrogels enhanced by bioactive molecules anchored in the chemical crosslinkers that give the gels structure.
Hydrogels for healing have until now been biologically inert and require growth factors and other biocompatible molecules to be added to the mix. The new process makes these essential molecules part of the hydrogel itself, specifically…”