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Title: Tunable Human Myocardium Derived Decellularized Extracellular Matrix for 3D Bioprinting and Cardiac Tissue Engineering
The generation of 3D tissue constructs with multiple cell types and matching mechanical properties remains a challenge in cardiac tissue engineering. Recently, 3D bioprinting has become a powerful tool to achieve these goals. Decellularized extracellular matrix (dECM) is a common scaffold material due to providing a native biochemical environment. Unfortunately, dECM’s low mechanical stability prevents usage for bioprinting applications alone. In this study, we developed bioinks composed of decellularized human heart ECM (dhECM) with either gelatin methacryloyl (GelMA) or GelMA-methacrylated hyaluronic acid (MeHA) hydrogels dual crosslinked with UV light and microbial transglutaminase (mTGase). We characterized the bioinks’ mechanical, rheological, swelling, printability, and biocompatibility properties. Composite GelMA–MeHA–dhECM (GME) hydrogels demonstrated improved mechanical properties by an order of magnitude compared to the GelMA–dhECM (GE) hydrogels. All hydrogels were extrudable and compatible with human induced pluripotent stem cell derived cardiomyocytes (iCMs) and human cardiac fibroblasts (hCFs). Tissue-like beating of the printed constructs with striated sarcomeric alpha-actinin and connexin 43 expression was observed. The order of magnitude difference between the elastic modulus of these hydrogel composites offers applications in in vitro modeling of the myocardial infarct boundary. Here, as a proof of concept, we created an infarct boundary region with control over the mechanical more » properties along with the cellular and macromolecular content through printing iCMs with GE bioink and hCFs with GME bioink. « less
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National Science Foundation
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