Evaluation of glycerylphytate crosslinked semi-and interpenetrated polymer membranes of hyaluronic acid and chitosan for tissue engineering

In the present study, semi-and interpenetrated polymer network (IPN) systems based on hyaluronic acid (HA) and chitosan using ionic crosslinking of chitosan with a bioactive crosslinker, glycerylphytate (G1Phy), and UV irradiation of methacrylate were developed, characterized and evaluated as potential supports for tissue engineering. Semi-and IPN systems showed significant differences between them regarding composition, morphology, and mechanical properties after physicochemical characterization. Dual crosslinking process of IPN systems enhanced HA retention and mechanical properties, providing also flatter and denser surfaces in comparison to semi-IPN membranes. The biological performance was evaluated on primary human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) and the systems revealed no cytotoxic effect. The excellent biocompatibility of the systems was demonstrated by large spreading areas of hMSCs on hydrogel membrane surfaces. Cell proliferation increased over time for all the systems, being significantly enhanced in the semi-IPN, which suggested that these polymeric membranes could be proposed as an effective promoter system of tissue repair. In this sense, the developed crosslinked biomimetic and biodegradable membranes can provide a stable and amenable environment for hMSCs support and growth with potential applications in the biomedical field.

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