(624g) Novel Bio-Ionic Liquid Functionalized Conductive Hydrogel for Cardiac Tissue Regeneration
Here, we introduce a new class of conductive polymer-based biomaterials through conductive bio-ionic liquid (BIL) functionalization of different biopolymers. BIL are low melting organic salts that exhibit several technical advantages, including low volatility, high ionic conductivity and electrochemical stability, and excellent dissolution capabilities. BILs have been previously used as biocompatible and biodegradable materials for various applications such as cancer therapy, multi-responsive drug delivery systems, sensors, batteries, and biomedical implants [2-5]. Functionalization of biopolymers with BIL can provide conductive properties to the polymer networks, while preserving the biological and physical characteristics of the biopolymers. This property makes them unique candidates for various tissue-engineering applications. We performed chemical conjugation of BIL to various synthetic and natural polymers including gelatin, tropoelastin, elastin like polypeptides (ELP), collagen, poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG), hyaluronic acid (HA), poly(glycerol sebacate) polymer (PGS) and combinations of them, in order to generate conductive biomaterials with high biocompatibility and tunable physical and electrical properties. For example, we engineered a novel 3D gelatin-based hydrogel by using a visible light-activated gelatin prepolymer, functionalized with a BIL for heart tissue regeneration. FTIR and NMR analysis confirmed the successful functionalization of BIL to the biopolymer structure. The mechanical and electrical properties of the engineered hydrogel were then optimized to mimic the properties of the native heart tissue. Our in vitro tests confirmed that the engineered conductive scaffolds provide a suitable conductive and mechanical substratum for the culture of cardiac cells. This led to the formation of 3D functional cardiac patches, which can potentially be used for heart tissue regeneration.
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