3-Dimensionally Printed, Native-Like Scaffolds for Myocardial Tissue Engineering
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- induced pluripotent stem cells
- printing, three-dimensional
- regenerative medicine
- tissue engineering
Coronary heart disease (CHD) and myocardial infarction (MI) account for ≈1 in 7 deaths in the United States, with an estimated 750 000 incidences of MI in the United States each year.1 Although modern medical therapies have reduced the number of coronary heart disease–related deaths over the past 30 years, there is still much room for improvement in coronary heart disease and MI treatment. As cardiac tissue has limited regenerative capability, damaged myocardial tissue downstream of the blocked vessel in MI remodels to nonfunctional fibrotic scar tissue. Cell and tissue-engineered therapies are a promising therapeutic area that may reduce MI scar formation and induce healthy remodeling of damaged heart tissue by providing cells and matrix materials that can integrate with native tissue to restore normal heart function.
Article, see p 1318
Tissue engineering takes advantage of a wide range of technologies, including stem cell techniques and 3-dimensional (3D) printing, to recapitulate in vivo tissue structure and function in an in vitro setting. The primary focus of tissue engineering research is regenerative medicine applications that aim to implant cells in a biomaterial scaffold into a diseased or injured tissue and thereby restore tissue functionality. To accomplish this, the tissue-engineered construct must be designed to ensure cell survival by either replacing damaged native tissue or being resorbed as new tissue forms, without inducing immunogenicity.
Myocardial tissue engineering is particularly challenging because of the complex nature of the heart’s structure and function. Implanted myocardial tissue constructs should ideally integrate into the surrounding heart tissue both physically and functionally, with implanted cardiomyocytes coupling with neighboring native cells in contraction and electric signal conduction without inducing arrhythmias. However, to functionally couple with native tissue, the cells in the implanted tissue construct must first survive. This has been one of the biggest roadblocks to successful cell …