Modulation of Mesenchymal Stem Cell Migration using Programmable Polymer Sheet Actuators


Recruitment of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) to damaged tissue is a crucial step to modulate tissue regeneration. Here, the migration of human adipose-derived stem cells (hADSCs) responding to thermal and mechanical stimuli was investigated using programmable shape-memory polymer actuator (SMPA) sheets. Changing the temperature repetitively between 10 and 37 °C, the SMPA sheets are capable of reversibly changing between two different pre-defined shapes like an artificial muscle. Compared to non-actuating sheets, the cells cultured on the programmed actuating sheets presented a higher migration velocity (0.32 ± 0.1 vs. 0.57 ± 0.2 μm/min). These results could motivate the next scientific steps, for example, to investigate the MSCs pre-loaded in organoids towards their migration potential.
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