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Keywords:

  • smooth muscle cells;
  • alignment;
  • parallel fibers;
  • elastin;
  • electrospinning

Abstract

We generated parallel elastic fibers from synthetic elastin (SE) as a model of the arterial media and assessed the alignment of smooth muscle cells (SMCs). SE utilized crosslinked electrospun human tropoelastin to form aligned fibers that mimicked the topography and elastin-rich content of the medial extracellular matrix. Bundled parallel fibers were anisotropically more elastic than randomly arranged scaffolds (111 ± 25 kPa vs. 265 ± 17 kPa) in the direction of the fibers. Aligned and random fiber scaffolds each supported SMC growth. Following attachment, SMCs proliferated longitudinally on the parallel fibers and expressed native α-smooth muscle actin. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A, 2012.