Modulation of gene expression using electrospun scaffolds with templated architecture


  • How to cite this article: Karchin A, Wang Y-N., Sanders JE. 2012. Modulation of gene expression using electrospun scaffolds with templated architecture. J Biomed Mater Res Part A 2012:100A:1605–1614.


The fabrication of biomimetic scaffolds is a critical component to fulfill the promise of functional tissue-engineered materials. We describe herein a simple technique, based on printed circuit board manufacturing, to produce novel templates for electrospinning scaffolds for tissue-engineering applications. This technique facilitates fabrication of electrospun scaffolds with templated architecture, which we defined as a scaffold's bulk mechanical properties being driven by its fiber architecture. Electrospun scaffolds with templated architectures were characterized with regard to fiber alignment and mechanical properties. Fast Fourier transform analysis revealed a high degree of fiber alignment along the conducting traces of the templates. Mechanical testing showed that scaffolds demonstrated tunable mechanical properties as a function of templated architecture. Fibroblast-seeded scaffolds were subjected to a peak strain of 3 or 10% at 0.5 Hz for 1 h. Exposing seeded scaffolds to the low strain magnitude (3%) significantly increased collagen I gene expression compared to the high strain magnitude (10%) in a scaffold architecture-dependent manner. These experiments indicate that scaffolds with templated architectures can be produced, and modulation of gene expression is possible with templated architectures. This technology holds promise for the long-term goal of creating tissue-engineered replacements with the biomechanical and biochemical make-up of native tissues. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A: 2012.