H. Skaat;O. Ziv-Polat;A. Shahar;S. Margel, Enhancement of the Growth and Differentiation of Nasal Olfactory Mucosa Cells by the Conjugation of Growth Factors to Functional Nanoparticles
Growth factors are critical components in the tissue engineering approach. Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), a representative growth factor, stimulates the cellular functions of various cells and has been used extensively for the repair and regeneration of tissues. The in vivo half-life time of free bFGF is short, about 3-10 min, due to rapid enzymatic degradation. Stabilization of the bFGF was accomplished by the covalent or physical conjugation of this factor to fluorescent maghemite (gamma-Fe(2)O(3)) nanoparticles. In the present study, nasal olfactory mucosa (NOM) cells from adult rats were cultured in suspension on chitosan microcarriers (MCs) in the presence of the nonconjugated or bFGF-conjugated nanoparticles, or the free factor. The floating cells/nonconjugated, conjugated, or free bFGF/MCs aggregates were then seeded in a viscous gel. In this manuscript, we are the first to report that the stabilization of the factor by its conjugation to these nanoparticles significantly improved NOM cell-proliferation properties (migration, growth, and differentiation), compared to the same concentration, or even five times higher, of the free factor. This novel approach may significantly contribute to the advancement of the tissue engineering field.