Tissue Regeneration Through Self-Assembled Peptide Amphiphile Nanofibers

Document Type : Original Article


1 International Center for Young Scientists, National Institute for Materials Science, Nano and Biomaterials Research Building, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, JAPAN

2 Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, Graduate School of Medicine, Kyoto University Hospital, Kyoto, JAPAN

3 Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA, USA

4 Medicine Department, Center for Biomedical Engineering, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Cambridge, MA, USA


Introduction: In the present study, we hypothesized that a novel approach to promote vascularization would be to create injectable three dimensional (3-D) scaffolds within growth factor that enhance the sustained release of growth factor and induce the angiogenesis.
Material and Methods: We demonstrate that a 3-D scaffold can be formed by mixing of peptide-amphiphile (PA) aqueous solution with hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) solution. PA was synthesized by standard solid phase chemistry that ends with the alkylation of the NH2 terminus of the peptide. The sequence of arginine-glycineaspartic acid (RGD) was included in peptide design as well. A 3-D network of nanofibers was formed by mixing HGF suspensions with dilute aqueous solution of PA.
Results: Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) examination revealed the formation of fibrous assemblies with an extremely high aspect ratio and high surface areas with mean diameter of less than 200 nm. In vitro HGF release profile of 3-D nanofibers was investigated while angiogenesis induced by the released HGF was being assessed. In vivo potential ability of PA nanofibers to induce angiogenesis was assessed through subcutaneous injection of PA solution, HGF solution, and PA in combination with HGF solutions. Injection of PA with HGF induced significant angiogenesis around the injected site, in marked contrast to HGF injection alone and PA injection alone.
Conclusion: The combination of HGF-induced angiogenesis is a promising procedure to improve tissue regeneration.