Injectable hydrogels for cartilage and bone tissue regeneration: A review

Parisa Ghandforoushan 1, Morteza Alehosseini 2, Nasim Golafshan 3, Miguel Castilho 4, Alireza Dolatshahi-Pirouz 5, Jalal Hanaee 6, Soodabeh Davaran 6, Gorka Orive 7

Published: 15 August 2023

Annually, millions of patients suffer from irreversible injury owing to the loss or failure of an organ or tissue caused by accident, aging, or disease. The combination of injectable hydrogels and the science of stem cells have emerged to address this persistent issue in society by generating minimally invasive treatments to augment tissue function. Hydrogels are composed of a cross-linked network of polymers that exhibit a high-water retention capacity, thereby mimicking the wet environment of native cells. Due to their inherent mechanical softness, hydrogels can be used as needle-injectable stem cell carrier materials to mend tissue defects. Hydrogels are made of different natural or synthetic polymers, displaying a broad portfolio of eligible properties, which include biocompatibility, low cytotoxicity, shear-thinning properties as well as tunable biological and physicochemical properties. Presently, novel ongoing developments and native-like hydrogels are increasingly being used broadly to improve the quality of life of those with disabling tissue-related diseases. The present review outlines various future and in-vitro applications of injectable hydrogel-based biomaterials, focusing on the newest ongoing developments of in-situ forming injectable hydrogels for bone and cartilage tissue engineering purposes.

Full Access Link: International Journal of Biological Macromolecules