3 years ago

Effects of free radical initiators on polyethylene glycol dimethacrylate hydrogel properties and biocompatibility

Laura A. Smith Callahan, Yuki E. Kurosu, Hyun Ju Lim, Zara Khan, Xi Lu, Thomas S. Wilems
Many studies have utilized Irgacure 2959 photopolymerized poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) hydrogels for tissue engineering application development. Due to the limited penetration of ultraviolet light through tissue, Irgacure 2959 polymerized hydrogels are not suitable for use in tissues where material injection is desirable, such as the spinal cord. To address this, several free radical initiators (thermal initiator VA044, ammonium persulfate (APS)/TEMED reduction–oxidation reaction, and Fenton chemistry) are evaluated for their effects on the material and mechanical properties of PEG hydrogels compared with Irgacure 2959. To emulate the effects of endogenous thiols on in vivo polymerization, the effects of chain transfer agent (CTA) dithiothreitol on gelation rates, material properties, Young's and shear modulus, are examined. Mouse embryonic stem cells and human induced pluripotent stem cell derived neural stem cells were used to investigate the cytocompatibility of each polymerization. VA044 and Fenton chemistry polymerization of PEG hydrogels both had gelation rates and mechanical properties that were highly susceptible to changes in CTA concentration and showed poor cytocompatibility. APS/TEMED polymerized hydrogels maintained consistent gelation rates and mechanical properties at high CTA concentration and had a similar cytocompatibility as Irgacure 2959 when cells were encapsulated within the PEG hydrogels. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A, 2017.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/jbm.a.36160

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