Stem cell-based neural tissue engineering through the use of biomaterials.

Lead Research Organisation: University of Glasgow
Department Name: School of Engineering


There is an urgent unmet clinical need for scaffolds that actively promote the
regeneration of neural tissue. This project will aim to develop a novel, 3D degradable scaffold
with controlled mechanical and chemical properties, recapitulating the natural extracellular
microenvironment and releasing growth factors (GFs) in a controlled spatiotemporal manner.
The scaffold will be based on Poly(ethylene) glycol and extracellular matrix proteins, such as
laminin and fibronectin, presenting high affinity for GFs and therefore required to support the
regenerative process. The scaffolds will thus represent a synthetic microenvironment where
neural stem cells can be cultured in 3D and differentiated through mechanical and chemical
queues to replace lost neurons and surrounding glia. The development of an organotypic culture
of tissue-specific stem cells in a hydrogel will provide a viable vector for delivering new cells and
growth promoting factors to an injury site. Furthermore, this culture model could potentially
have future applications for screening drugs that could enhance neural tissue regeneration by
stimulating the expansion of the stem cells in culture.


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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/R513222/1 01/10/2018 30/09/2023
2302243 Studentship EP/R513222/1 04/11/2019 07/10/2023 Mariana Azevedo Gonzalez Oliva