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Open Access Control of Olfactory Ensheathing Cell Behaviors by Electrospun Silk Fibroin Fibers

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Olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs), the only glial cell type that normally penetrates the transition zone between the peripheral and central nervous systems, are one of the most promising candidates for cell transplantation in repairing spinal cord injury (SCI). However, we must manipulate and regulate OECs’ behavior to make these cells effective in cell transplantation. In the present study, we assessed the response of rat OECs to different variants of nanofibrous silk fibroin mats with regard to cell morphology, adhesion, proliferation, and migration and the related gene and protein expression. Results showed that OECs adhere and spread more easily on Tussah silk fibroin (TSF) fibers than Bombyx mori silk fibroin fibers, resulting in a higher rate of cell proliferation and gene and protein expression, examined by RT-PCR and ELISA. In addition, the morphology of OECs on microfibers is mainly polygonal with short protrusions, whereas the OECs on nanofibers exhibit a bipolar shape with long protrusions that align along the fibers, especially when aligned fibers are employed. Moreover, OECs on silk fibroin nanofibers migrate more efficiently than those on poly-L-lysine (PLL). Based on the experimental results, the morphology, adhesion, spread, gene and protein expression, and migration of OECs could be modulated and regulated by adjusting the contents and structure of silk fibroin nanofibers, shedding light on the control of OECs’ behavior in nerve tissue engineering and thus the future therapeutic intervention for nerve repair after injury. This manuscript is published as part of the International Association of Neurorestoratology (IANR) supplement issue of Cell Transplantation.
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Keywords: Alignment; Bombyx mori silk fibroin (BSF); Electrospun fibers; Fiber diameter; Olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs); Tussah silk fibroin (TSF)

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 17 December 2013

More about this publication?
  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.

    Cell Transplantation is now being published by SAGE. Please visit their website for the most recent issues.

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