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Topographic Cue from Electrospun Scaffolds Regulate Myelin-Related Gene Expressions in Schwann Cells

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Matured Schwann cells play a vital role in promoting regeneration and restoration of functional peripheral nervous tissue. In the present study, two dimensional film, three dimensional random and longitudinally aligned electrospun fibers of poly(lactide-co-glycolide) were used to evaluate the effect of topography on expressions of myelin related genes. The aligned nanofibrous scaffold demonstrated significant increase in Schwann cell adhesion using after 3, 6 and 12 hours of culture compared to the film and random fibers. Cell morphology, degree of orientation and elongation factor evaluated using a scanning electron microscope revealed that cells on aligned scaffold have spindle morphology, whereas cells on random and two dimensional films favor spherical morphology confirming the effect of topography. Significant increase in elongation factor was observed in aligned scaffold as compared to film and random fibers (p < 0.05). The gene expression analysis revealed that aligned scaffold significantly up-regulated the expression of early myelination markers: myelin-associated glycoprotein and myelin protein zero, cell adhesion molecule: neural cadherin, extracellular matrix molecule: neurocan, as well the down-regulation of non-myelinating Schwann cell marker: neural cell adhesion molecule when compared to random and film (p < 0.05). The gene expression patterns of aligned fibers favor myelination of Schwann cells when compared to film and random fibers. Thus, our results demonstrate that the aligned topography of the scaffold promotes maturation of Schwann cells and thereby its myelination to maintain its functionality.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2015

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  • Journal of Biomedical Nanotechnology (JBN) is a peer-reviewed multidisciplinary journal providing broad coverage in all research areas focused on the applications of nanotechnology in medicine, drug delivery systems, infectious disease, biomedical sciences, biotechnology, and all other related fields of life sciences.
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