Resisting the “number one killer” of health, Tianda has developed “heart-saving” hydrogel

Recently, the team of Professor Li Junjie of Tianjin University successfully developed a new hydrogel, which can effectively inhibit ventricular remodeling, promote vascular regeneration and restore cardiac electrophysiological function, bringing good news to patients with ischemic myocardial infarction. At present, the results have been published in the authoritative journal “Advanced Functional Materials” in the field.

Schematic diagram of the principle of new hydrogel technology Courtesy of Tianjin University

Ischemic heart disease is known as the “number one killer” of human health. Blockage of coronary arteries can induce insufficient blood supply to the myocardium, causing problems in the metabolism of myocardial cells, resulting in the death of cardiomyocytes and affecting the physiological function of the heart. Ischemic heart disease continues to threaten human health, and the incidence group is becoming younger and younger. At present, cardiac tissue engineering experts mainly use conductive hydrogels based on polyethylene dioxythiophene to improve the beating frequency, contraction speed and arrangement structure of cardiomyocytes, but this hydrogel is not conducive to the survival and proliferation of cardiomyocytes, and may even cause severe inflammatory response. Therefore, the development of a new type of hydrogel is of great significance for myocardial repair therapy.

It is reported that the new hydrogel developed by Li Junjie’s team can effectively overcome the defects of poor biocompatibility of traditional conductive hydrogels, have superior cytocompatibility and histocompatibility, and hardly cause inflammation. It is worth mentioning that this new hydrogel also shows mechanical properties and conductivity that match the myocardium, can promote the maturation of cardiomyocytes and the formation of directional sarcomere structure, can regulate the electrodecoupling caused by fibrosis, and prevent the deterioration of infarction. The experimental results show that the new hydrogel can effectively prolong the duration of stem cell therapy and improve cardiac repair function.

“Collaborative mechanical, electrical and bioindexing is the focus of our team’s future research, and excellent biocompatibility and electrobiomimetic design will be the key to achieving better therapeutic outcomes and clinical translation.” Li Junjie said, “We believe that this hydrogel also has potential advantages in other applications such as cardiac muscle repair, skeletal muscle reconstruction, nerve and spinal cord repair. (Source: China Science News, Jiao Defang, Wang Mingchen, Chen Bin)

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