Koppes and Bencherif Published in Bioelectricity
ChE Assistant Professors Ryan Koppes and Sidi A. Bencherif were published in Bioelectricity for their research on “Electroconductive Hydrogels for Tissue Engineering: Current Status and Future Perspectives.”
Over the past decade, electroconductive hydrogels, integrating both the biomimetic attributes of hydrogels and the electrochemical properties of conductive materials, have gained significant attention. Hydrogels, three-dimensional and swollen hydrophilic polymer networks, are an important class of tissue engineering (TE) scaffolds owing to their microstructural and mechanical properties, ability to mimic the native extracellular matrix, and promote tissue repair. However, hydrogels are intrinsically insulating and therefore unable to emulate the complex electrophysiological microenvironment of cardiac and neural tissues. To overcome this challenge, electroconductive materials, including carbon-based materials, nanoparticles, and polymers, have been incorporated within nonconductive hydrogels to replicate the electrical and biological characteristics of biological tissues. This review gives a brief introduction on the rational design of electroconductive hydrogels and their current applications in TE, especially for neural and cardiac regeneration. The recent progress and development trends of electroconductive hydrogels, their challenges, and clinical translatability, as well as their future perspectives, with a focus on advanced manufacturing technologies, are also discussed.