18.5. Biomaterials as Vehicles for Stem Cells or Bioactive Molecule Delivery

18.5.1. Stem Cell Delivery

The use of biomaterials as a platform or vehicle for cell delivery into the infarcted myocardium can potentially reduce or eliminate the obstacles seen in cell suspension transplantation, such as low engraftment, survival, and unpredictable retention (Segers and Lee, 2011). The biomaterials can protect the implanted cells from the aggressive environment after acute MI. With a proper design, the biomaterials can serve as an artificial ECM, to replace the degraded ECM after MI and provide the required temporal support to allow cell engraftment and retention. Using biomaterial scaffolds, thicker cell constructs could be created in vitro, to achieve ...

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