Optimization of polycaprolactone fibrous scaffold for heart valve tissue engineering

Soumen Jana, Amrita Bhagia, Amir Lerman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Pore size is generally small in nanofibrous scaffolds prepared by electrospinning polymeric solutions. Increase of scaffold thickness leads to decrease in pore size, causing impediment to cell infiltration into the scaffolds during tissue engineering. In contrast, comparatively larger pore size can be realized in microfibrous scaffolds prepared from polymeric solutions at higher concentrations. Further, microfibrous scaffolds are conducive to infiltration of reparativeM2phenotype macrophages during in vivo/in situ tissue engineering. However, rise of mechanical properties of a fibrous scaffold with the increase of polymer concentration may limit the functionality of a scaffold-based, tissue-engineered heart valve. In this study, we developed microfibrous scaffolds from 14%, 16% and 18% (wt/v) polycaprolactone (PCL) polymer solutions prepared with chloroform solvent. Porcine valvular interstitial cells were cultured in the scaffolds for 14 d to investigate the effect of microfibers prepared with different PCL concentrations on the seeded cells. Further, fresh microfibrous scaffolds were implanted subcutaneously in a rat model for two months to investigate the effect of microfibers on infiltrated cells. Cell proliferation, and its morphologies, gene expression and deposition of different extracellular matrix proteins in the in vitro study were characterized. During the in vivo study, we characterized cell infiltration, and myofibroblast andM1/M2phenotypes expression of the infiltrated cells. Among different PCL concentrations, microfibrous scaffolds from 14% solution were suitable for heart valve tissue engineering for their sufficient pore size and low but adequate tensile properties, which promoted cell adhesion to and proliferation in the scaffolds, and effective gene expression and extracellular matrix deposition by the cells in vitro. They also encouraged the cells in vivo for their infiltration and effective gene expression, includingM2phenotype expression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number065014
JournalBiomedical Materials (Bristol)
Issue number6
StatePublished - Oct 8 2019


  • Cardiac valve leaflet
  • Microfiber
  • Polycaprolactone
  • Tissue engineering
  • Valvular interstitial cell

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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