Exploration and Optimization of Biomaterials and Cells Required for the Fabrication of a “Cardiac Patch”

Shweta Anil Kumar, University of Texas at El Paso


Cardiac failure induced by myocardial infarction is believed to be one of the primary causes of morbidity and mortality all over the world. Affecting more than 26 million people worldwide, its prevalence has been observed to increase steadily. Myocardial infarction, which intitially begins as the occlusion of of a coronary artery, results in the death of millions of cardiomyocytes by obstructing blood flow to the serviced regions of the myocardium. The dead myocardium is replaced by a dense,collagenous scar which reduces the contractility of the heart, gradually leading to heart attacks. Most of the existing treatment therapies are palliative in nature and while slowing down the progression of the disease, have not been successful in regenerating the cardiac tissue that has sustained injury following myocardial infarction primarily due to the limited regenerative ability of the cardiac cells. This has become a major cause of concern and has prompted researchers and scientists all over the world to investigate other forms of treatment such as stem cell therapy and tissue engineering to reverse the effects of myocardial infarction-induced cardiac cell death in an effort to restore the functional ability of the heart. This dissertation explores the feasibility of tissue engineering “cardiac patches” via extrusion based 3D bioprinting technology by combining biomaterials, cells and other soluble factors. This study is novel since we employed furfuryl-gelatin, which is a visible light crosslinkable derivative of porcine gelatin, as the base material for our bioink in tandem with fibrinogen to generate cardiomyocyte-laden scaffolds which exhibited high cell viability and retention, in addition to possessing mechanical properties resembling those of the native myocardium. The outcomes of our experiments show that there is great promise in adopting the fibrin-gelatin based bioinks, specifically for the fabrication of cardiac tissues, and can potentially open up new avenues in the field of regenerative medicine if adopted into clinical trials.

Subject Area

Materials science|Bioengineering

Recommended Citation

Anil Kumar, Shweta, "Exploration and Optimization of Biomaterials and Cells Required for the Fabrication of a “Cardiac Patch”" (2019). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI27668135.