The promotion of functional urinary bladder regeneration using anti-inflammatory nanofibers

Bury, M. I.; Fuller, N. J.; Meisner, J. W.; Hofer, M. D.; Webber, M. J.; Chow, L. W.; Prasad, S.; Thaker, H.; Yue, X.; Menon, V. S.; Diaz, E. C.; Stupp, S. I.; Cheng, E. Y.; Sharma, A. K.

Biomaterials. 2014 Aug 26; 35(34):9311-21


Current attempts at tissue regeneration utilizing synthetic and decellularized biologic-based materials have typically been met in part by innate immune responses in the form of a robust inflammatory reaction at the site of implantation or grafting. This can ultimately lead to tissue fibrosis with direct negative impact on tissue growth, development, and function. In order to temper the innate inflammatory response, anti-inflammatory signals were incorporated through display on self-assembling peptide nanofibers to promote tissue healing and subsequent graft compliance throughout the regenerative process. Utilizing an established urinary bladder augmentation model, the highly pro-inflammatory biologic scaffold (decellularized small intestinal submucosa) was treated with anti-inflammatory peptide amphiphiles (AIF-PAs) or control peptide amphiphiles and used for augmentation. Significant regenerative advantages of the AIF-PAs were observed including potent angiogenic responses, limited tissue collagen accumulation, and the modulation of macrophage and neutrophil responses in regenerated bladder tissue. Upon further characterization, a reduction in the levels of M2 macrophages was observed, but not in M1 macrophages in control groups, while treatment groups exhibited decreased levels of M1 macrophages and stabilized levels of M2 macrophages. Pro-inflammatory cytokine production was decreased while anti-inflammatory cytokines were up-regulated in treatment groups. This resulted in far fewer incidences of tissue granuloma and bladder stone formation. Finally, functional urinary bladder testing revealed greater bladder compliance and similar capacities in groups treated with AIF-PAs. Data demonstrate that AIF-PAs can alleviate galvanic innate immune responses and provide a highly conducive regenerative milieu that may be applicable in a variety of clinical settings.

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