Alginate and DNA gels are suitable delivery systems for diabetic wound healing

Ana Tellechea, Eduardo Silva, Jianghong Min, Ermelindo C. Leal, Michael E. Auster, Leena Pradhan-Nabzdyk, William Shih, David J. Mooney, Aristidis Veves

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Diabetic foot ulcers (DFU) represent a severe health problem and an unmet clinical challenge. In this study, we tested the efficacy of novel biomaterials in improving wound healing in mouse models of diabetes mellitus (DM). The biomaterials are composed of alginate- and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA)-based gels that allow incorporation of effector cells, such as outgrowth endothelial cells (OEC), and provide sustained release of bioactive factors, such as neuropeptides and growth factors, which have been previously validated in experimental models of DM wound healing or hind limb ischemia. We tested these biomaterials in mice and demonstrate that they are biocompatible and can be injected into the wound margins without major adverse effects. In addition, we show that the combination of OEC and the neuropeptide Substance P has a better healing outcome than the delivery of OEC alone, while subtherapeutic doses of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) are required for the transplanted cells to exert their beneficial effects in wound healing. In summary, alginate and DNA scaffolds could serve as potential delivery systems for the next-generation DFU therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)146-153
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Lower Extremity Wounds
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015


  • biomaterials
  • diabetic foot ulcers
  • endothelial precursor cells
  • neuropeptides
  • wound healing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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