Matrix stiffness modulates the differentiation of neural crest stem cells in vivo

Yiqian Zhu, Xian Li, Randall Raphael R. Janairo, George Kwong, Anchi D. Tsou, Julia S. Chu, Aijun Wang, Jian Yu, Dong Wang, Song Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Stem cells are often transplanted with scaffolds for tissue regeneration; however, how the mechanical property of a scaffold modulates stem cell fate in vivo is not well understood. Here we investigated how matrix stiffness modulates stem cell differentiation in a model of vascular graft transplantation. Multipotent neural crest stem cells (NCSCs) were differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells, embedded in the hydrogel on the outer surface of nanofibrous polymer grafts, and implanted into rat carotid arteries by anastomosis. After 3 months, NCSCs differentiated into smooth muscle cells (SMCs) near the outer surface of the polymer grafts; in contrast, NCSCs differentiated into glial cells in the most part of the hydrogel. Atomic force microscopy demonstrated a stiffer matrix near the polymer surface but much lower stiffness away from the polymer graft. Consistently, in vitro studies confirmed that stiff surface induced SMC genes whereas soft surface induced glial genes. These results suggest that the scaffold’s mechanical properties play an important role in directing stem cell differentiation in vivo, which has important implications in biomaterials design for stem cell delivery and tissue engineering.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Cellular Physiology
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

Fingerprint

Neural Stem Cells
Neural Crest
Stiffness matrix
Stem cells
Stem Cells
Polymers
Transplants
Hydrogel
Neuroglia
Graft copolymers
Smooth Muscle Myocytes
Cell Differentiation
Multipotent Stem Cells
Tissue Scaffolds
Cell Engineering
Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells
Atomic Force Microscopy
Biocompatible Materials
Scaffolds
Tissue Engineering

Keywords

  • glial cells
  • matrix stiffness
  • nanofibrous scaffold
  • neural crest stem cells
  • smooth muscle cells
  • vascular tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology

Cite this

Zhu, Y., Li, X., Janairo, R. R. R., Kwong, G., Tsou, A. D., Chu, J. S., ... Li, S. (Accepted/In press). Matrix stiffness modulates the differentiation of neural crest stem cells in vivo. Journal of Cellular Physiology. https://doi.org/10.1002/jcp.27518

Matrix stiffness modulates the differentiation of neural crest stem cells in vivo. / Zhu, Yiqian; Li, Xian; Janairo, Randall Raphael R.; Kwong, George; Tsou, Anchi D.; Chu, Julia S.; Wang, Aijun; Yu, Jian; Wang, Dong; Li, Song.

In: Journal of Cellular Physiology, 01.01.2018.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zhu, Yiqian ; Li, Xian ; Janairo, Randall Raphael R. ; Kwong, George ; Tsou, Anchi D. ; Chu, Julia S. ; Wang, Aijun ; Yu, Jian ; Wang, Dong ; Li, Song. / Matrix stiffness modulates the differentiation of neural crest stem cells in vivo. In: Journal of Cellular Physiology. 2018.
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