Enhanced chondrogenic differentiation of dental pulp stem cells using nanopatterned PEG-GelMA-HA hydrogels

Cameron L. Nemeth, Kajohnkiart Janebodin, Alex E. Yuan, James E. Dennis, Morayma Reyes, Deok Ho Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


We have examined the effects of surface nanotopography and hyaluronic acid (HA) on in vitro chondrogenesis of dental pulp stem cells (DPSCs). Ultraviolet-assisted capillary force lithography was employed to fabricate well-defined nanostructured scaffolds of composite PEG-GelMA-HA hydrogels that consist of poly(ethylene glycol) dimethacrylate (PEGDMA), methacrylated gelatin (GelMA), and HA. Using this microengineered platform, we first demonstrated that DPSCs formed three-dimensional spheroids, which provide an appropriate environment for in vitro chondrogenic differentiation. We also found that DPSCs cultured on nanopatterned PEG-GelMA-HA scaffolds showed a significant upregulation of the chondrogenic gene markers (Sox9, Alkaline phosphatase, Aggrecan, Procollagen type II, and Procollagen type X), while downregulating the pluripotent stem cell gene, Nanog, and epithelial-mesenchymal genes (Twist, Snail, Slug) compared with tissue culture polystyrene-cultured DPSCs. Immunocytochemistry showed more extensive deposition of collagen type II in DPSCs cultured on the nanopatterned PEG-GelMA-HA scaffolds. These findings suggest that nanotopography and HA provide important cues for promoting chondrogenic differentiation of DPSCs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2817-2829
Number of pages13
JournalTissue Engineering - Part A
Issue number21-22
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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