Engineering functional and histological regeneration of vascularized skeletal muscle

Jordana Gilbert-Honick, Shama R. Iyer, Sarah M. Somers, Richard M. Lovering, Kathryn Wagner, Hai Quan Mao, Warren L. Grayson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Tissue engineering strategies to treat patients with volumetric muscle loss (VML) aim to recover the structure and contractile function of lost muscle tissue. Here, we assessed the capacity of novel electrospun fibrin hydrogel scaffolds seeded with murine myoblasts to regenerate the structure and function of damaged muscle within VML defects to the mouse tibialis anterior muscle. The electrospun fibrin scaffolds provide pro-myogenic alignment and stiffness cues, myomimetic hierarchical structure, suturability, and scale-up capabilities. Myoblast-seeded scaffolds enabled remarkable muscle regeneration with high myofiber and vascular densities after 2 and 4 weeks, mimicking that of native skeletal muscle, while acellular scaffolds lacked muscle regeneration. Both myoblast-seeded and acellular scaffolds fully recovered muscle contractile function to uninjured values after 2 and 4 weeks. Electrospun scaffolds pre-vascularized with co-cultured human endothelial cells and human adipose-derived stem cells implanted into VML defects for 2 weeks anastomosed with host vasculature and were perfused with host red blood cells. These data demonstrate the significant potential of electrospun fibrin scaffolds seeded with myoblasts to fully regenerate the structure and function of volumetric muscle defects and these scaffolds offer a promising treatment option for patients with VML.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)70-79
Number of pages10
StatePublished - May 2018


  • Electrospun hydrogels
  • Tissue engineering
  • Vascularized skeletal muscle
  • Volumetric muscle loss

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Biophysics
  • Biomaterials
  • Mechanics of Materials


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