Orientational behaviors of silk fibroin hydrogels

last updated: 2018-02-21
ProjectFoReCaST :: publications list
TitleOrientational behaviors of silk fibroin hydrogels
Publication TypePapers in Scientific Journals
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsChen D., Yin Z., Wu F., Fu H., Kundu S. C., and Lu S.

In this study, a novel shear-induced silk fibroin hydrogel with three-dimensional (3D) anisotropic and oriented gel skeleton/network morphology is presented. Amphipathic anionic and nontoxic sodium surfactin is blended with the silk fibroin to decrease its gelation time during the mechanical shearing process. The fibroin/surfactin blended solutions undergo a facial shearing process to accomplish a sol–gel transition within one hour. The dynamic sol–gel transition kinetic analysis, gel skeleton/network morphology,
and mechanical property measurements are determined in order to visualize the fibroin/surfactin sol–gel transition during the shearing process and its resulting hydrogel. The results demonstrate that there is significant b-sheet assembly from random coil conformations in the fibroin/surfactin blended system during the facile shearing process. The silk fibroin b-sheets further transform into a fibrous large-scale aggregation with orientational and parallel arrangements to the shearing direction. The shear-induced fibroin/
surfactin hydrogel exhibits notable anisotropic and oriented 3D skeleton/network morphology and a significant mechanical compressive strength in proportion to the shearing stress, compared with the control fibroin/surfactin hydrogel undergoing no shearing process. Due to its oriented gel skeleton/network structure and significantly enhanced mechanical properties, the shear-induced fibroin/ surfactin gel may be suitable as a biomaterial in 3D oriented tissue regeneration, including for nerves, the cultivation of bone cells, and the repair of defects in muscle and ligament tissues.

JournalJournal Of Applied Polymer Science
Date Published2017-05-02
KeywordsBiomaterials, gels, Mechanical Properties, structure–property relationships
Peer reviewedyes

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