While several scaffolds have been proposed for skeletal muscle regeneration, multiscale hierarchical scaffolds with the complexity of extracellular matrix (ECM) haven’t been engineered successfully. By precise control over nano- and microscale features, comprehensive understanding of the effect of multiple factors on skeletal muscle regeneration can be derived. In this study, we engineered carbon-based scaffolds with hierarchical nano- and microscale architecture with controlled physico-chemical properties. More specifically, we built multiscale hierarchy by growing carbon nanotube (CNT) carpets on two types of scaffolds, namely, interconnected microporous carbon foams and aligned carbon fiber mats. Nanostructured CNT carpets offered fine control over nano-roughness and wettability facilitating myoblast adhesion, growth and differentiation into myocytes. However, microporous foam architecture failed to promote their fusion into multinucleated myotubes. On the other hand, aligned fibrous architecture stimulated formation of multinucleated myotubes. Most importantly, nanostructured CNT carpets interfaced with microscale aligned fibrous architecture significantly enhanced myocyte fusion into multinucleated mature myotubes highlighting synergy between nanoscale surface features and micro-/macroscale aligned fibrous architecture in the process of myogenesis.
Karumuri, A. K.,
Mukhopadhyay, S. M.,
& Sant, S.
(2016). Carbon-Based Hierarchical Scaffolds for Myoblast Differentiation: Synergy between Nano-Functionalization and Alignment. Acta Biomaterialia, 32, 77-88.