New Paper Published on Injectable Nanocellulose Composites for Intervertebral Disk Regeneration

Diana Pereira's paper, published in Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology and Medicine reports on a injectable nanocomposite for annulus fibrosus (AF) regeneration. The present strategy proposes a gellan gum-based construct reinforced with cellulose nanocrystals as a biological self-gelling AF substitute. Nanocomposite hydrogels were fabricated and characterized for their swelling capacity and stability and physico-chemical properties. Rheological evaluation on the nanocomposites demonstrated the GGMA reinforcement with nCell and thus matrix entanglements with higher stiffness upon ionic crosslinking. Compressive mechanical tests demonstrate values close to those of the human AF tissue. Furthermore, cell culture studies by means of gel loading with bovine AF cells indicated that the construct promoted cell viability and a physiologically relevant morphology for up to fourteen days in vitro.