SCAFFOLDS PRODUCED OF RECOMBINANT SPIDER SILK PROTEINS FOR TISSUE ENGINEERING
Tamara Bernadette Aigner, Stefanie Wohlrab, Kristin Schacht, Elise Desimone, Thomas Scheibel
Universitaet Bayreuth, Germany
Spider silk is an excellent material for biomedical applications as it is biocompatible, biodegradable and hypoallergenic. In order to provide consistent and reproducible material qualities, a biotechnological approach for the production of recombinant spider silk proteins has been developed using E. coli. Materials made of recombinantly produced spider silk protein eADF4(C16) (engineered Araneus diadematus fibroin 4) display low adhesion and proliferation properties when tested in presence of different cell lines such as mouse fibroblasts (BALB/3T3). These limitations were overcome by the genetic introduction of the integrin recognition sequence RGD into eADF4(C16). This resulted in a significant improvement in cell attachment and proliferation on spider silk films and hydrogels. Furthermore, structured eADF4(C16)-based scaffolds promoted directional growth in addition to enhanced cell attachment even in the absence of the RGDdomain. Another approach used non-woven meshes of eADF4(C16) to provide a topographic surface for fibroblasts allowing their adhesion and proliferation. Building on these designed genetic and morphological features, new approaches can be investigated to control cell interactions.