Chitosan Poly(vinyl alcohol) Methacrylate Hydrogels for Tissue Engineering Scaffolds

Nghia Le Ba Thai, Henry T. Beaman, Megan Perlman, Ernest E. Obeng, Changling Du, Mary Beth B. Monroe

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


A major challenge in tissue engineering scaffolds is controlling scaffold degradation rates during healing while maintaining mechanical properties to support tissue formation. Hydrogels are three-dimensional matrices that are widely applied as tissue scaffolds based on their unique properties that can mimic the extracellular matrix. In this study, we develop a hybrid natural/synthetic hydrogel platform to tune the properties for tissue engineering scaffold applications. We modified chitosan and poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) with photo-cross-linkable methacrylate functional groups and then synthesized a library of chitosan PVA methacrylate hydrogels (ChiPVAMA) with two different photoinitiators, Irgacure 2959 (I2959) and lithium phenyl-2,4,6-trimethylbenzoylphosphinate (LAP). ChiPVAMA hydrogels showed tunability in degradation rates and mechanical properties based on both the polymer content and photoinitiator type. This tunability could enable their application in a range of tissue scaffold applications. In a 2D scratch wound healing assay, all hydrogel samples induced faster wound closure compared to a gauze clinical wound dressing control. NIH/3T3 cells encapsulated in hydrogels showed a high viability (∼92%) over 14 days, demonstrating the capacity of this system as a supportive cell scaffold. In addition, hydrogels containing a higher chitosan content demonstrated a high antibacterial capacity. Overall, ChiPVAMA hydrogels provide a potential tissue engineering scaffold that is tunable, degradable, and suitable for cell growth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalACS Applied Bio Materials
StateAccepted/In press - 2023


  • Antimicrobial
  • Chitosan
  • Cytocompatbility
  • Hydrogels
  • Poly(vinyl alcohol)
  • Tissue Engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • General Chemistry
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Biochemistry, medical


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