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Biomaterials for regenerative therapy

Working Group Pepelanova

Implants are frequently used in biomedicine for the functional support of an ailing organ or tissue. They can be produced from different materials and can be roughly classified according to their composition into solid implants or soft tissue implants.

In clinical practice, complications such as rejection and inflammation are frequently associated with the use of implants. Therefore, material scientists strive to develop improved materials for biomedical applications. For example, these materials can be used as coatings for solid implants or as constituents of scaffolds in tissue implants, in accordance with the tissue engineering paradigm.

There are multiple requirements placed on implant materials: they should be biocompatible and do not cause allergic or inflammatory response in the body. In addition, the materials should ideally degrade in the patient’s body, while regenerating new tissue which supports its own function. The proteins from the extracellular matrix (ECM) are a class of materials which naturally possess the properties we are seeking in implant materials. Therefore, we employ these proteins as an inspiration basis for the development of novel materials for biomedical applications.