A paper published in Science and Technology of Advanced Materials have shown that a synthetic protein called AGMA1 has the potential to promote the adhesion of brain cells in a laboratory setting. It is also cheaper and easier to produce on a large scale. This could help overcome a major challenge in nerve tissue engineering.
Researchers at the University of Milan in Italy have shown that a synthetic protein called AGMA1 has the potential to promote the adhesion of brain cells in a laboratory setting. This could prove helpful in improving cell adhesiveness to biomaterials.
Isolating nerve cells from their original organism and culturing them in the laboratory has long been used as a method to study brain metabolism. It has been challenging, however, to provide brain cell cultures with the necessary “adhesion promoters” that facilitate cell attachment, spreading, growth and morphological development.
Improving cell adhesion to biomaterials is also a major challenge in nerve tissue engineering and is crucial for the development of implanted neural prostheses, such as cochlear implants, and biosensors, such as blood glucose biosensors.
Coating the surfaces of negatively charged cell membranes with positively charged synthetic proteins promotes nerve adhesion and extension in laboratory settings. Most synthetic proteins, however, are toxic to living cells and thus need to be washed off before cell suspensions are spread onto a new plate. They are also unsuitable for applications that are used inside a living organism.
Within the central nervous system, extracellular matrix substances such as collagen and laminin promote the regeneration, differentiation, adhesion and migration of nerve fibers.
A protein sequence found in collagen and laminin has been identified as the minimum sequence that can mediate the adhesion of many cell types, including nerve cells.
AGMA1 is a basic synthetic protein that is biocompatible, water soluble, positively charged, and has a protein sequence similar to that found in collagen and laminin. It is much less toxic to living cells than conventionally used synthetic proteins. AGMA1 is also much easier to prepare on a large scale using relatively low-cost materials. As a result it is much cheaper.
University of Milan scientists tested the potential of AGMA1 to promote the adhesion, proliferation, and differentiation of primary brain cells in the laboratory.
Different primary cell types from rat brain were cultured on AGMA1, and the results compared with those of cells cultured under the same conditions on conventional substrates using other commonly used synthetic proteins. All experimental results showed that the performance of AGMA1 in this respect was comparable to that of conventional substrates.
For further information contact:
Dr Paolo Ferruti
Department of Chemistry
University of Milan
Sci. Technol. Adv. Mater. 15 (2014) 045007
Controlling phase changes in solids
29.07.2015 | ICFO-The Institute of Photonic Sciences
Smart Hydrogel Coating Creates “Stick-slip” Control of Capillary Action
28.07.2015 | Georgia Institute of Technology
Physicists from Regensburg and Marburg, Germany have succeeded in taking a slow-motion movie of speeding electrons in a solid driven by a strong light wave. In the process, they have unraveled a novel quantum phenomenon, which will be reported in the forthcoming edition of Nature.
The advent of ever faster electronics featuring clock rates up to the multiple-gigahertz range has revolutionized our day-to-day life. Researchers and...
Researchers have developed an ultrafast light-emitting device that can flip on and off 90 billion times a second and could form the basis of optical computing.
Joint BioEnergy Institute study identifies bacterial protein that is key to protecting rice against bacterial blight
A bacterial signal that when recognized by rice plants enables the plants to resist a devastating blight disease has been identified by a multi-national team...
Researchers in the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin are one step closer to delivering smart windows with a new level of energy efficiency, engineering materials that allow windows to reveal light without transferring heat and, conversely, to block light while allowing heat transmission, as described in two new research papers.
By allowing indoor occupants to more precisely control the energy and sunlight passing through a window, the new materials could significantly reduce costs for...
Argonne scientists used Mira to identify and improve a new mechanism for eliminating friction, which fed into the development of a hybrid material that exhibited superlubricity at the macroscale for the first time. Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF) researchers helped enable the groundbreaking simulations by overcoming a performance bottleneck that doubled the speed of the team's code.
While reviewing the simulation results of a promising new lubricant material, Argonne researcher Sanket Deshmukh stumbled upon a phenomenon that had never been...
23.07.2015 | Event News
10.07.2015 | Event News
25.06.2015 | Event News
30.07.2015 | Life Sciences
30.07.2015 | Trade Fair News
30.07.2015 | Awards Funding