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Glycyrrhetinic Acid-Based Thermoresponsive Hydrogel As a Synthetic Extracellular Matrix for Hepatocyte Culture and Recovery

He Xiao-Ling, Ge Li-Li, Liu Ze-Li, Lu Wen-Jia, Li Jia-Quan, Zhao Yue-Mei, Li Xiang-Xu, Yang Ning, Chen Li, Wei Dong-Sheng
Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research 2014 v.53 no.26 pp. 10618-10628
adhesion, albumins, cell adhesion, contact angle, extracellular matrix, hepatocytes, hepatoma, human cell lines, hydrogels, hydrophilicity, hydrophobicity, liver, scanning electron microscopy, temperature, tissue engineering, urea
Glycyrrhetinic acid-based thermoresponsive hydrogels P(NIPAAm-co-GAA) were prepared and used to promote initial cell adhesion, growth, and recovery by lowering temperature for further tissue engineering or bioartificial liver applications. The compositions, morphologies and properties of hydrogels were characterized by element analysis, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and water contact angle measurement (WCA), respectively. P(NIPAAm-co-GAA) hydrogels exhibited a shift between hydrophilicity and hydrophobicity by controlling temperature. Adhesion, growth, detachment, and physiological functions of human hepatocyte (HL-7702) cultured on P(NIPAAm-co-GAA) hydrogels were examined. The introduction of glycyrrhetinic acid (GA) with specific affinity to hepatocyte promoted the adhesion and proliferation of HL-7702 cells effectively. Importantly, HL-7702 cells cultured on P(NIPAAm-co-GAA) hydrogels maintained high levels of urea and albumin synthesis. HL-7702 cells grown on P(NIPAAm-co-GAA) hydrogels can also be recovered spontaneously by only reducing culture temperature without any damage. Furthermore, the behaviors of HL-7702 and human hepatoma cells (HepG2) on P(NIPAAm-co-GAA) hydrogels were evaluated comparatively. The result revealed that P(NIPAAm-co-GAA) hydrogels facilitated HL-7702 but inhibited the growth of HepG2. Glycyrrhetinic acid-based thermoresponsive hydrogel was shown to be a promising matrix for cultivation of functional hepatocytes.