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BioMed Research International
Volume 2017, Article ID 8591073, 12 pages
Research Article

An ECM-Mimicking, Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Embedded Hybrid Scaffold for Bone Regeneration

1Faculty of Medicine, Technion, 3109601 Haifa, Israel
2Institute of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and Oral Medicine, Galilee Medical Center, 2210001 Nahariya, Israel
3Research Center, Galilee Medical Center, 2210001 Nahariya, Israel
4Faculty of Medicine in the Galilee, Bar-Ilan University, 1311502 Safed, Israel
5Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technion, 3200003 Haifa, Israel

Correspondence should be addressed to Samer Srouji; moc.liamg@ijuorsremas.rd

Received 27 June 2017; Revised 25 September 2017; Accepted 15 October 2017; Published 15 November 2017

Academic Editor: Costantino Del Gaudio

Copyright © 2017 Jozafina Haj et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


While biologically feasible, bone repair is often inadequate, particularly in cases of large defects. The search for effective bone regeneration strategies has led to the emergence of bone tissue engineering (TE) techniques. When integrating electrospinning techniques, scaffolds featuring randomly oriented or aligned fibers, characteristic of the extracellular matrix (ECM), can be fabricated. In parallel, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs), which are capable of both self-renewing and differentiating into numerous tissue types, have been suggested to be a suitable option for cell-based tissue engineering therapies. This work aimed to create a novel biocompatible hybrid scaffold composed of electrospun polymeric nanofibers combined with osteoconductive ceramics, loaded with human MSCs, to yield a tissue-like construct to promote in vivo bone formation. Characterization of the cell-embedded scaffolds demonstrated their resemblance to bone tissue extracellular matrix, on both micro- and nanoscales and MSC viability and integration within the electrospun nanofibers. Subcutaneous implantation of the cell-embedded scaffolds in the dorsal side of mice led to new bone, muscle, adipose, and connective tissue formation within 8 weeks. This hybrid scaffold may represent a step forward in the pursuit of advanced bone tissue engineering scaffolds.