Design Parameters of Tissue-Engineering Scaffolds at the Atomic Scale

Shehrazade Jekhmane, Marek Prachar, Raffaele Pugliese, Federico Fontana, João Medeiros-Silva, Fabrizio Gelain, Markus Weingarth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Stem-cell behavior is regulated by the material properties of the surrounding extracellular matrix, which has important implications for the design of tissue-engineering scaffolds. However, our understanding of the material properties of stem-cell scaffolds is limited to nanoscopic-to-macroscopic length scales. Herein, a solid-state NMR approach is presented that provides atomic-scale information on complex stem-cell substrates at near physiological conditions and at natural isotope abundance. Using self-assembled peptidic scaffolds designed for nervous-tissue regeneration, we show at atomic scale how scaffold-assembly degree, mechanics, and homogeneity correlate with favorable stem cell behavior. Integration of solid-state NMR data with molecular dynamics simulations reveals a highly ordered fibrillar structure as the most favorable stem-cell scaffold. This could improve the design of tissue-engineering scaffolds and other self-assembled biomaterials.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2019


  • hydrogels
  • regenerative medicine
  • self-assembling peptides
  • solid-state NMR
  • tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)


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