Regenerating Tissues with Sustained Growth Factor Delivery
Biomaterial releasing VEGF and IGF-1 stimulates local repair and regrowth of nerves, muscles, and blood vessels.
Millions of people worldwide suffer from traumatic injuries or health conditions that cause damage to soft tissues including nerves, muscles, and blood vessels. The body can heal some of that damage, but more serious cases like the severing of a nerve or sustained oxygen deprivation can lead to permanent loss of movement or sensation in a limb, or even require amputation.
Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) are naturally occurring biomolecules in the body that are known to help enhance tissue regrowth after injury or chronic disease. However, delivering these growth factors via blood vessel injection or other standard methods has suffered from low efficacy in tissue regeneration, a very short duration of action, and toxicity that has prevented them from being developed into effective regenerative treatments. Alternatives such as muscle transplantation procedures exist, but they often have poor re-innervation results, and a better option is needed.