In vitro biocompatibility of polylactide and polybutylene succinate blends for urethral tissue engineering

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Surgical treatment of urothelial defects with autologous genital or extragenital tissue grafts is susceptible to complications. Tissue engineering utilizing novel biomaterials and cells such as human urothelial cells (hUC) for epithelial regeneration and adipose stromal cells (hASC) for smooth muscle restoration might offer new treatment options for urothelial defects. Previously, polylactide (PLA) has been studied for urethral tissue engineering, however, as such, it is too stiff and rigid for the application. Blending it with ductile polybutylene succinate (PBSu) could provide suitable mechanical properties for the application. Our aim was to study the morphology, viability and proliferation of hUC and hASC when cultured on 100/0 PLA/PBSu, 75/25 PLA/PBSu blend, 50/50 PLA/PBSu blend, and 0/100 PLA/PBSu discs. The results showed that the hUCs were viable and proliferated on all the studied materials. The hUCs stained pancytokeratin at 7 and 14 days, suggesting maintenance of the urothelial phenotype. The hASCs retained their viability and morphology and proliferated on all the other discs, except on PLA. On the PLA, the hASCs formed large aggregates with each other rather than attached to the material. The early smooth muscle cell markers SM22α and α-SMA were stained in hASC at 7 and 14 day time points on all PBSu-containing materials, indicating that hASCs maintain their smooth muscle differentiation potential also on PBSu. As a conclusion, PBSu is a highly potential biomaterial for urothelial tissue engineering since it supports growth and phenotypic maintenance of hUC and smooth muscle differentiation of hASC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1728-1740
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Biomedical Materials Research - Part B Applied Biomaterials
Issue number10
Early online dateMay 2023
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • adipose stromal cells (ASC)
  • polybutylene succinate (PBSu)
  • polylactide (PLA)
  • polymer blends
  • urethral tissue engineering
  • urothelial cells (UC)

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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