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Gels 2017, 3(3), 27; doi:10.3390/gels3030027

Hydrogels for Biomedical Applications: Cellulose, Chitosan, and Protein/Peptide Derivatives

Barcelona Research Center for Multiscale Science and Engineering, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Escola d’Enginyeria de Barcelona Est-EEBE, c/Eduard Maristany 10-14, Barcelona 08019, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 June 2017 / Revised: 9 July 2017 / Accepted: 10 July 2017 / Published: 17 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Colloid Chemistry)
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Hydrogels based on polysaccharide and protein natural polymers are of great interest in biomedical applications and more specifically for tissue regeneration and drug delivery. Cellulose, chitosan (a chitin derivative), and collagen are probably the most important components since they are the most abundant natural polymers on earth (cellulose and chitin) and in the human body (collagen). Peptides also merit attention because their self-assembling properties mimic the proteins that are present in the extracellular matrix. The present review is mainly focused on explaining the recent advances on hydrogels derived from the indicated polymers or their combinations. Attention has also been paid to the development of hydrogels for innovative biomedical uses. Therefore, smart materials displaying stimuli responsiveness and having shape memory properties are considered. The use of micro- and nanogels for drug delivery applications is also discussed, as well as the high potential of protein-based hydrogels in the production of bioactive matrices with recognition ability (molecular imprinting). Finally, mention is also given to the development of 3D bioprinting technologies. View Full-Text
Keywords: cellulose; chitosan; collagen; gelatin; peptides; self-assembling; nanogels; shape memory; molecularly imprinting; 3D printing cellulose; chitosan; collagen; gelatin; peptides; self-assembling; nanogels; shape memory; molecularly imprinting; 3D printing

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. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

del Valle, L.J.; Díaz, A.; Puiggalí, J. Hydrogels for Biomedical Applications: Cellulose, Chitosan, and Protein/Peptide Derivatives. Gels 2017, 3, 27.

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