The modulation of cardiac progenitor cell function by hydrogel-dependent Notch1 activation

Archana V. Boopathy, Pao Lin Che, Inthirai Somasuntharam, Vincent F. Fiore, E. Bernadette Cabigas, Kiwon Ban, Milton E. Brown, Yoshie Narui, Thomas H. Barker, Young Sup Yoon, Khalid Salaita, Andrés J. García, Michael E. Davis

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Myocardial infarction is the leading cause of death worldwide and phase I clinical trials utilizing cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs) have shown promising outcomes. Notch1 signaling plays a critical role in cardiac development and in the survival, cardiogenic lineage commitment, and differentiation of cardiac stem/progenitor cells. In this study, we functionalized self-assembling peptide (SAP) hydrogels with a peptide mimic of the Notch1 ligand Jagged1 (RJ) to evaluate the therapeutic benefit of CPC delivery in the hydrogels in a rat model of myocardial infarction. The behavior of CPCs cultured in the 3D hydrogels in vitro including gene expression, proliferation, and growth factor production was evaluated. Interestingly, we observed Notch1 activation to be dependent on hydrogel polymer density/stiffness with synergistic increase in presence of RJ. Our results show that RJ mediated Notch1 activation depending on hydrogel concentration differentially regulated cardiogenic gene expression, proliferation, and growth factor production in CPCs in vitro. In rats subjected to experimental myocardial infarction, improvement in acute retention and cardiac function was observed following cell therapy in RJ hydrogels compared to unmodified or scrambled peptide containing hydrogels. This study demonstrates the potential therapeutic benefit of functionalizing SAP hydrogels with RJ for CPC based cardiac repair.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8103-8112
Number of pages10
Issue number28
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Sep


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Ceramics and Composites
  • Biophysics
  • Biomaterials
  • Mechanics of Materials

Cite this

Boopathy, A. V., Che, P. L., Somasuntharam, I., Fiore, V. F., Cabigas, E. B., Ban, K., Brown, M. E., Narui, Y., Barker, T. H., Yoon, Y. S., Salaita, K., García, A. J., & Davis, M. E. (2014). The modulation of cardiac progenitor cell function by hydrogel-dependent Notch1 activation. Biomaterials, 35(28), 8103-8112.