Evaluating Oxygen Tensions Related to Bone Marrow and Matrix for MSC Differentiation in 2D and 3D Biomimetic Lamellar Scaffolds

Sayin E., Baran E. T., Elsheikh A., Mudera V., Cheema U., Hasirci V.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF MOLECULAR SCIENCES, vol.22, no.8, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 22 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.3390/ijms22084010
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, CAB Abstracts, EMBASE, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The physiological O-2 microenvironment of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and osteoblasts and the dimensionality of a substrate are known to be important in regulating cell phenotype and function. By providing the physiologically normoxic environments of bone marrow (5%) and matrix (12%), we assessed their potential to maintain stemness, induce osteogenic differentiation, and enhance the material properties in the micropatterned collagen/silk fibroin scaffolds that were produced in 2D or 3D. Expression of osterix (OSX) and vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA) was significantly enhanced in the 3D scaffold in all oxygen environments. At 21% O-2, OSX and VEGFA expressions in the 3D scaffold were respectively 13,200 and 270 times higher than those of the 2D scaffold. Markers for assessing stemness were significantly more pronounced on tissue culture polystyrene and 2D scaffold incubated at 5% O-2. At 21% O-2, we measured significant increases in ultimate tensile strength (p < 0.0001) and Young's modulus (p = 0.003) of the 3D scaffold compared to the 2D scaffold, whilst 5% O-2 hindered the positive effect of cell seeding on tensile strength. In conclusion, we demonstrated that the 3D culture of MSCs in collagen/silk fibroin scaffolds provided biomimetic cues for bone progenitor cells toward differentiation and enhanced the tensile mechanical properties.