Peptide nanogels as a scaffold for fabricating dermal grafts and 3D vascularized skin models

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Millions of people worldwide suffer from skin injuries, which create significant problems in their lives and are costly to cure. Tissue engineering is a promising approach that aims to fabricate functional organs using biocompatible scaffolds. We designed ultrashort tetrameric peptides with promising properties required for skin tissue engineering. Our work aimed to test the efficacy of these scaffolds for the fabrication of dermal grafts and 3D vascularized skin tissue models. We found that the direct contact of keratinocytes and fibroblasts enhanced the proliferation of the keratinocytes. Moreover, the expression levels of TGF-β1, b-FGF, IL-6, and IL-1α is correlated with the growth of the fibroblasts and keratinocytes in the co-culture. Furthermore, we successfully produced a 3D vascularized skin co-culture model using these peptide scaffolds. We believe that the described results represent an advancement in the fabrication of skin tissue equivalent, thereby providing the opportunity to rebuild missing, failing, or damaged parts.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)204173142211118
JournalJournal of Tissue Engineering
StatePublished - Jul 29 2022

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2022-09-14
Acknowledgements: The authors would like to acknowledge the support from Ohoud Alharbi, KAUST Core Laboratories, for SEM imaging. We also acknowledge Manola Moretti from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology for the valuable discussions and suggestions. Finally, we also acknowledge Prof. Abdalla Awidi from the University of Jordan/Cell Therapy Center for providing primary human keratinocytes. This work was financially supported by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST).

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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