, Volume 4, Issue 5, pp 575-591
Date: 05 Aug 2011

Strategies for Tissue Engineering Cardiac Constructs to Affect Functional Repair Following Myocardial Infarction

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Abstract

Tissue-engineered cardiac constructs are a high potential therapy for treating myocardial infarction. These therapies have the ability to regenerate or recreate functional myocardium following the infarction, restoring some of the lost function of the heart and thereby preventing congestive heart failure. Three key factors to consider when developing engineered myocardial tissue include the cell source, the choice of scaffold, and the use of biomimetic culture conditions. This review details the various biomaterials and scaffold types that have been used to generate engineered myocardial tissues as well as a number of different methods used for the fabrication and culture of these constructs. Specific bioreactor design considerations for creating myocardial tissue equivalents in vitro, such as oxygen and nutrient delivery as well as physical stimulation, are also discussed. Lastly, a brief overview of some of the in vivo studies that have been conducted to date and their assessment of the functional benefit in repairing the injured heart with engineered myocardial tissue is provided.