Imageable AuNP-ECM Hydrogel Tissue Implants for Regenerative Medicine

Malka Shilo, Ester Sapir Baruch, Lior Wertheim, Hadas Oved, Assaf Shapira, Tal Dvir

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In myocardial infarction, a blockage in one of the coronary arteries leads to ischemic conditions in the left ventricle of the myocardium and, therefore, to significant death of contractile cardiac cells. This process leads to the formation of scar tissue, which reduces heart functionality. Cardiac tissue engineering is an interdisciplinary technology that treats the injured myocardium and improves its functionality. However, in many cases, mainly when employing injectable hydrogels, the treatment may be partial because it does not fully cover the diseased area and, therefore, may not be effective and even cause conduction disorders. Here, we report a hybrid nanocomposite material composed of gold nanoparticles and an extracellular matrix-based hydrogel. Such a hybrid hydrogel could support cardiac cell growth and promote cardiac tissue assembly. After injection of the hybrid material into the diseased area of the heart, it could be efficiently imaged by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Furthermore, as the scar tissue could also be detected by MRI, a distinction between the diseased area and the treatment could be made, providing information about the ability of the hydrogel to cover the scar. We envision that such a nanocomposite hydrogel may improve the accuracy of tissue engineering treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1298
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • ECM-based hydrogel
  • MRI
  • gadolinium
  • gold nanoparticles
  • myocardial infarction
  • tissue engineering


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