Graphene oxide enhances alginate encapsulated cells viability and functionality while not affecting the foreign body response

Jesús Ciriza, Laura Saenz Del Burgo, Haritz Gurruchaga, Francesc E. Borras, Marcella Franquesa, Gorka Orive, Rosa Maria Hernández, José Luis Pedraz

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22 Citations (Scopus)


© 2018 The Author(s). The combination of protein-coated graphene oxide (GO) and microencapsulation technology has moved a step forward in the challenge of improving long-term alginate encapsulated cell survival and sustainable therapeutic protein release, bringing closer its translation from bench to the clinic. Although this new approach in cell microencapsulation represents a great promise for long-term drug delivery, previous studies have been performed only with encapsulated murine C2C12 myoblasts genetically engineered to secrete murine erythropoietin (C2C12-EPO) within 160 mm diameter hybrid alginate protein-coated GO microcapsules implanted into syngeneic mice. Here, we show that encapsulated C2C12-EPO myoblasts survive longer and release more therapeutic protein by doubling the micron diameter of hybrid alginate-protein-coated GO microcapsules to 380 mm range. Encapsulated mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) genetically modified to secrete erythropoietin (D1-MSCs-EPO) within 380 mm-diameter hybrid alginate-protein-coated GO microcapsules confirmed this improvement in survival and sustained protein release in vitro. This improved behavior is reflected in the hematocrit increase of allogeneic mice implanted with both encapsulated cell types within 380 μm diameter hybrid alginate-protein-coated GO microcapsules, showing lower immune response with encapsulated MSCs. These results provide a new relevant step for the future clinical application of protein-coated GO on cell microencapsulation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1147-1160
JournalDrug Delivery
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Cell microencapsulation
  • Erythropoietin
  • Graphene oxide
  • Immune response
  • Stem cells


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