Preparation and rheological characterization of a gel form of the porcine urinary bladder matrix

Donald O. Freytes, Jeffrey Martin, Sachin S. Velankar, Annie S. Lee, Stephen F. Badylak*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

420 Scopus citations


Biologic scaffolds composed of extracellular matrix (ECM) have been used to facilitate the repair and reconstruction of a variety of tissues in clinical and pre-clinical studies. The clinical utility of such scaffolds can be limited by the geometric and mechanical properties of the tissue or organ from which the ECM is harvested. An injectable gel form of ECM could potentially conform to any three-dimensional shape and could be delivered to sites of interest by minimally invasive techniques. The objectives of the present study were to prepare a gel form of ECM harvested from the urinary bladder (urinary bladder matrix or UBM), to characterize the rheological properties of the gel, and finally to evaluate the ability of the gel to support in vitro growth of smooth muscle cells. Following enzymatic solubilization with pepsin, UBM was induced to self-assemble into a gel when brought to physiological conditions. The UBM gel supported the adhesion and growth of rat aortic smooth muscle cells when cultured under static in vitro conditions. The present study showed that an intact form of UBM can be successfully solubilized without purification steps and induced to repolymerize into a gel form of the UBM biologic scaffold material.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1630-1637
Number of pages8
Issue number11
StatePublished - Apr 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Extracellular matrix
  • Gel
  • Rheology
  • Scaffold
  • Viscoelasticity


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