Utku Özdemir

Utku Özdemir

Bachelor student

Development of hyaluronic acid based hydrogels for soft tissue engineering


Supervisor: Sonja Kuth, Prof. Aldo R. Boccaccini

Hydrogels may be defined as hydrophilic polymers having greater tendency of retaining huge amounts of water and physiological fluids. Recently, the periodate modification of hyaluronic acid (HA) to oxidized hyaluronic acid (OHA), has received increased attention as an ideal modification to synthesize a crosslinkable and biocompatible polymer, to be used in the formulation of hydrogels for tissue engineering applications [1]. By fine-tuning the mechanical properties of hydrogels, cell adhesion, proliferation and differentiation can be influenced [2].  However, in order to be able to accurately adjust the mechanical properties of each synthesized hydrogel, so that it matches the mechanical properties of the aimed soft tissue, the underlying parameters must be clarified and the effects of changing their values must be understood. In this study, the influence of different molecular structures of OHA-based hydrogels on the mechanical properties are investigated by varying parameters, such as the oxidation time. A complete characterisation of the new OHA materials will be carried out.


[1] A. H. Pandit, N. Mazumdar and S. Ahmad, “Periodate oxidized hyaluronic acid-based hydrogel scaffolds for tissue engineering applications”, International Journal of Biological Macromolecules, vol. 137, pp. 853–869, 2019.

[2]    S. R. Caliari and J. A. Burdick, “A practical guide to hydrogels for cell culture,” Nat. Methods, vol. 13, no. 5, pp. 405–414, 2016.