Natural and Synthetic Scaffolds Tissue Engineering
edited by: Norbert Pallua, Christoph V. Suscheck
Tissue engineering is an interdisciplinary field aimed at the application of the principles and methods of engineering and life sciences toward the fundamental understanding of structure–function relationships in normal and pathological mammalian tissues and the development of biological substitutes to restore, maintain, or improve tissue functions [8, 38, 56, 57, 78, 111]. Typically, this involves collaborative efforts between materials scientists, cell and molecular biologists, immunologists, surgeons, and engineers to create replacement tissues that will be accepted by the body and promote native extracellular matrix (ECM) production. This requires the use of materials that do not activate catabolic pathways in the body, ultimately leading to fibrous encapsulation or destruction of the material [25, 78, 104, 111].