Browsing by Author "del Campo, Aránzazu"
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- Item3D Printing of a Reactive Hydrogel Bio-Ink Using a Static Mixing Tool(Basel : MDPI, 2020) Puertas-Bartolomé, Maria; Włodarczyk-Biegun, Małgorzata K; del Campo, Aránzazu; Vázquez-Lasa, Blanca; San Román, JulioHydrogel-based bio-inks have recently attracted more attention for 3D printing applications in tissue engineering due to their remarkable intrinsic properties, such as a cell supporting environment. However, their usually weak mechanical properties lead to poor printability and low stability of the obtained structures. To obtain good shape fidelity, current approaches based on extrusion printing use high viscosity solutions, which can compromise cell viability. This paper presents a novel bio-printing methodology based on a dual-syringe system with a static mixing tool that allows in situ crosslinking of a two-component hydrogel-based ink in the presence of living cells. The reactive hydrogel system consists of carboxymethyl chitosan (CMCh) and partially oxidized hyaluronic acid (HAox) that undergo fast self-covalent crosslinking via Schiff base formation. This new approach allows us to use low viscosity solutions since in situ gelation provides the appropriate structural integrity to maintain the printed shape. The proposed bio-ink formulation was optimized to match crosslinking kinetics with the printing process and multi-layered 3D bio-printed scaffolds were successfully obtained. Printed scaffolds showed moderate swelling, good biocompatibility with embedded cells, and were mechanically stable after 14 days of the cell culture. We envision that this straightforward, powerful, and generalizable printing approach can be used for a wide range of materials, growth factors, or cell types, to be employed for soft tissue regeneration.
- ItemBifunctional hydrogels containing the laminin motif IKVAV promote neurogenesis(Amsterdam : Elsevier, 2017) Farrukh, Aleeza; Ortega, Felipe; Fan, Wenqiang; Marichal, Nicolás; Paez, Julieta I.; Berninger, Benedikt; del Campo, Aránzazu; Salierno, Marcelo J.Engineering of biomaterials with specific biological properties has gained momentum as a means to control stem cell behavior. Here, we address the effect of bifunctionalized hydrogels comprising polylysine (PL) and a 19-mer peptide containing the laminin motif IKVAV (IKVAV) on embryonic and adult neuronal progenitor cells under different stiffness regimes. Neuronal differentiation of embryonic and adult neural progenitors was accelerated by adjusting the gel stiffness to 2 kPa and 20 kPa, respectively.While gels containing IKVAV or PL alone failed to support long-term cell adhesion, in bifunctional gels, IKVAV synergized with PL to promote differentiation and formation of focal adhesions containing b1-integrin in embryonic cortical neurons. Furthermore, in adult neural stem cell culture, bifunctionalized gels promoted neurogenesis via the expansion of neurogenic clones. These data highlight the potential of synthetic matrices to steer stem and progenitor cell behavior via defined mechano-adhesive properties.
- ItemA bio-based route to the carbon-5 chemical glutaric acid and to bionylon-6,5 using metabolically engineered Corynebacterium glutamicum(Cambridge : Royal Society of Chemistry, 2018) Rohles, Christina Maria; Gläser, Lars; Kohlstedt, Michael; Gießelmann, Gideon; Pearson, Samuel; del Campo, Aránzazu; Becker, Judith; Wittmann, ChristophIn the present work, we established the bio-based production of glutarate, a carbon-5 dicarboxylic acid with recognized value for commercial plastics and other applications, using metabolically engineered Corynebacterium glutamicum. The mutant C. glutamicum AVA-2 served as a starting point for strain development, because it secreted small amounts of glutarate as a consequence of its engineered 5-aminovalerate pathway. Starting from AVA-2, we overexpressed 5-aminovalerate transaminase (gabT) and glutarate semialdehyde dehydrogenase (gabD) under the control of the constitutive tuf promoter to convert 5-aminovalerate further to glutarate. The created strain GTA-1 formed glutarate as a major product, but still secreted 5-aminovalerate as well. This bottleneck was tackled at the level of 5-aminovalerate re-import. The advanced strain GTA-4 overexpressed the newly discovered 5-aminovalerate importer NCgl0464 and formed glutarate from glucose in a yield of 0.27 mol mol−1. In a fed-batch process, GTA-4 produced more than 90 g L−1 glutarate from glucose and molasses based sugars in a yield of up to 0.70 mol mol−1 and a maximum productivity of 1.8 g L−1 h−1, while 5-aminovalerate was no longer secreted. The bio-based glutaric acid was purified to >99.9% purity. Interfacial polymerization and melt polymerization with hexamethylenediamine yielded bionylon-6,5, a polyamide with a unique structure.
- ItemCompliant Substrates Enhance Macrophage Cytokine Release and NLRP3 Inflammasome Formation During Their Pro-Inflammatory Response(2021) Escolano, Joan-Carles; Taubenberger, Anna V.; Abuhattum, Shada; Schweitzer, Christine; Farrukh, Aleeza; del Campo, Aránzazu; Bryant, Clare E.; Guck, JochenImmune cells process a myriad of biochemical signals but their function and behavior are also determined by mechanical cues. Macrophages are no exception to this. Being present in all types of tissues, macrophages are exposed to environments of varying stiffness, which can be further altered under pathological conditions. While it is becoming increasingly clear that macrophages are mechanosensitive, it remains poorly understood how mechanical cues modulate their inflammatory response. Here we report that substrate stiffness influences the expression of pro-inflammatory genes and the formation of the NLRP3 inflammasome, leading to changes in the secreted protein levels of the cytokines IL-1b and IL-6. Using polyacrylamide hydrogels of tunable elastic moduli between 0.2 and 33.1 kPa, we found that bone marrow-derived macrophages adopted a less spread and rounder morphology on compliant compared to stiff substrates. Upon LPS priming, the expression levels of the gene encoding for TNF-a were higher on more compliant hydrogels. When additionally stimulating macrophages with the ionophore nigericin, we observed an enhanced formation of the NLRP3 inflammasome, increased levels of cell death, and higher secreted protein levels of IL-1b and IL-6 on compliant substrates. The upregulation of inflammasome formation on compliant substrates was not primarily attributed to the decreased cell spreading, since spatially confining cells on micropatterns led to a reduction of inflammasome-positive cells compared to well-spread cells. Finally, interfering with actomyosin contractility diminished the differences in inflammasome formation between compliant and stiff substrates. In summary, we show that substrate stiffness modulates the pro-inflammatory response of macrophages, that the NLRP3 inflammasome is one of the components affected by macrophage mechanosensing, and a role for actomyosin contractility in this mechanosensory response. Thus, our results contribute to a better understanding of how microenvironment stiffness affects macrophage behavior, which might be relevant in diseases where tissue stiffness is altered and might potentially provide a basis for new strategies to modulate inflammatory responses.
- ItemDevelopment of bioactive catechol functionalized nanoparticles applicable for 3D bioprinting(Amsterdam : Elsevier, 2021) Puertas-Bartolomé, María; Włodarczyk-Biegun, Małgorzata K.; del Campo, Aránzazu; Vázquez-Lasa, Blanca; San Román, JulioEfficient wound treatments to target specific events in the healing process of chronic wounds constitute a significant aim in regenerative medicine. In this sense, nanomedicine can offer new opportunities to improve the effectiveness of existing wound therapies. The aim of this study was to develop catechol bearing polymeric nanoparticles (NPs) and to evaluate their potential in the field of wound healing. Thus, NPs wound healing promoting activities, potential for drug encapsulation and controlled release, and further incorporation in a hydrogel bioink formulation to fabricate cell-laden 3D scaffolds are studied. NPs with 2 and 29 M % catechol contents (named NP2 and NP29) were obtained by nanoprecipitation and presented hydrodynamic diameters of 100 and 75 nm respectively. These nanocarriers encapsulated the hydrophobic compound coumarin-6 with 70% encapsulation efficiency values. In cell culture studies, the NPs had a protective effect in RAW 264.7 macrophages against oxidative stress damage induced by radical oxygen species (ROS). They also presented a regulatory effect on the inflammatory response of stimulated macrophages and promoted upregulation of the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in fibroblasts and endothelial cells. In particular, NP29 were used in a hydrogel bioink formulation using carboxymethyl chitosan and hyaluronic acid as polymeric matrices. Using a reactive mixing bioprinting approach, NP-loaded hydrogel scaffolds with good structural integrity, shape fidelity and homogeneous NPs dispersion, were obtained. The in vitro catechol NPs release profile of the printed scaffolds revealed a sustained delivery. The bioprinted scaffolds supported viability and proliferation of encapsulated L929 fibroblasts over 14 days. We envision that the catechol functionalized NPs and resulting bioactive bioink presented in this work offer promising advantages for wound healing applications, as they: 1) support controlled release of bioactive catechol NPs to the wound site; 2) can incorporate additional therapeutic functions by co-encapsulating drugs; 3) can be printed into 3D scaffolds with tailored geometries based on patient requirements.
- ItemElastomeric Optical Waveguides by Extrusion Printing(Weinheim : Wiley, 2022) Feng, Jun; Zheng, Yijun; Jiang, Qiyang; Włodarczyk‐Biegun, Małgorzata K.; Pearson, Samuel; del Campo, AránzazuAdvances in optogenetics and the increasing use of implantable devices for therapies and health monitoring are driving demand for compliant, biocompatible optical waveguides and scalable methods for their manufacture. Molding, thermal drawing, and dip-coating are the most prevalent approaches in recent literature. Here the authors demonstrate that extrusion printing at room temperature can be used for continuous fabrication of compliant optical waveguides with polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) core and crosslinked Pluronic F127-diacrylate (Pluronic-DA) cladding. The optical fibers are printed from fluid precursor inks and stabilized by physical interactions and photoinitiated crosslinking in the Pluronic-DA. The printed fibers show optical loss values of 0.13–0.34 dB cm–1 in air and tissue within the wavelength range of 405–520 nm. The fibers have a Young's Modulus (Pluronic cladding) of 150 kPa and can be stretched to more than 5 times their length. The optical loss of the fibers shows little variation with extension. This work demonstrates how printing can simplify the fabrication of compliant and stretchable devices from materials approved for clinical use. These can be of interest for optogenetic or photopharmacology applications in extensible tissues, like muscles or heart.
- ItemLight-Regulated Angiogenesis via a Phototriggerable VEGF Peptidomimetic(Weinheim : Wiley-VCH, 2021) Nair, Roshna V.; Farrukh, Aleeza; del Campo, AránzazuThe application of growth factor based therapies in regenerative medicine is limited by the high cost, fast degradation kinetics, and the multiple functions of these molecules in the cell, which requires regulated delivery to minimize side effects. Here a photoactivatable peptidomimetic of the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) that allows the light-controlled presentation of angiogenic signals to endothelial cells embedded in hydrogel matrices is presented. A photoresponsive analog of the 15-mer peptidomimetic Ac-KLTWQELYQLKYKGI-NH2 (abbreviated PQK) is prepared by introducing a 3-(4,5-dimethoxy-2-nitrophenyl)-2-butyl (DMNPB) photoremovable protecting group at the Trp4 residue. This modification inhibits the angiogenic potential of the peptide temporally. Light exposure of PQK modified hydrogels provide instructive cues to embedded endothelial cells and promote angiogenesis at the illuminated sites of the 3D culture, with the possibility of spatial control. PQK modified photoresponsive biomaterials offer an attractive approach for the dosed delivery and spatial control of pro-angiogenic factors to support regulated vascular growth by just using light as an external trigger.
- ItemLighting the Path: Light Delivery Strategies to Activate Photoresponsive Biomaterials In Vivo(Weinheim : Wiley-VCH, 2021) Pearson, Samuel; Feng, Jun; del Campo, AránzazuPhotoresponsive biomaterials are experiencing a transition from in vitro models to in vivo demonstrations that point toward clinical translation. Dynamic hydrogels for cell encapsulation, light-responsive carriers for controlled drug delivery, and nanomaterials containing photosensitizers for photodynamic therapy are relevant examples. Nonetheless, the step to the clinic largely depends on their combination with technologies to bring light into the body. This review highlights the challenge of photoactivation in vivo, and presents strategies for light management that can be adopted for this purpose. The authors’ focus is on technologies that are materials-driven, particularly upconversion nanoparticles that assist in “direct path” light delivery through tissue, and optical waveguides that “clear the path” between external light source and in vivo target. The authors’ intention is to assist the photoresponsive biomaterials community transition toward medical technologies by presenting light delivery concepts that can be integrated with the photoresponsive targets. The authors also aim to stimulate further innovation in materials-based light delivery platforms by highlighting needs and opportunities for in vivo photoactivation of biomaterials. © 2021 The Authors. Advanced Functional Materials published by Wiley-VCH GmbH.
- ItemMechanically reinforced catechol-containing hydrogels with improved tissue gluing performance(Basel : MDPI, 2017) Feng, Jun; Ton, Xuan-Anh; Zhao, Shifang; Paez, Julieta I.; del Campo, AránzazuIn situ forming hydrogels with catechol groups as tissue reactive functionalities are interesting bioinspired materials for tissue adhesion. Poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)–catechol tissue glues have been intensively investigated for this purpose. Different cross-linking mechanisms (oxidative or metal complexation) and cross-linking conditions (pH, oxidant concentration, etc.) have been studied in order to optimize the curing kinetics and final cross-linking degree of the system. However, reported systems still show limited mechanical stability, as expected from a PEG network, and this fact limits their potential application to load bearing tissues. Here, we describe mechanically reinforced PEG–catechol adhesives showing excellent and tunable cohesive properties and adhesive performance to tissue in the presence of blood. We used collagen/PEG mixtures, eventually filled with hydroxyapatite nanoparticles. The composite hydrogels show far better mechanical performance than the individual components. It is noteworthy that the adhesion strength measured on skin covered with blood was >40 kPa, largely surpassing (>6 fold) the performance of cyanoacrylate, fibrin, and PEG–catechol systems. Moreover, the mechanical and interfacial properties could be easily tuned by slight changes in the composition of the glue to adapt them to the particular properties of the tissue. The reported adhesive compositions can tune and improve cohesive and adhesive properties of PEG–catechol-based tissue glues for load-bearing surgery applications.
- ItemMicroenvironments designed to support growth and function of neuronal cells(Lausanne : Frontiers Media, 2018) Farrukh, Aleeza; Zhao, Shifang; del Campo, AránzazuStrategies for neural tissue repair heavily depend on our ability to temporally reconstruct the natural cellular microenvironment of neural cells. Biomaterials play a fundamental role in this context, as they provide the mechanical support for cells to attach and migrate to the injury site, as well as fundamental signals for differentiation. This review describes how different cellular processes (attachment, proliferation, and (directional) migration and differentiation) have been supported by different material parameters, in vitro and in vivo. Although incipient guidelines for biomaterial design become visible, literature in the field remains rather phenomenological. As in other fields of tissue regeneration, progress will depend on more systematic studies on cell-materials response, better understanding on how cells behave and understand signals in their natural milieu from neurobiology studies, and the translation of this knowledge into engineered microenvironments for clinical use.
- ItemMolecular stiffness cues of an interpenetrating network hydrogel for cell adhesion(Amsterdam : Elsevier, 2022) Li, Bin; Çolak, Arzu; Blass, Johanna; Han, Mitchell; Zhang, Jingnan; Zheng, Yijun; Jiang, Qiyang; Bennewitz, Roland; del Campo, AránzazuUnderstanding cells' response to the macroscopic and nanoscale properties of biomaterials requires studies in model systems with the possibility to tailor their mechanical properties and different length scales. Here, we describe an interpenetrating network (IPN) design based on a stiff PEGDA host network interlaced within a soft 4-arm PEG-Maleimide/thiol (guest) network. We quantify the nano- and bulk mechanical behavior of the IPN and the single network hydrogels by single-molecule force spectroscopy and rheological measurements. The IPN presents different mechanical cues at the molecular scale, depending on which network is linked to the probe, but the same mechanical properties at the macroscopic length scale as the individual host network. Cells attached to the interpenetrating (guest) network of the IPN or to the single network (SN) PEGDA hydrogel modified with RGD adhesive ligands showed comparable attachment and spreading areas, but cells attached to the guest network of the IPN, with lower molecular stiffness, showed a larger number and size of focal adhesion complexes and a higher concentration of the Hippo pathway effector Yes-associated protein (YAP) than cells linked to the PEGDA single network. The observations indicate that cell adhesion to the IPN hydrogel through the network with lower molecular stiffness proceeds effectively as if a higher ligand density is offered. We claim that IPNs can be used to decipher how changes in ECM design and connectivity at the local scale affect the fate of cells cultured on biomaterials.
- ItemMonitoring the contact stress distribution of gecko-inspired adhesives using mechano-sensitive surface coatings(Washington D.C. : American Chemical Society, 2018) Neubauer, Jens W.; Xue, Longjian; Erath, Johann; Drotlef, Dirk-Michael; del Campo, Aránzazu; Fery, AndreasThe contact geometry of microstructured adhesive surfaces is of high relevance for adhesion enhancement. Theoretical considerations indicate that the stress distribution in the contact zone is crucial for the detachment mechanism, but direct experimental evidence is missing so far. In this work, we propose a method that allows, for the first time, the detection of local stresses at the contact area of biomimetic adhesive microstructures during contact formation, compression and detachment. We use a mechano-sensitive polymeric layer, which turns mechanical stresses into changes of fluorescence intensity. The biomimetic surface is brought into contact with this layer in a well-defined fashion using a microcontact printer, while the contact area is monitored with fluorescence microscopy in situ. Thus, changes in stress distribution across the contact area during compression and pull-off can be visualized with a lateral resolution of 1 μm. We apply this method to study the enhanced adhesive performance of T-shaped micropillars, compared to flat punch microstructures. We find significant differences in the stress distribution of the both differing contact geometries during pull-off. In particular, we find direct evidence for the suppression of crack nucleation at the edge of T-shaped pillars, which confirms theoretical models for the superior adhesive properties of these structures.
- ItemOptoregulated force application to cellular receptors using molecular motors(London : Nature Publishing Group, 2021) Zheng, Yijun; Han, Mitchell K.L.; Zhao, Renping; Blass, Johanna; Zhang, Jingnan; Zhou, Dennis W.; Colard-Itté, Jean-Rémy; Dattler, Damien; Çolak, Arzu; Hoth, Markus; García, Andrés J.; Qu, Bin; Bennewitz, Roland; Giuseppone, Nicolas; del Campo, AránzazuProgress in our understanding of mechanotransduction events requires noninvasive methods for the manipulation of forces at molecular scale in physiological environments. Inspired by cellular mechanisms for force application (i.e. motor proteins pulling on cytoskeletal fibers), we present a unique molecular machine that can apply forces at cell-matrix and cell-cell junctions using light as an energy source. The key actuator is a light-driven rotatory molecular motor linked to polymer chains, which is intercalated between a membrane receptor and an engineered biointerface. The light-driven actuation of the molecular motor is converted in mechanical twisting of the entangled polymer chains, which will in turn effectively “pull” on engaged cell membrane receptors (e.g., integrins, T cell receptors) within the illuminated area. Applied forces have physiologically-relevant magnitude and occur at time scales within the relevant ranges for mechanotransduction at cell-friendly exposure conditions, as demonstrated in force-dependent focal adhesion maturation and T cell activation experiments. Our results reveal the potential of nanomotors for the manipulation of living cells at the molecular scale and demonstrate a functionality which at the moment cannot be achieved by other technologies for force application.
- ItemPhotoactivatable Hsp47: A tool to control and regulate collagen secretion & assembly(ChemRxiv, 2018) Khan, Essak; Sankaran, Shrikrishnan; Paez, Julieta; Muth, Christina; Han, Mitchell; del Campo, AránzazuHsp47 is a chaperone protein with a fundamental role in the folding, stability and intracellular transport of procollagen triple helices. A light-responsive Hsp47 recombinant protein, engineered to control in situ the production and assembly of cellular collagen is here demonstrated. This novel light-driven tool enables unprecedented fundamental studies of collagen biosynthesis and associated diseases.
- ItemPrinted Degradable Optical Waveguides for Guiding Light into Tissue(Weinheim : Wiley-VCH, 2020) Feng, Jun; Zheng, Yijun; Bhusari, Shardul; Villiou, Maria; Pearson, Samuel; del Campo, AránzazuOptogenetics and photonic technologies are changing the future of medicine. To implement light‐based therapies in the clinic, patient‐friendly devices that can deliver light inside the body while offering tunable properties and compatibility with soft tissues are needed. Here extrusion printing of degradable, hydrogel‐based optical waveguides with optical losses as low as 0.1 dB cm−1 at visible wavelengths is described. Core‐only and core‐cladding fibers are printed at room temperature from polyethylene glycol (PEG)‐based and PEG/Pluronic precursors, and cured by in situ photopolymerization. The obtained waveguides are flexible, with mechanical properties tunable within a tissue‐compatible range. Degradation times are also tunable by adjusting the molar mass of the diacrylate gel precursors, which are synthesized by linking PEG diacrylate (PEGDA) with varying proportions of DL‐dithiothreitol (DTT). The printed waveguides are used to activate photochemical and optogenetic processes in close‐to‐physiological environments. Light‐triggered migration of cells in a photoresponsive 3D hydrogel and drug release from an optogenetically‐engineered living material by delivering light across >5 cm of muscle tissue are demonstrated. These results quantify the in vitro performance, and reflect the potential of the printed degradable fibers for in vivo and clinical applications.
- ItemRegulating Bacterial Behavior within Hydrogels of Tunable Viscoelasticity(Weinheim : Wiley-VCH, 2022) Bhusari, Shardul; Sankaran, Shrikrishnan; del Campo, AránzazuEngineered living materials (ELMs) are a new class of materials in which living organism incorporated into diffusive matrices uptake a fundamental role in material's composition and function. Understanding how the spatial confinement in 3D can regulate the behavior of the embedded cells is crucial to design and predict ELM's function, minimize their environmental impact and facilitate their translation into applied materials. This study investigates the growth and metabolic activity of bacteria within an associative hydrogel network (Pluronic-based) with mechanical properties that can be tuned by introducing a variable degree of acrylate crosslinks. Individual bacteria distributed in the hydrogel matrix at low density form functional colonies whose size is controlled by the extent of permanent crosslinks. With increasing stiffness and elastic response to deformation of the matrix, a decrease in colony volumes and an increase in their sphericity are observed. Protein production follows a different pattern with higher production yields occurring in networks with intermediate permanent crosslinking degrees. These results demonstrate that matrix design can be used to control and regulate the composition and function of ELMs containing microorganisms. Interestingly, design parameters for matrices to regulate bacteria behavior show similarities to those elucidated for 3D culture of mammalian cells.
- ItemRegulating bacterial behavior within hydrogels of tunable viscoelasticity(New York : Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, 2022) Bhusari, Shardul; Sankaran, Shrikrishnan; del Campo, AránzazuEngineered living materials (ELMs) are a new class of materials in which living organism incorporated into diffusive matrices uptake a fundamental role in material’s composition and function. Understanding how the spatial confinement in 3D affects the behavior of the embedded cells is crucial to design and predict ELM’s function, regulate and minimize their environmental impact and facilitate their translation into applied materials. This study investigates the growth and metabolic activity of bacteria within an associative hydrogel network (Pluronic-based) with mechanical properties that can be tuned by introducing a variable degree of acrylate crosslinks. Individual bacteria distributed in the hydrogel matrix at low density form functional colonies whose size is controlled by the extent of permanent crosslinks. With increasing stiffness and decreasing plasticity of the matrix, a decrease in colony volumes and an increase in their sphericity is observed. Protein production surprisingly follows a different pattern with higher production yields occurring in networks with intermediate permanent crosslinking degrees. These results demonstrate that, bacterial mechanosensitivity can be used to control and regulate the composition and function of ELMs by thoughtful design of the encapsulating matrix, and by following design criteria with interesting similarities to those developed for 3D culture of mammalian cells.
- ItemThiol-Methylsulfone Based Hydrogels: Enhanced Control on Gelation Kinetics for 3D Cell Encapsulation(Washington, DC : American Chemical Society, 2019) Farrukh, Aleeza; Włodarczyk-Biegun, Malgorzata K.; del Campo, AránzazuHydrogels are useful temporal matrices for cell culture technologies. The successful mixing and encapsulation of cells within the gel requires the selection of efficient and cytocompatible gelation reactions occurring in the minute timescale under physiological conditions. The thiol-methylsulfonyl (MS) chemical reaction is introduced here as a novel chemistry to encapsulate cells in polymeric matrices. Thiol-MS crosslinking does not require a light activation step and can occur within the seconds-to-minutes timescale by adjusting the pH in the physiological range 8.0-6.6. This reaction is cytocompatible and the reaction product is hydrolytically stable in cell culture media up to 4 weeks. Cell encapsulation protocols enabling comfortable handling and yielding homogenous distribution of the embedded cells are described. All these features are relevant for the application of this crosslinking reaction to biomedical scenarios. Finally, this manuscript also compares the performance of thiol-MS hydrogels with the established thiol-maleimide and thiol-vinylsulfone hydrogels. The benefit of thiol-MS crosslinking in terms of control over hydrogelation kinetics is demonstrated.