Connective tissue is one of the four major types of animal tissue and plays essential roles throughout the human body. Genetic factors, aging, and trauma all contribute to connective tissue dysfunction and motivate the need for strategies to promote healing and regeneration. The goal here is to link a fundamental understanding of connective tissues and their multiscale properties to better inform the design and translation of novel biomaterials to promote their regeneration. Major clinical problems in adipose tissue, cartilage, dermis, and tendon are discussed that inspire the need to replace native connective tissue with biomaterials. Then, multiscale structure-function relationships in native soft connective tissues that may be used to guide material design are detailed. Several biomaterials strategies to improve healing of these tissues that incorporate biologics and are biologic-free are reviewed. Finally, important guidance documents and standards (ASTM, FDA, and EMA) that are important to consider for translating new biomaterials into clinical practice are highligted.
The publications shown here are the articles indexed by PubMed, not the complete list of the lab's publications.