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Development of a red propolis-encapsulated nanocapsule hydrogel to be use in regenerative medicine


Skin substitutes are in high demand for the treatment of burns and wounds. GelMA hydrogels are 3D polymeric structures with high aqueous content, used with the aim of mimicking ECM.

Objetivos - Metodologia - Resultados - Discussão dos Resultados/Objectives - Methodology - Results - Discussion of Results/Objetivos - Metodología - Resultados - Discusión de los resultados

The anti-inflamatory, antimicrobial and regenerative properties of red propolis (RP) are interesting for skin healing and therefore, hydrogels with RP lipid core nanocapsules were constructed. Two groups of nanocapsule suspensions were developed: PCL, a Poly-ε-Caprolactone nanocapsule without RP and Prop, a PCL nanocapsule with 5 mg/mL of RP. They were evaluated for size, polidispersivity (PDI) and zeta potencial (ZP). The quantification of the propolis content in the nanocapsules was also analyzed. Morphology, pore area, wettability and degradability were evaluated for 1) pure hydrogel, 2) hydrogels with PCL nanocapsules and 3) hydrogels with Prop nanocapsules. As preliminary results, on day 0, the PCL nanocapsules were shown to have a size of 293±36 nm, 1.8 of PDI and -17mV of ZP. When propolis was added to the system, the size was 271±40 nm, the PDI was 1.3 and the ZP was -23.5mV. After 30 days, both groups remained stable, with the ZP for PCL of -25.7mV and for the Prop -30 mV. The size and PDI for the PCL was 257.7±19 and 1.3, and 267±35 nm and 1.15 for the Prop. The quantification showed that 94.9% of the RP was within the nanocapsules. All the hydrogels showed a heterogeneous porous structure. The surface porous size varied greatly in all the groups, as follows: 35.56±56.1 µm, 13.52±16.58 µm and 24.4±29.48 µm for groups 1, 2 and 3. The same pattern occurred with the internal pores, in which were found 35.56±56.1 µm, 161.85±276.44 µm and 56.9±135 µm for groups 1, 2 and 3, respectively. The wettability was higher than 490% for all the groups tested. The degradability test showed a slight degradation in the first 6 hours for all the groups. At 24 hours, the hydrogels with propolis nanocapsules had the highest level of degradation, with 34.5% of weight loss. The same pattern was observed after 7 days with 61.5% of degradation in this group.

Considerações Finais/Final considerations/Consideraciones finales

In conclusion, although several evaluations are still required, promising biomaterial are undergoing investigation for use in skin tissue engineering.

Palavras-chave/Key words/Palabras clave

GelMA hydrogel, red propolis, nanocapsules, biomaterials, skin susbtitute.


Tissue engineering


DANIELA STEFFENS, Sarah Fontana Salvador, Paulo Roberto dos Santos, Patricia Pranke, Sidnei Moura e Silva, Ali Khademhosseini, Mariana Roesch Ely, João Antonio Pêgas Henriques