The formulation and fabrication methods for several types of tissue engineering scaffolds with drug delivery capabilities are presented in this review. Tissue engineered constructs are temporary substitutes developed to treat damaged or lost tissue. One key component of such constructs is scaffolds that are often developed to mimic the extra cellular matrix (ECM). As natural ECM contains biomolecules to support proper growth and function of cells, inclusion of these biomolecular cues have been shown to be necessary for proper cell growth and function in tissue engineering. Thus, an effective tissue engineering scaffold should provide such biomolecular cues. This can be achieved through drug delivery in scaffolds. Studies have shown that drug delivery systems are necessary to protect drugs, and provide sustained drug release that is often needed for effective therapy. The tissue engineering features of 4 scaffold types are described, including films, hydrogels, fibers, and microspheres/nanospheres. Fabrication techniques and drug encapsulation methods for these scaffolds are reviewed in addition to some observations arising from the use of these techniques and methods.
Keywords: Drug delivery, tissue engineering scaffold, film, hydrogel, fiber, microsphere, nanosphere
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