The Effect of Physical Cues of Biomaterial Scaffolds on Stem Cell Behavior

Shuo Wang, Sharareh Hashemi, Scott Stratton, Treena Livingston Arinzeh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Stem cells have been sought as a promising cell source in the tissue engineering field due to their proliferative capacity as well as differentiation potential. Biomaterials have been utilized to facilitate the delivery of stem cells in order to improve their engraftment and long-term viability upon implantation. Biomaterials also have been developed as scaffolds to promote stem cell induced tissue regeneration. This review focuses on the latter where the biomaterial scaffold is designed to provide physical cues to stem cells in order to promote their behavior for tissue formation. Recent work that explores the effect of scaffold physical properties, topography, mechanical properties and electrical properties, is discussed. Although still being elucidated, the biological mechanisms, including cell shape, focal adhesion distribution, and nuclear shape, are presented. This review also discusses emerging areas and challenges in clinical translation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2001244
JournalAdvanced Healthcare Materials
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 3 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Pharmaceutical Science


  • 3D printing
  • electrospun fibers
  • hydrogels
  • microcontact printing
  • stem cells


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