Research is ongoing to assess what information is required to validate films of collagen as reference extracellular matrix. During the first portion of this work we will develop protocols for characterizing the prototype collagen reference material with various instrumental techniques to develop standard metrics to which different batches can be compared. The second segment of research will focus on determining the reproducibility of cell response on collagen fibrils. Finally, examination of the behavior of cells on fibrils handled in different ways will be used to determine the functional stability of the collagen matrices. Within the first year, and continuing into the second year of funding, we will engage a user community for this material that will provide a test group for assessing the practicality of this material.
Cellular morphology change on hydrated and dehydrated collagen fibrils, (A,B) phase image, (C,D) cell bodies stained with Tx-Red.
AFM Image of Collagen Fibrils
Reproducibility of cell spreading on collagen thin films over several years of study
Movies of smooth muscle cells interacting with collagen fibrils:
SMC interaction with hydrated and dehydrated collagen
High resolution SMC on hydrated fibrils
High resolution SMC on dehydrated fibrils