Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death worldwide. Cardiovascular diseases complication can give rise to myocardial infarction which produces cell death by blockage of blood flow, leading to loss of heart function. Current treatments directed at heart repair have several disadvantages such as the lack of donors for heart transplantation or the use of non-bioactive inert materials for replacement of the damage tissue. New treatment strategies involve stimulation of heart tissue regeneration with the use of bioactive materials like chitosan, in combination with cells and biochemical factors. Chitosan scaffolds have the necessary proprieties of biocompatibility, porosity, and biodegradation, that imitates the heart extracellular matrix. Chitosan scaffolds physical proprieties, such as electrical conductivity and mechanical proprieties, can be improved by different preparation techniques and by the functionalization with other materials.
chitosan; cardiac tissue engineering; scaffolds
LIFE SCIENCES, Biochemistry
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