Collagen vitrigel membrane useful for paracrine assays in vitro and drug delivery systems in vivo

J Biotechnol. 2007 Aug 1;131(1):76-83. doi: 10.1016/j.jbiotec.2007.05.033. Epub 2007 Jun 6.


We previously succeeded in converting a soft and turbid disk of type-I collagen gel into a strong and transparent vitrigel membrane utilizing a concept for the vitrification of heat-denatured proteins and have demonstrated its protein-permeability and advantage as a scaffold for reconstructing crosstalk models between two different cell types. In this study, we observed the nano-structure of the type-I collagen vitrigel membrane and verified its utility for paracrine assays in vitro and drug delivery systems in vivo. Scanning electron microscopic observation revealed that the vitrigel membrane was a dense network architecture of typical type-I collagen fibrils. In the crosstalk model between PC-12 pheochromocytoma cells and L929 fibroblasts, nerve growth factor (NGF) secreted from L929 cells passed through the collagen vitrigel membrane and induced the neurite outgrowth of PC-12 cells by its paracrine effect. Also, the collagen vitrigel membrane containing vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) showed sustained-release of VEGF in vitro and its subcutaneous transplantation into a rat resulted in remarkable angiogenesis. These data suggest that the collagen vitrigel membrane is useful for paracrine assays in vitro and drug delivery systems in vivo.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Assay / instrumentation*
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Collagen Type I / metabolism*
  • Collagen Type I / ultrastructure
  • Drug Delivery Systems / instrumentation*
  • Male
  • Membranes, Artificial*
  • Nanostructures
  • Neovascularization, Physiologic
  • Nerve Growth Factor / metabolism
  • PC12 Cells
  • Paracrine Communication*
  • Permeability
  • Prostheses and Implants
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / metabolism


  • Collagen Type I
  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • Nerve Growth Factor