Moving from static to dynamic complexity in hydrogel design

Nat Commun. 2012;3:1269. doi: 10.1038/ncomms2271.


Hydrogels are water-swollen polymer networks that have found a range of applications from biological scaffolds to contact lenses. Historically, their design has consisted primarily of static systems and those that exhibit simple degradation. However, advances in polymer synthesis and processing have led to a new generation of dynamic systems that are capable of responding to artificial triggers and biological signals with spatial precision. These systems will open up new possibilities for the use of hydrogels as model biological structures and in tissue regeneration.

MeSH terms

  • Biocompatible Materials / chemistry
  • Biocompatible Materials / therapeutic use
  • Guided Tissue Regeneration / methods
  • Humans
  • Hydrogels / chemistry*
  • Hydrogels / therapeutic use
  • Mechanical Phenomena
  • Polymers / chemistry*
  • Polymers / therapeutic use
  • Time Factors
  • Tissue Engineering / methods


  • Biocompatible Materials
  • Hydrogels
  • Polymers